Red Claw Seafood & Wings opens Friday in former Pho Van Noodle Souper space

Pho Van Noodle Souper, the Vietnamese pho shop at 472 South Federal Boulevard, closed early last week -- but the space won't be closed for long. Red Claw Seafood and Wings, which took over the spot just before the lights went dark, opens this Friday, April 16, with a menu devoted not to pho, but to crawfish, crab legs, oysters, snails and seven different variations of chicken wings.

"I chose this concept because no one else in Denver is doing anything else like it," says owner Denny Duong, who moved to Denver five years ago from Arkansas. "I've cooked Cajun food my whole life, but I also love chicken wings and Vietnamese food, so this is going to be a combination of Vietnamese food, Southern cooking and great wings."

Duong decided to open the joint after graduating with an engineering degree from the University of Colorado Denver and striking out on the employment front. "I couldn't find a job in engineering," he says, shrugging, "but I'm really passionate about food, especially Louisiana-style food, so I opened a restaurant instead."

Duong says his favorite dish on the menu is the gumbo, a "very, very spicy recipe," he warns, that was "created from years and years of eating gumbo."

Red Claw will be open Sunday through Thursday from noon to 10 p.m. and from noon to midnight Friday and Saturday. For more information, call 720-328-3620.

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