Bayou-infused Surf's Up restaurant opens in Mundelein's Hawley Lake Plaza

  • Steven Moore, owner of the new Surf's Up restaurant in Mundelein, says business has been good despite the challenge of opening during the pandemic.

    Steven Moore, owner of the new Surf's Up restaurant in Mundelein, says business has been good despite the challenge of opening during the pandemic. Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 9/3/2020 11:30 AM

A casual, Southern-style seafood restaurant has joined the businesses in Mundelein's Hawley Lake Plaza.

Entrees at Surf's Up, 404 N. Lake St., include po'boy sandwiches, crab legs, lobster, shrimp, several types of fish and chicken wings. Sides include fried green tomatoes, cheese grits, dirty rice and fried biscuits.

 

Co-owner Steven Moore proudly noted Surf's Up is the only restaurant in the area selling fried alligator, a Louisiana specialty.

"It's a very bayou-influenced menu," said Moore, a Mundelein resident.

Steven Moore, owner of the new Surf's Up restaurant in Mundelein, serves up lobster, chicken wings, fried alligator and other Bayou-inspired cuisine.
Steven Moore, owner of the new Surf's Up restaurant in Mundelein, serves up lobster, chicken wings, fried alligator and other Bayou-inspired cuisine. - Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

A grand opening celebration was held this past weekend. Despite the pandemic, business has been great so far, Moore said.

"We've been busy," he said. "Restaurants are still making money."

Surf's Up is a relatively small chain of franchised restaurants. Others operate in Aurora, Chicago and elsewhere in the area, as well as in a few other states.

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Surf's Up aims to "bring good seafood and a good experience to all people, not just people of color," said Moore, who is Black.

"We believe in having a good time and providing good food to everyone," he added.

In Mundelein, Surf's Up replaced the Eating Hub, a joint with an eclectic menu that opened in 2017 but closed earlier this year.

Steven Moore has opened the new Surf's Up restaurant in the Hawley Lake Plaza shopping center Mundelein.
Steven Moore has opened the new Surf's Up restaurant in the Hawley Lake Plaza shopping center Mundelein. - Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

The Hawley Lake Plaza is on the northwest corner of Route 45 and Hawley Street, on the western edge of the downtown area.

A Subway sandwich shop, a takeout barbecue joint called Smokin' BBQ on 45, a restaurant called Lucky Bernie's and Taqueria Los Naranjos 2 and are among the other tenants in the L-shaped shopping center.

The taqueria replaced a longtime tenant called the Family Fishery that closed last year.

Mundelein Mayor Steve Lentz said officials are always excited to welcome new dining options in town.

"Surf's Up is a franchise that has experienced success in other communities, and we anticipate that success will continue here," Lentz said in an announcement about the restaurant's arrival.

Offering dine-in and takeout service, Surf's Up is open Tuesdays through Sundays from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. For more, call (847) 970-9770 or visit surfsupmundelein.com.

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