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Crabs in Boston?

I'm looking for a Baltimore-style restaurant in Boston where you get a pile of crabs, a mallet, and a knife and you smash the crabs open to get at the meat. A very informal but great way to down 6-12 crabs at a sitting. Are there any such restaurants in Beantown?

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  1. not in Boston.

    1. I did enjoy some stone crab claws at Neptune the other night. I'd forgotten how much work it is to get the meat out of those little beggars. I found myself wishing I had a hammer.

      1. I assume you mean one like Buddy's Crabs and Ribs on the waterfront in Annapolis, MD or one of the Crab houses out in the woods along Chesapeake Bay.

        This is one concept that is totally missing in Boston. I think some chain used to do an annual crab feast but I can't remember which one-- Legal or Skipjacks or one of those.

        I go into crab house withdrawal and have to cook my own crabs a few times a year. A summer day, on the roof deck with platters full of cooked crabs, a cooler full of beer and wine, newspapers full of shells covering the table, good friends to provide the great conversation for a couple of hours of pickin' and munchin'-- is a perfect way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

        We buy our crabs at the Super 88 and have traded up to Dungeness crab for the past few years. They give you more meat for the work you put into them. Lately they have been very pricey because of an oil spill on the west coast. Lets hope the supply recovers in time for summer feasting.

        J Hook & Sons can also supply crabs of all kinds if you are a purest.

        1 Reply
        1. re: BostonZest

          Skipjack's used to do this, but probably doesn't anymore.

        2. My16 y.o. son smashed crabs at Summer Shack in Cambridge a few months ago with a mallet. He had a blast. I believe the couple sitting near us asked to be moved to another table! It may have been from the specials board that day though.

          1. Summer Shack in Alewife advertises it on Wednesday nights. Haven't been but am planning to go at some point.

            1 Reply
            1. re: mollydingle

              oooh! has anyone been to this?

            2. The Barking Crab substitutes a sizable rock for the hammer, but the experience is similar. Satisfyingly Early Man.

              1 Reply
              1. re: adverb

                Perhaps Oog would like this?

                I assume these aren't those fancy crabs you can get in Miami and Chicago?

              2. Not exactly what you are looking for but one of the best crab dishes I have had in Boston was at East Ocean City in Chinatown. If you order the large (and expensive) live King Crabs they chop it up into pieces and then very quickly flash fry it. Then the crab is tossed with a very tasty chili, salt and pepper and served immediately. This preparation is very delicious with the combination of the sweet crab meat and the spicy salt and chili pepper.

                1 Reply
                1. re: RoyRon

                  They also do this with Dungeness crab, and it's one of the dishes we always order when we go to East Ocean City for dinner. They have one of the best versions of this that I've tasted locally.

                2. not a rest. but the pine river fish market in revere steams up barrels of them most every day but you got bring them home n smash em