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Mar 22, 2007 08:08 AM

Dungeoness Crabs?

Hi, I am looking for a place to have Dungeoness Crabs in San Fran that is not a completely cheesey tourist trap. (Yet another toursit looking to get away from other tourists!) I was last there as a child and remember going to the warf & eating little cups of crab meat from outdoor vendors. But I would like to have a nice sit-down lunch (not "fancy"), great crabs, NO PLASTIC BIBS or souvineer tee-shirts!

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  1. The bibs are for cioppino, a very messy dish.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Sharuf

      All the community crab feeds I've been to, Thanh Long and most Vietnamese places bring you bibs with crab.

    2. Sam's in the financial district is a long-time local favorite. Closed weekends. Reservations recommended.

      1. Crab season in the SF Bay Area is pretty much over. Restaurants serving crab are now getting it from further north in the Pacific. Swan's Oyster Depot (1517 Polk St.) could be the THE classic spot in SF for for fresh cracked crab.

        2 Replies
        1. re: DavidT

          But a note for OP: I'm not sure what you mean by a "sit-down lunch," but I believe Swan's is still counter seating only. Lines can be long, so it's quicker to go outside peak meal times. And it's cash only. But the seafood has a great reputation.

          1. ok folks, i don't think this post is about bibs.
            first of all, it's dungeness, a town on the olympic peninsula near puget sound that gave the crab its name.
            now if the op is looking for 'plain' cracked crab, i'm at a loss. i do this at home of course, and if i want something zippier i go to a chinese or viet place for salt n pepper crab or whatever, or i get cioppino.
            does anyone know if the place next to hog island in the ferry bldg serves cracked crab? it seems like a good bet there.
            actually, neecole, if you haven't tried cioppino that is what you should do. locals love this crab and seafood stew, and there are many posts on it here.

            4 Replies
            1. re: echo

              I apologize for my mispelling of Dungeness...I'm an east coast Yank, what do expect expect?!
              Thanks to all for the does sound like Swan's is the place.

              1. re: neecole68

                If you go for a very LATE lunch, there won't be a line, esp. during the week. They close about 5:30 pm and are closed on Sunday. Just a counter with backless stools but FRESH crab, prawns, smoked salmon, raw oysters, etc.Very informal, patrons are fresh seafood lovers from all classes of population. I like that aspect of it.

              2. re: echo

                I had the crab salad there. Basically, a big mound of sweet, lovely crab on top of some baby greens. Simple, good. But this was much earlier in the year. Not sure about now. If it is still is avaliable, I'd recommend sitting outside and enjoying the bay view. (In a coat.)

                1. re: echo

                  Yes, the place next to Hog Island in the Ferry Bldg serves cracked crab.

                  If neecole is on NY time, maybe an *early* lunch at Swan would be a better bet -- not much wait if you can get there by 11:30.

                  Tadich is the best place for cioppino -- it's not hard to get a seat at the counter, and it's a great "old time" SF experience.

                2. Try The Beach Chalet on the great hywy--great fun Sundays when there is music out in back!---or perhaps Lou's at the Pier might have some good king crab---otherwise--go up to Humboldt Co

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: annmarieskitchen

                    First, the OP wants Dungeness Crab, not King Crab.

                    Second, are you saying that you've had the crab at Beach Chalet and Lou's and recommend them? I ask because I've read very few possible posts about BC and NONE about Lou's.

                    Can you give us more detail about your experiences at these two places?