HOUSTON, Texas — Crawfish lovers, get your peelers ready! Crawfish season is officially underway in Houston.
Several spots have already started cooking up your favorite crustacean.
“It’s refreshing when you come to Houston and you find some crawfish that’s actually pretty good," crawfish lover Britni Jordan said.
Most crawfish are born and raised in Louisiana, but Houstonians are quick to claim them.
“There’s probably as much crawfish eaten in Houston as in Lafayette per person. I mean it’s huge here," co-owner of Crawfish Shack in Crosby Dan Meaux said.
Lotus Seafood is on day two of mudbugs at their locations.
“I think the flavor, the taste, it tastes like little lobsters," general manager of Lotus Seafood Jason Ly said. “We pick up sample batches first, and then we will try it out and when it’s up to par, that’s when we will start picking up a lot of crawfish and start distributing it."
Crawfish Shack opens only during crawfish season. For them, that’s in a few days, and they’ll start drive-thru only.
“The first day of drive-thru is always crazy busy. They start lining up a few hours early," Meaux said.
This season, the shack had to open a little later than last year.
“The quantity just wasn’t up to par," Meaux said.
“We had a hard freeze during Christmas that slowed things down," crawfish specialist with LSU AgCenter Mark Shirley said. “Crawfish ponds in southwest Louisiana still have a lot of crawfish. A lot of the crawfish are kind of small, but they’re growing."
Shirley said while the mudbugs may be smaller now, they’ll continue to grow. But the cost this year may be higher.
“Don’t bark too much if you see prices have increased over last year. It’s all because the production costs have increased quite a bit," Shirley said.
Both Lotus Seafood and Crawfish Shack say they had to raise prices this year, but hope they can go down further into the season.
Lotus Seafood went from $8.00/pound in 2022 to $10.00/pound in 2023. Crawfish Shack went from $7.95/pound in 2022 to $8.95/pound in 2023.