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RedEye: Angry Crab Serves Fresh, Affordable Seafood; Taus Makes Solid Comeback; More

Plus comfort cooking is a mixed bag at Luella's Southern Kitchen.

Taus Authentic
Taus Authentic
Marc Much

Seafood lovers will want to make their way over to West Rogers Park, where new BYOB spot the Angry Crab is "serving up pristine, affordable family-style Cajun-spiced" fare, according to RedEye. With live lobsters, "hulking" dungeness crab and crawfish arriving daily, Michael Nagrant writes that the selection is "super-fresh" and prices are "really reasonable" compared to market value.

Each order is cooked with a housemade seasoning sauce and spice mix while Nagrant's favorite is a blend of all three sauces as the "garlic butter and Cajun seasoning [meld] pretty well with the sweet meat of the dungeness crab." The lobster is also a winner, featuring "super-tender" tail and claw meat. Sides include red skin potatoes and corn on the cob, which have a "nice bite," and a "fantastic" andouille flecked with garlic and hot peppers. Overall, Angry Crab "really has no parallel in Chicago right now." [RedEye]

The return of Michael Taus' "steady cooking" to Wicker Park with Taus Authentic is a solid experience, writes Amy Cavanaugh. For starters, chicken liver mousse is a "lovely rendition" but "fragrant" sunchoke dosa is even better, stuffed with spiced cubes of sunchoke and sweet golden raisins and a pool of curry sauce. While lobster with oxtail ravioli is "perfectly cooked," the ravioli and broth "weigh the dish down." Moving onto entrees, veal cheek "pot-au-feu" is a "solid update" on classic French beef stew and a massive order of fried chicken is enough to feed two. And for dessert, a fruit tart is stuffed with apple, caramel and lemon-thyme syrup. [TOC]

Luella's Southern Kitchen is the latest soul food spot to hit Chicago and while results are mixed, Mike Sula thinks it's a welcome addition. The shrimp is "remarkably good, fat and sweet" and resting in a pool of "ultracreamy" grits but they're "overwhelmed" in the po' boy. Chicken and waffles is also "one of [the] better" dishes, mounted on "thick, crispy, sweet" Belgian waffles while a braised short-rib mac ‘n' cheese is an excellent modernized mashup. Unfortunately, a southern flatbread topped with deep-fried pickles, smoked chicken, andouille and pimento cheese and drizzled with barbecue sauce is a "cartoonish attempt to knit together incompatible regional foods." Desserts are also flawed: beignets are "leaden, cakey, and greasy" and Mississippi mud pie "nearly collapses from the powerful chocolate burden it bears." [Reader]

Luella's Southern Kitchen

4609 North Lincoln Avenue, , IL 60625 (773) 961-8196 Visit Website

The Angry Crab

5665 North Lincoln Avenue, , IL 60659 (773) 784-6848 Visit Website

Taus Authentic

1846 W Division St, Chicago, IL 60622 (312) 561-4500