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Soft Shell Crab Season

xtian Jun 7, 2010 06:50 AM

June means one thing to me... the arrival of fresh soft shells.

I started my annual quest yesterday and was immediately dissapointed when I realized the Oyster House is closed on Sundays.

Headed over to the Standard Tap, where I was not dissapointed. For $12, we had a very basic, but meaty soft shell sandwich served between two peices of bread. It came with fries on the side and an aioli. Very tasty. Only dissapointment was that it was missing one of its claws (my favorite part of the crab).

Anyone else have any soft shells yet? Where should I try next?

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  1. b
    Bashful3 RE: xtian Jun 7, 2010 08:17 AM

    Fuji in Haddonfield is featuring them this week, and Matt Ito has some most unusual approaches to them: ie, divine. Go for his egg-based sauce.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Bashful3
      Bigley9 RE: Bashful3 Jun 10, 2010 06:23 AM

      Had them at Fuji last night - excellent in what was called a lemon garlic sauce (sauteed). I say "called" because it was a brownish red colored sauce. The crabs had been lightly dredged in flour. Perfect!

      1. re: Bigley9
        brightman RE: Bigley9 Jun 13, 2010 09:42 AM

        I had them at Fuji Friday night -fried, very tasty, but the sauteed are better.

    2. r
      rocknroll52 RE: xtian Jun 7, 2010 09:25 AM

      You are fortunate that you did not go to Oyster House to satisfy your soft shell crab craving. On a recent visit to the Oyster House, I was disappointed to find that my $24 entree of soft shell crab was just that, "one" soft shell crab (not plural). While it was delicious, I just felt the price of this entree and portion size were a total rip off.

      4 Replies
      1. re: rocknroll52
        barryg RE: rocknroll52 Jun 7, 2010 09:30 AM

        Did it come with any sides? I too have been disappointed with the price/portions at the new Oyster House. It's good for Happy Hour and that's about it--and even then, there are other places with better oyster selection for buck-a-shuck. I do like the bartenders at the Oyster House.

        1. re: barryg
          rocknroll52 RE: barryg Jun 7, 2010 09:32 AM

          The lone crab was served atop a smallish portion of fava beans.

        2. re: rocknroll52
          Bacchus101 RE: rocknroll52 May 19, 2011 09:04 AM

          I usually enjoy the Oyster House but at $24 for one soft shell crab they would fall out of favor very quickly! A TOTAL RIP OFF, INDEED! SHAME ON THEM! Normally a calm diner but that kind of thing would find me loudly not accepting the entree.

          1. re: Bacchus101
            bluehensfan RE: Bacchus101 May 19, 2011 09:34 AM

            $24 for one? That's insane!

        3. bluehensfan RE: xtian Jun 7, 2010 10:43 AM

          Great soft shells to be had (seriously) at Under the C in the food court of the Comcast Center. They are a whopping $6 or so a piece and if they are not busy and you ask nicely they may just sautee them up fresh for you. Alive one minute and on your plate five minutes later...how can it get any better or cheaper?

          If you want to spend a lot of $ there are other places in Kennett, Wilmington and nearby that I can tell you but they are better at under the C!

          9 Replies
          1. re: bluehensfan
            bluehensfan RE: bluehensfan Jun 14, 2010 03:29 AM

            They were actually only $5 a piece on Saturday...

            1. re: bluehensfan
              danbee1 RE: bluehensfan May 19, 2011 05:39 AM

              Quick, bluehen - where in Kennett or Wilmington!!! I've only seen them at the seafood market on 202 and would not feed them to my cows (if I had any cows).

              1. re: danbee1
                bluehensfan RE: danbee1 May 19, 2011 06:42 AM

                They usually serve them at Culinaria and (ick) Krazy Kat's every year. I know that the Half Moon Saloon and possibly SOvana Bistro have served them in the past.

                1812 Marsh Rd Ste 10, Wilmington, DE 19810

                Krazy Kats Restaurant
                Kirk Rd, Montchanin, DE 19710

                1. re: bluehensfan
                  Philly RE: bluehensfan May 19, 2011 09:18 AM

                  I've had them in season at Feby's; very good.

                  1. re: Philly
                    bluehensfan RE: Philly May 19, 2011 09:35 AM

                    How much do they go for and are they fried or sauteed (if you do't mind me asking!) Thanks!

