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Crabcakes at Morton's?

Hey Everyone.

My parents are coming in to town (staying in Rosslyn near my apartment) and have only requested that I try and find them some good crabcakes.

After reading around on the boards, It seems that people here like the Prime Rib, stuff at the Eastern Market, and apparently there is some debate over this G&M place near BWI.

When I had asked some of my co-workers, one of them swore that the best crabcakes he had ever eaten were from Morton's steakhouse.

I know that Morton's isnt cheap, and one would think to go there for steak, but I wanted to know if anyone has been there and can offer any advice?

Also, whats the latest on good places for the crabcakes? I dont mind spending the money, I just wanted some place for them to eat.


(Side note, does anyone know where I can just buy some fresh Maryland crab meat to send them home with)


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  1. For crab cakes, I would send you to Oceanaire, or to Kinkeads for the crab cake appetizer.

    1. It pobably won't be Maryland crabmeat, but Jerry's in Lanham,MD
      has a terrific crabcake and an even better item called a Crab Bomb...

      1. Has anyone been to the Blue Iguana in Fairfax (fair lakes area) for crab cakes? I went years ago and had the best crab cakes, very little filler, big lumps of crab. My FIL went a couple of weeks later and said it was terrible--like mashed potatoes as his analogy. A few weeks after that, we went once more and the crab cakes were great again. This was years ago but the restaurant is still there. I was wondering how it is now.

        2 Replies
        1. re: chowser

          My SO's brother used to be a waiter there. Whenever we wanted to go out for crabcakes, he'd usually steer us clear of Blue Iguana because all the food on the menu was never consistently good. It all depended on who was in the kitchen that night and the server you got. That was about a year ago (he's working elsewhere now). Hope that helps.

          1. re: ubermasonfan

            That sounds like my experience a few years ago. Too bad it hasn't changed. Thanks!

        2. I'm very picky about crabcakes and two places in the area with great crabcakes are Sweet Water Tavern (Merrifield) and Legal Seafood (Tysons II)...both have huge lumps of crab, very little filler and always quite tasty!

          Oh yeah...and I've also had good crabcakes at the Boulevard Woodgrill in Clarendon...diagonally across from Whitlow's.

          2 Replies
          1. re: AlliantK

            Have you tried the crabcakes at the other Great American Restaurants? I'm wondering if they all have the same ones.

            1. re: chowser

              Its a safe bet that they are all the same recipe...preparation and execution may vary. I had the crabcakes at one of the Sweetwaters...they were fine...good by DC/NoVA standards...but aren't all that in comparison to what you can get in Baltimore or, if its your thing, one of the finer dining places in DC (such as Kinkead's or Oceanaire as mentioned). I hear Sea Catch has good crabcakes but I have not had them myself.

              The "blue crab fritter" appetizer at many of the GAR restaurants is outstanding, and I would recommend that over the crabcakes. The hybrid crab/shrimp version available at the Coastal Flats is not as good.

          2. cf folks is only open for midwek lunch, but I'd say it would be very difficult indeed to find a better Maryland style crabcake. Not expensive.

            1. Thanks for the replies everyone.

              Maybe Ill give the Woodgrill a try, since its just down the street from my place anyway... Its kind of sad to be this close to the shore and to not use Maryland crab at a place....

              Then again, thats what happens when supply outstrips demand, right?

              And does anyone know where in the NOVA/DC area to just buy fresh crab meat?

              1. McCormick and Schmick might be somewhere to try for a good crabcake. The Quarterdeck is a great crab place right in your neck of the woods - Rosslyn - and I think they have a decent crab cake as well. Finally, the Carlyle in Shirlington is a good bet.

                Oh, and the Del Merei in Alexandria has a good crabcake sandwich at lunch and I believe they offer it at dinner as well.

                My Marylander inlaws who moved out of the area always stop by Slavin and Sons on Glebe Rd at 395 for some crabmeat on their way out of town. It may not be Maryland crab, due to supply issues, but it will be good crab. You can call them and see what they've got. Sometimes my inlaws take home a bushel of steamed crabs - good stuff.

                1. I can no longer recommend G&M...I think many others here would agree that they have gone way downhill in the crabcake department. I don't know what happened. I was brought up on their crabcakes, dad took me in there almost weekly. They were still good when I worked in Linthicum several years ago. I went over the summer, and my crabcake sandwich was just not that good at all, and the posts I have seen here suggest I am far from the only one to note this decline.

                  However, if you are willing to venture up to Baltimore, there are so many good places to get crabcakes. You can search the board for these. Two which stand out in my mind: Faidley's at Lexington Market serves an excellent crabcake which falls just short of the impossible-to-meet hype in my opinion...and Duda's tavern, which (like many other bars in that area) has very good food and one of my favorite crabcakes. Either would be a good "Baltimore" experience as well.

