The name Pee Wee’s Crabcakes on the Go was an example of truth in advertising.
Charles “Pee Wee” Armstrong started it up a year ago by delivering orders of crabcakes to an extended network of family and friends. By the summer, he turned it into a take-out operation with head-turning Creole-style seafood platters, based in his brother’s Central City bakery, On Faith Donut Shop.
As of the new year, though, the business has its own home in downtown New Orleans and the name has been updated to simply Pee Wee’s Crabcakes.
“I’m finally able to serve my food the way I wanted to, as a true restaurant,” said Armstrong. “It’s getting closer to my dream.”
Pee Wee’s Crabcakes is now based in the downtown bar CBD Social (709 St. Charles Ave.), which had hosted pop-ups in the past. Now it operates as a hybrid, with CBD Social handling the bar and Pee Wee’s running the kitchen.
There’s a full bar, a pool table and TVs. In the kitchen, Armstrong will still pack up take-out orders. But now he can plate and serve them too for table service.
The draw here is Armstrong's original way with specialty New Orleans seafood dishes.
The namesake crabcakes are thin, creamy-textured and finished with a sweet, tangy sauce, a creation Armstrong attributes to his 16-year-old daughter Asya.
The combination platters look pricey at $40, but arrive with enough food for several people. The “seafood tornado,” for instance, packs together crabcakes, stuffed hard shell crabs, stuffed catfish, seafood pasta and broccoli. This is exuberant casual dining with a sense of place.
Since making the move downtown, Armstrong has been expanding his range working through a kid’s menu and a happy hour menu with bites like crabcake balls and seafood cheese fries (served 3-6 p.m. on weekdays and after 10 p.m. daily).
Meanwhile, Armstrong’s brother Sergio Scott continues to run On Faith Donut Shop nearby in Central City at 2908 Martin Luther King Blvd. Pee Wee’s will soon stock its king cake to add a Carnival time satellite location.
Pee Wee’s serves lunch through late night, staying open to midnight for the service industry crowd downtown.
709 St. Charles Ave., 504-358-7986
Daily 11 a.m.-midnight
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