                    1. re: bluehensfan
                      Philly RE: bluehensfan May 19, 2011 10:27 AM

                      I haven't stopped by yet this season, but I had them sauteed last year. I recall that I had two for less than $20. I've always found their prices to be very reasonable.

                      1. re: Philly
                        bluehensfan RE: Philly May 19, 2011 10:52 AM

                        Wow...good to know. I may have to give them a try. How is the other stuff at Feby's. I haven't been there in like 100 years. :)

                        1. re: bluehensfan
                          Philly RE: bluehensfan May 19, 2011 12:24 PM

                          My wife and I usually eat there whenever we are in town. We always start with a bucket, 50, steamers and then get whatever looks good as an entree. We both love their crabcakes, virtually no filler. We always get them grilled not fried. In fact, we always get the seafood grilled/sauteed versus fried. We're looking forward to our 8 day stay in Wilmington in August; I know we'll be at Feby's at least 3-4 times sitting at the bar enjoying seafood.

                          1. re: Philly
                            bluehensfan RE: Philly May 20, 2011 04:28 AM

                            Thanks for letting me know what to get!

            2. f
              fission1 RE: xtian Jun 7, 2010 10:44 AM

              I had the sof shells at Demitri's last night. The entree was 3 niced sized crabs with sides of escarole and rice for $24. The place is a dump but has great sea food.

              3 Replies
              1. re: fission1
                barryg RE: fission1 Jun 7, 2010 11:11 AM

                Which Dmitri's is a dump?

                1. re: barryg
                  bonappetite RE: barryg Jun 7, 2010 03:13 PM

                  interesting, i don't think i would call either location a dump, but i gues there's a new nolibs---is it perhaps a dump??

                  1. re: barryg
                    fission1 RE: barryg Jun 9, 2010 01:34 PM

                    I probably overstated. 3rd and Catherine looks like a lunchonette but always clean, though not particularly an atmosphere restaurant.

                2. joluvscards RE: xtian Jun 8, 2010 08:27 AM

                  We had fabulous soft shells at Matyson on Saturday. BTW the entire dinner was terrific.

                  1. r
                    rocknroll52 RE: xtian Jun 24, 2010 03:24 PM

                    Just had the soft shell crab po-boy sandwich served with chips on the lunch menu at Oyster House for $12---yum! Delicious and filling.

                    1. j
                      jaba RE: xtian Jun 26, 2010 05:44 AM

                      Just had an amazing soft-shell crab entree at Fork last night. 2 whole lightly-fried crabs for $28. They were probably the best I've had anywhere.

                      1. b
                        barryg RE: xtian May 18, 2011 05:29 AM

                        It's back.

                        They have soft shell crab tacos on special now at the South Philly Tap Room and they are incredibly good.

                        Who else has some good soft shell crab dishes?

                        6 Replies
                        1. re: barryg
                          Hungryin theBurbs RE: barryg May 18, 2011 06:06 AM

                          Matyson has a crab tasting menu this week. Haven't had it, but it looks great. Meme has also been tweeting about soft shells on special this week.

                          1. re: Hungryin theBurbs
                            bluehensfan RE: Hungryin theBurbs May 18, 2011 07:25 AM

                            Khyber Pass has them. And they are $5.99 at Under the C.

                          2. re: barryg
                            Philly Ray RE: barryg May 18, 2011 11:25 AM

                            Paradiso was offering a soft shell crab appetizer. I didn't get to try it, but they usually do things pretty well there.

                            1. re: barryg
                              brightman RE: barryg May 18, 2011 06:36 PM

                              Fuji has them three ways. I prefer the pan seared.

                              1. re: brightman
                                mmgth RE: brightman May 18, 2011 11:34 PM

                                Had softshell crabs at Dmitri's in No. Liberties last Thurs. (5-12-11). $15 for 2 . Delicious. With Dmitri's being BYOB and table sharing apps. dinner was a bargain.

                              2. re: barryg
                                cgarner RE: barryg May 19, 2011 09:44 AM

                                we had A-MAY-ZING soft shells at Docks in Atlantic City on Saturday. We went for a 5:00 seating especially because he read online that they had run out by 6:30 during that week!

                                We started with a dozen oysters and then the crabs

                                they were nicely seasoned and pan-fried. Full and juicy, two nice sized crabs... I was so enthralled, I dont' even remember what they were served with... (except the hubby ordered a siide of their delicious etherial french fried potato 'ribbons'.)

                                I'm drooling now thinking about that meal!

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