                  I haven't had the crabcakes at Morton's, but rather than head there, if you want to stay close I would suggest Carlyle as someone else did. In addition to decent crabcakes, they have a blue crab fritter appetizer which is outstanding, and a pretty tasty menu all around in my opinion.

                  1. I saw Market Inn on FOOD TV the other night. Never had but looked good ( they even ship) .... since you are in Rosslyn. I live in Crofton so I like Edgewater Restaurant for regular fried crabcakes (deal on Weds)and they have very good Lump cakes too. I just don't like their tartar sauce (or many others either for that matter ... I like McDonalds believe it or not).I ask for a lot of lemon. I like G & M also. I like the hint of mutard and again I don't care for their tartar. Gunnings right off the B-W Pkwy is famous for their crabs and they are great but I also love their CRAB FLUFF which is kind of like a deep fried crab cke with a fluffy batter. They used to have a deal wirh a couple crabs, some soup, a cake and a fluff but its been too long.

                    1. Wow, thats lots of places!

                      Thanks for all the input everyone, Ill have to distill it and see where we end up in our sightseeing. Ill make a good list, and we can pick wherever is close at that time of the day.

                      Thanks again!

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Clarkbug

                        The Fourth Estate restaurant in the National Press Club has a great crab cake. Prices are a bit higher for non-members but the food is great.
                        Call Southern Maryland Seafood Company, 202-546-9135 about the availablity of fresh local crabmeat since the season is over. (They may have it from the Gulf or Carolinas but that's the identical blue crab.) Family owned local business. A lot of embassies shop there; and the fish is impeccably fresh.

                      2. Regarding fresh Maryland crabmeat...if you are traveling by way of BWI Airport..you can try to get some good fresh Maryland crabmeat at the Maryland Fish Market at FRANKS SEAFOOD
                        the market is located in Jessup,MD between the B/W Parkway and I-95(both major roads to BWI Airport. They will pack it on ice for an extended trip...

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Hue

                          Frank's Seafood is a good place to get Maryland crabmeat. I can't even remember the last time I ordered cakes in a restaurant, since they are so easy to make at home. I prefer to order Crab Imperial,stuffed flounder or stuffed shrimp.

                        2. Market Inn (thanks for remembering the name) was featured on "Road Tasted" on FOOD TV, hosted by Paula Dean's (aka ms. Butter) 2 sons. Isn't establishment located right on the Hill?

                          1. Can't give you any advice on VA or DC choices for crabcakes. But for Maryland, I would suggest Faidley's for two reasons: it is crabcake mecca, and they will package them to go. I don't think they will sell just the crabmeat, however. (And you really need to prepare your parents for Faidley's - it is counter service in a marginal area of Baltimore. But there is a parking lot adjacent to the building and I have never felt unsafe there.)

                            Another place that has ships crabcakes and packages them for travel is G&M. Yeh, G&M uses more filler than other places, but it is good tasting filler with a slight mustard taste that I love, and as long as they are not overcooked, the cakes are great, and far better than those round objects called crabcakes served elsewhere in the country. Unless your parents are crabcake connoisseurs, they will be thrilled with a G&M crabcake.

                            There is another restaurant down the stree from G&M called the Italian Grove that serves a wonderful crabcake, better than G&M, and I believe they also ship them.

                            Gerry's in Lanham is also very good for crabcakes with virtually no filling.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: Denise

                              "There is another restaurant down the stree from G&M called the Italian Grove that serves a wonderful crabcake, better than G&M, and I believe they also ship them."

                              I believe that's Olive Grove, and they are owned by the same folks as G & M, and serve the same crabcakes. Pretty sure Timbuktu (off of Rt. 100) is also owned by the same folks.

                              1. re: Denise

                                I'd be very, very surprised if you can't buy crabmeat at Faidley's.

                                As for Olive Grove, I haven't had their crabcakes, but I found the food there in general very unimpressive, which was particularly surprising since they seem to be quite popular, judging by the crowds. I just don't get it.

                              2. My wife love Crabcakes. She eats them everywhere we go. She says Morton's Crabcakes are by far the best she has eaten anywhere in the world!!! and she has had them on 5 continents! When it's a special occasion (or not), she always opts for Morton's. I love them at Morton's as well but don't consider myself an expert...

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: TBB3

                                  Has she had any of the local favorites in Baltimore? Because that would trump the offerings on most other continents, or planets for that matter.

                                2. Well, my folks are here and we are trying to decide what to go with for tomorrow's dinner... Ill have to let you know the overall results.

                                  Thanks everyone for your opinions on things!