Art's Crab Shak, Oakland
We went there tonight for the first time. Had driven by for years.
Shared a medium bucket of crab for $42. And it was good! Nicely cooked. Drenched in a peppery/lemon-y garlic butter and mushrooms. Garlic bread on the side. I had a Corona, my husband a Heineken. By the end we were cheerfully covered in garlic butter, made good use of wash 'n dri's they provide.
A funky place--you have to pay before they'll bring you your food (presumably people would eat and leave w/out paying?).
Wanted to try the hush puppies and collard greens and okra--another time. Curious re other folks' experience w/ those sides and anything else on the menu.
You know, I'm a New Englander. If you were to ask me if a lobster were fresh or frozen, I would know from one bite w/ 100% certainty (I'd know exactly how fresh--eg. if it came from a frisky critter or one that was on its last legs, so to speak).
Crab, I'm a novice. It was succulent, tender--good flavor, although w/ all that lemon-pepper-garlic-butter sauce, subtleties surely get lost. I would imagine frozen wouldn't have been as good. That said they obviously serve crab year round. Think we need an expert here!
We haven't been in a while. Never had the crab. My husband says the catfish is the best ever. Hush puppies are close in taste to what I grew up with in the South. But they are small. We are used to eating two large ones and their's I eat about 6 or more.
I love the family feel of Art's. The pay first surprised us. But look at the neighborhood, it is a fringe area. I am sure people eat and "run".
just like you, sundeck sue, i was driving past it the other nite for the zillionth time, and was curious enough to make a mental note to see if any of the 'hounders had commented on it, and voila!
how uncanny. will have to give it a try.
ps - we were taking a slow route home after a lovely dinner at Miss Pearl's Jam House.