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Where to eat Dungeness Crab in SF?

We're heading up to SF this weekend and I hear it's crab season (yum yum). I did a search on the boards, but it looks like most people are looking for places to buy live crab to cook at home. We don't have that luxury, so where is a good place to indulge in some crab? Chez Panisse seems a little too spendy for my tastes and I don't know that we'll be in Berkeley around meal time.

Should we just head to Fisherman's Wharf and see who's cooking when we get there?

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  1. My favorite is the cold cracked crab with warm truffle butter at Absinthe.

    http://absinthe.com/menu/menu.php?men...

    Don't eat at Fisherman's Wharf.

    1. I wouldn't eat at the Wharf - you can try Tadich's. Last weekend I had the crabcakes there - pretty good, but truthfully I prefer the crab Louis and a shrinp cocktail! I must confess that I am a person who hates extracting the crab from the shell and want that done for me!

      1. Just ate fantastic dungeness crab at PPQ Dungeness Island Vietnamese Cuisine on Clement Street. Order the crab dinner for two which comes with a cabbage & chicken salad, imperial rolls, and garlic noodles. You have a choice of how you'd like the crab done. Everything was excellent and very good value ($46 for two). Or you could wait in line and go to Swans Oyster Depot, but it's counter service only and they close at 5 pm. Tadich's might be an idea - call and ask. Or maybe Yabbies is doing crab.

        2 Replies
        1. re: vuvy

          I love Swan's. Just order the crab without cocktail sauce. Go for the butter. Or the Louie sauce on the side.

          1. re: uptown jimmy

            One of my faves! They are always so nice about melting some butter for me. That plus the sourdough and a glass of wine is sheer heaven for me. The chitchat with the staff and regulars is just icing on the cake.

        2. definately *do not* eat at fisherman's wharf! i would recommend a small place on Geary called La Vie. It's a sweet, friendly Vietnamese place that specializes in crab. They're similar to Crustacean, but cheaper and friendlier. I like the noodles and crab at La Vie just as much as at crustacean.

          1. So, between La Vie & PPQ what would be the consensus pick?

            1 Reply
            1. re: Peter Cherches

              They are both fab! PPQ is a bit more cool in feeling, casual and loud, La Vie a bit more refined, warmer room and quiet with a friendly staff... I have been to both a couple times each and think the quality is about the same, menu and prices comparable.