RESTAURANT TRANSITIONS: Cock of the Walk closed; Copper Grill changing; Freddy's in west Little Rock opening soon

Published 1 December 2017

Cock of the Walk, 7103 Cock of the Walk Drive off Maumelle Blvd., North Little Rock, has definitely closed, not temporarily, but for good. We reported a couple of weeks ago that the down-home catfish restaurant's Facebook page sorrowfully told patrons, "Thank you all for the wonderful years, but sadly we are closed," but that the phone number, (501) 758-7182, returned a voicemail message that the restaurant would be closed only until Nov. 15. That phone number has now been disconnected, the Maumelle Boulevard-side marquee sign says "closed," and beneath it is a banner of the same size that says "For Sale: Restaurant and Land."

Copper Grill, 300 E. Third St., Little Rock, is marking its 10th anniversary with a design change -- including an enlarged bar, additional "group-friendly" seating, a streetside patio and a couple of big high-definition TVs -- and new, more casual, Southern-inspired lunch and dinner menus to cater to "our frequent diners and neighbors," according to a news release. Among the changes: more small plates and snacks; a special "from-scratch" meatloaf, also available in a grilled meatloaf sandwich with spicy mustard; and a new wild mushroom Cabernet sauce for the heavily aged Angus Filet Mignon. The meatloaf has been a big success, says owner-chef Mary Beth Ringgold; so has a French dip sandwich made with "heavily aged, marbled, Angus beef that we roast ourselves, not a processed deli meat." Hours are 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday-Saturday. The phone number is (501) 375-3333.

A December opening is pending for the west Little Rock location of Freddy's Frozen Custard and Steakburgers, at the southwest corner of Chenal Parkway and South Bowman Road, in front of Wal-Mart and next to Taco Bell. In central Arkansas there's a Freddy's on East McCain Boulevard in North Little Rock and restaurants under construction in the Shoppes of Benton just off Interstate 30 and in Fort Smith. And Arkansas Online reports franchisee Kevin Morrow has plans to open locations in Cabot, Searcy and Batesville "over the next several years." The Wichita, Kan.-based fast-casual chain/franchise operation also has three Northwest Arkansas outlets, in Fayetteville, Rogers and Springdale.

Friday was the last day of business at 205 W. Capitol Ave., Little Rock, for Hanaroo Sushi Bar. Expect it to reopen in a week or two at 215 Center St., the space Three Fold Noodles and Dumpling Co. vacated to move to 611 Main St. Details are still sketchy, including whether the restaurant will keep the same hours -- currently 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and 5-9:30 p.m. Monday-Friday, 5-9:30 p.m. Saturday. Calls to the phone number, (501) 301-7900, as of deadline returned only a curt voicemail message: "The mailbox number you are trying to reach is not in service."

Folks mourning the closure, after 17 years, of Arkansas Burger Co., 7410 Cantrell Road, Little Rock, may take comfort in knowing that a large portion of the items from the restaurant's decor, spanning a half-century of Arkansas culture and history (that owners Dan and Jeanne Spencer picked up at estate sales and antique stores) are now in the possession of the Arkansas State Archives. The trove includes license plates, Razorback memorabilia (including some Razorback cheerleader pull-string dolls, one of which could still belt out "Beat Texas") and the large Coleman Dairy clock.

Laurie Suriff, founder of Memphis-based Whimsy Cookie Co., and her financial adviser husband, Aaron, have a target to open by Christmas a 2,000-square-foot west Little Rock franchise shop in a shopping center at 401 S. Bowman Road. Offerings are a signature sugar cookie and gooey butter cookies (in chocolate, red velvet, strawberry, birthday cake and lemon). It's the first of what the owners hope will be several Arkansas shops over the next five years, with sights set, Arkansas Online reports, on Jonesboro, Fayetteville and just across the state line in Texarkana, Texas.

The 601 Club, the Arkansas Repertory Theatre's young professionals group, will host its second annual Ugly Christmas Sweater Pub Crawl, 3-6 p.m. Dec. 9. The Toddy Trolley departs from the Rep Annex, 518 Main St., Little Rock, stopping at Little Rock and North Little Rock breweries and brewpubs, which will offer drink specials and giveaways. On the bus: "holiday tunes" and complimentary drinks. Cost is $10, free for 601 Club members. The trolley returns to the Rep Annex for the 6:30 p.m. curtain of The Santaland Diaries (tickets, $40, are not included in the Pub Crawl package). Make reservations by calling (501) 378-0405 or email awestlake@therep.org.

Yellow Rocket Concepts' Big Orange Rogers is up and running in the Pinnacle Hills Promenade Outdoor Mall, 2203 S. Promenade Blvd., Rogers. It's the third Big Orange location (the other two are in Little Rock, the original on Chenal Parkway and the other in Midtown). The kitchen is open 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Sunday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday. The phone number is (479) 202-5339.

And Cantina Laredo, in the Midtowne Shopping Center, 207 N. University Ave. at West Markham Street, Little Rock, is once again offering for customer pickup its holiday tamales -- two varieties: beef with chili con carne and cheddar cheese or chicken with salsa verde and queso fresco. Cost either way is $16.95 per dozen; serve them cold or hot (the restaurant will provide heating instructions). Place orders through 6 p.m. Christmas Eve; pick 'em up on the 23rd or the 24th. Call (501) 280-0407.

Has a restaurant opened -- or closed -- near you in the last week or so? Does your favorite eatery have a new menu? Is there a new chef in charge? Drop us a line. Call (501) 399-3667 or (501) 378-3513, or send a note to Restaurants, Weekend Section, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, P.O. Box 2221, Little Rock, Ark. 72203. Send email to:

eharrison@arkansasonline.com

Weekend on 11/30/2017