HOUSTON — Crawfish season has started, and with the rush for mudbugs, fans often find their favorite spots are sold out.
Crawfish prices and inventory fluctuate regularly during the season and crawfish lovers often waste time calling stores and restaurants to see if they’re still in stock and checking on the prices per pound.
Not to worry. There’s an app for that.
“The Crawfish App” is like the White Pages for crawfish lovers.
It shows the places with the best, the biggest and the cheapest crawfish in the country.
Live or boiled.
Baton Rouge residents Laney King and her husband created the app in 2017.
“We were calling around like we always do on Friday nights, trying to get crawfish prices, to boil for that weekend,” King said. “My husband looked over at me and said, ‘I can’t believe there’s not an app for this.’”
King says there are now more than 225,000 users on the app, and 40% of them live in Texas.
The Crawfish App has more than 500 crawfish restaurants listed in the Houston area.
KHOU 11 went in search of the highest-rated crawfish restaurant in the Houston area based on the app and Yelp scores.
The stars led to a hidden spot in a corner pocket of the Hong Kong Market shopping center in Chinatown.
The location would have been easily missed if it hadn’t been for the apps.
“Five pounds of the mixed-medium with corn and potatoes,” Crawfish Cafe server Janida Wong said as she placed a steaming bowl of crawfish on the table. “The mixes are our most popular flavor, garlic and lemon pepper mixed together. People call it the ‘house special’ flavor.”
Crawfish egg rolls are another unique and popular item on the menu.
Wong says the Crawfish Cafe has become so popular that business owners have decided to expand.
They will soon be opening a second location in the Heights.
“Those are our favorite types of stories,” King said. “When we created the app, we had no idea the impact we’d have on not only the crawfish industry but individual businesses.”
King said she got a call from one crawfish vendor who was getting ready to close his business before he was added to the app.
His fortune changed once his business was able to be found on The Crawfish App and the owner was able to keep his operation afloat.