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What's cooking/Capsule review, Nov. 23



What's cooking

Crew Restaurant and Bar, a new concept created by St. Louis native Scott Holtzhouser, was scheduled to open this week in the new shopping center at Interstate 430 and Highway 10 in West Little Rock.

Holtzhouser relocated with his wife to Little Rock to open the restaurant in Lou Schickel’s new development.

Previously, Holtzhouser, who graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in 2000, ran a fine-dining restaurant in New York, sold a year ago, and he operated the cafe in the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Library in Hyde Park, N.Y. He was among several chefs invited to cook at the Clinton Presidential Center opening in 2004 and decided then, he said, to pursue a project in Little Rock. The restaurant’s website, with a menu and other information, is www.crewrestaurant.com.

Blue Coast Burrito, which debuted in the market on East McCain Boulevard in North Little Rock, is opening a new branch on Taylor Loop Road behind the Walgreens in West Little Rock. Blue Coast was created by Ryan Hamra, son of former area Wendy’s franchisee Gerald Hamra.

Capsule review

NEW: ABE’S OLD FEEDHOUSE Just when you thought there were enough, or maybe even too many, all-you-can-eat buffets, we stumbled upon a gem. The place is a brand-new restaurant built this past March. Locals told us, “They don’t have a huge buffet, but what they have is really good..” It is really good — some of the best food we’ve had in a long time. To say the least, it is your basic American fare of fried chicken, fish and shrimp, ribs and a variety of veggies. But that’s where the “basic” ends. The catfish was plump (some pieces were more than a half-inch thick) and hot, with a light cornmeal coating. A pleasant surprise was a very tasty crab cake made like a stuffing. The smoked ribs were thick and flavorful. The veggies were not missing anything, except Mommy bringing it to the table. The large Saturday night crowd guaranteed a timely restocking of the buffet, Nothing sat very long. For dessert, soft-serve ice cream is available with all the toppings and, oh my, the best, sweet, big, hot cinnamon rolls. You have to watch the kitchen bring the rolls out to hurriedly get one, or two, or three, or ... All that pleasure, with drink and tax is about $13 for adults and under $5 for kids (depending on age). 510 Hwy 5 North, 794-2219. CC. No alcohol. $-$$. D Tue.-Sat.

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