THE BRAND IS KEEPING ITS GOALS IN SIGHT.

Despite the challenges over the past year, Angry Crab Shack remains committed to hitting the 100-unit mark; the brand just pushed back its deadline two years to 2025. That confidence stems from a strong brand identity that distinguishes the Arizona-based chain from the competition. It specializes in the perennially beloved seafood category but at a price well below steak-and-seafood houses and other upscale concepts. Plus, Angry Crab Shack embraces punchy flavor profiles—mostly of Cajun and Asian influence—that attract more adventurous diners.

“You’ve always got to keep your brand fresh, even when you’re a young brand. You want to look at where you can keep improving your menu,” says brand president Andrew Diamond. “Our vision statement is, ‘Never be satisfied with what’s already been achieved.’ So we’re always going to be looking to innovate. We’re always going to be looking to improve and get better.”

Although the system’s current split is about 50/50, franchising will be the primary growth vehicle moving forward. To ensure that expansion is solid and sustainable, Angry Crab Shack is mostly seeking multiunit owners who wish to diversify their portfolios or flip their current restaurants.

Angry-Crab-charred-oysters-covered-in-garlic-butter-and-parmesan-cheese

Delivering the Angry Crab Shack experience off-premises was a challenge, given its festive atmosphere, which made it a go-to venue for graduations, birthdays, and anniversaries. In addition to providing online ordering and third-party delivery services, the brand revamped its packaging to keep the seafood—a notoriously tricky food for takeaway—fresh.

In-house dining closures also afforded the company time to rethink its menu. Prior to COVID-19, most guests ordered the seafood boil by the pound, and demand for this popular menu item has been consistent throughout the past year. But in response to the pandemic, Angry Crab Shack made the offering more flexible, allowing guests to essentially assemble their own variety packs, with options like dungeness crab, crawfish, mussels, and lobster.

Article originally published by FSR magazine.

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