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Seafood Restaurant in Baltimore

Katzo Jun 25, 2008 10:50 AM

Looking for recommendations for a seafood restaurant nearby Camden Yards. Small group of guys from NYC going to a ballgame for a low-key bachelor party. The bachelor doesn't eat meat or shellfish (but does eat fish), so we're looking for a place with good seafood (and crabs for the rest of us).

Preferably someplace relatively nice, price not a huge issue, but we will be going to a night game after dinner so we'll be dressed somewhat casually.

Any recommendations would be appreciated.

Also any recommendations for good bars in the area for after the game, for a bunch of guys in their early 30's.


  1. h
    hon Jun 25, 2008 11:26 AM

    Mamas on the Half Shell in Canton, no crabs but great crab cakes!

    1. rpb Jun 25, 2008 03:26 PM

      I'd recommend Nick's Fish House for the before game meal. A fun place on the water a quick cab ride from Camden Yards. They've got a website that should give you a good idea of what they offer. If you're hoping more for walking distance, I suppose you could go the tourist route and hit Phillips at the Inner Harbor, but I really think with your group you'd enjoy yourselves more at Nick's. As for after the game, you can wander over to Federal Hill and take your pick of bars around Cross Street. Mother's, Magerk's, Stalking Horse, Ryleigh's are all good choices, but you'll pass plenty of options that should do you guys well.

      4 Replies
      1. re: rpb
        JonParker Jun 25, 2008 06:49 PM

        I wouldn't recommend Phillips to the neighborhood rats, but Nicks is definitely the closest for crabs. Obrykis is another choice that's fairly nearby.

        Bars are not a problem. Federal Hill is full of them. Ryelighs and Dog Pub are the ones I go to, but VMMV. It's no problem to walk from bar to bar until you find something that suits.

        1. re: JonParker
          KAZ Jun 26, 2008 05:46 AM


          1. re: KAZ
            baltoellen Jun 26, 2008 06:07 AM

            I think Jon meant YMMV: Your mileage may vary.

            1. re: baltoellen
              JonParker Jun 26, 2008 07:09 AM

              Right. Thanks.

      2. v
        venera Jun 25, 2008 06:14 PM

        You may want to consider Johns Stevens. While some have complained of decline in quality compared to recent years, it's got a great bar with a local vibe where you can order some great steamed seafood: clams, shrimp, mussels. No crabs, though. They may have some good fish dishes. I haven't been there in a while, perhaps someone who had been can recommend something.

        About 6 houses down from Johns Steven's is the Wharf Rat. Great bar, homemade brews, very casual, and a very Bawlmer vibe. Great beer, I remember their Ace Pear Ale very fondly.

        5 Replies
        1. re: venera
          JonParker Jun 25, 2008 06:51 PM

          Neither of those are that close to Camden Yard.

          1. re: JonParker
            venera Jun 26, 2008 07:44 AM

            A short cab ride, or a long walk. But still, better than the slim pickins near the ballpark...

          2. re: venera
            kelarry Jun 25, 2008 09:20 PM

            Ace Pear Cider?

            1. re: kelarry
              venera Jun 26, 2008 07:45 AM


              Good stuff. :) Now I have a total hankering for it!!! And it's not even noon!

              1. re: venera
                kelarry Jun 27, 2008 12:02 AM

                Oliver's doesn't make Ace Pear Cider. Ace does. Wharf Rat just keeps it on continuously. You should try Blackthorn Cider. Apple flavors, but really crisp & not overly sweet. YUM.

          3. baltoellen Jun 25, 2008 06:52 PM

            I'm not sure it's totally possible to get what you're after. There aren't many places where you can get decent fish and decent crabs, and be near the Yards. In fact, there aren't many places in the entire metro area where you can get decent fish and decent crabs. It's generally one or the other. I can think of one place that has both, but it's no where near the stadium, and it's very working-class, so doesn't fit your parameter of "relatively nice."

            Also, eating crabs is time consuming....so, I would make sure you schedule at least two hours for this.

            You may need to compromise a bit. Say, not so close to Camden Yards, or good seafood but without crabs, or if say that the food matters more than atmosphere, (or the atmpsphere over the food) it would be easier to find a place for you and your friends.

            9 Replies
            1. re: baltoellen
              crackers Jun 25, 2008 08:06 PM

              BaltoEllen is right. If you plan to crack crabs you are talking a couple of hours. And factor in the time to get there and back, plus probably needing to change your clothes before you go to the ball park since it's a pretty messy undertaking. And also plan to smell like Old Bay and crab for the rest of the night. You might want to consider one of the Inner Harbor chains like McCormick's and Schmick's and go for crab cakes and local rockfish if they have any.

              1. re: crackers
                baltoellen Jun 26, 2008 05:33 AM

                I happen to like Eau de Old Bay! ;-)

                1. re: baltoellen
                  Katzo Jun 26, 2008 06:41 AM

                  OP here, thanks everyone. So I'm willing to give up the crabs and stick to a place near the ballpark that has decent fish and shellfish. Would hope to avoid chains like legal seafood and McCormick's & Schmick's unless they are the best bet.

                  If we go to Nick's, is it an easy cab ride to the ballpark? Easy meaning quick ride plus not a problem finding a cab...


                  1. re: Katzo
                    jfish Jun 26, 2008 07:01 AM

                    I recommend Ryleigh's Oyster Bar on Cross Street. Walkable to the ballpark. If you are coming on a Tuesday they have their Shore special with $2 crabs (still in effect?) and other goodies. Their food is above average although I have never ordered fin fish there.

                    Nick's would also be fine. It is on the water and I like their fish and chips but never had their crabs. Nick's would be a short cab ride however I am not sure that cabs are easy to find.

                    1. re: Katzo
                      hon Jun 26, 2008 07:09 AM

                      It's a fun place to drink on the water but I cannot recommend the food, I have eaten there 4 times and the food was mediocre at best (one time the fish in my fish and chips was bad and reaking of ammonia) and I have heard from several people that the crabs are usually light and definately reheated, 2 huge no nos. You would be way better off eating at Ryleighs in Federal Hill for seafood and you can also walk to the park from there.

                      1. re: hon
                        hon Jun 26, 2008 07:13 AM


                        1. re: hon
                          igrowveggies Jun 26, 2008 09:01 AM

                          I completely agree with that entire statement...Nick's for crabs but Ryleigh's for seafood. What about LP Steamers??? You could sit on the deck, crabs are huge and good...

                          1. re: igrowveggies
                            hon Jun 26, 2008 09:22 AM

                            Did you read what I said about the crabs at Nicks, I am not recommending them. And also LP Steamers reheats their crabs and has a ridiculous price structure.

                            1. re: igrowveggies
                              baltoellen Jun 26, 2008 09:35 AM

                              LP Steamer's crabs are absolutely awful, but then the OP could take water taxi to Inner Harbor and walk to Camden Yards. And, as bad as their crabs are, their fried non-crab food is even worse.

                              What they have, though, is a really fantastic deck. I also don't think the atmosphere is what the OP is at all after.

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