It’s (soft) opening day at Howlin’ Rays, and it sure seems like word is out. The popular Nashville hot chicken truck-turned-restaurant announced their public arrival earlier today, and the Far East Plaza didn’t take long to get absolutely mobbed.
Early on, the line pushed out the front door of the smallish space and edged down towards the street outside the plaza, with wait times of half an hour or more. By early afternoon things had calmed down considerably, more thanks to Johnny Ray Zone’s team inside than flagging foot traffic. As the photo above shows, just about everyone sitting at the colorful picnic tables was enjoying a box of chicken by 1 p.m.
As for the menu, this is a soft opening for Howlin’ Rays — their official arrival isn’t until next week, so don’t expect the full slate of available options. Instead it’s mostly smaller stuff for now like wings and fries, but with the inclusion of that all-popular fried chicken sandwich.
Until they get the whole flow dialed in, opening hours are lunch only, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., or until the bird runs out. And judging by today's lines that seems a distinct possibility, so plan accordingly.