Where to go for dungeness crab
I've spent some time reading recent threads of "where to eat" recommendations for Seattle (and have some great general ideas for restaurants based on those) but haven't seen any suggestions of THE place to go to eat fresh dungeness crab. Brother-in-law describes it as "ambrosial," better than Maine lobster or even our (Maryland native) beloved Chesapeake blue crabs. I have to try it! I'll be in Seattle in 2 weeks and would appreciate recommendations for best places to get fresh dungeness. I'll be staying in a hotel, so buying fresh and taking it home to cook is not an option. Thanks!!
There are many places you can go - some good places that will provide different kinds of experiences are:
If you are here on August 24th (Wed) Blueacre is doing their annual Dungeness crab boil. For $50 you get two pounds of crab, a tomato salad, keiebasa, potatoes, corn and a peach cobbler. Reservations are required. If you are not here on that date they also have good crab on the menu daily- but it is spicy. http://blueacreseafood.com/events/cra...
In addition to Etta's which is mentioned in the thread posted below, right next door is another Tom Douglas place - Seatown, which has dungeness crab done well
Another fun idea is Taylor Shellfish in the Melrose Market (just East of Downtown). The Market is a cool place to look around and although Taylor is mainly a take home market they also have a few tables in the place and will happily clean the fresh crab for you to eat there- they usually have oyster stew as well. It is a fun place just to munch http://www.taylorshellfishfarms.com/s... or you could take it as a picnic.
The An Family recipes are a protected secret...complete with a secret kitchen in each restaurant where the sauces are mixed. In fact, some 10 years ago, I thought they were coming out with a Secret Kitchen line of sauces. Sadly, haven't found anything even close to it up here.
But if you find those garlic noodles, I'd drive 2 hours to get to them.
Anthony's Homeport at the Shilshole marina used to have all-you-can eat dungenous crab feeds on Sunday afternoon/evening. I can't tell from their website whether they still do.
The last time I went, which was probably a dozen years ago, it was no more than $20, and you could get them chilled or steamed. They weren't great at serving them steamed, but cold they were fantastic.
re: not the bad Steve
I went to Anthony's in Kirkland two years ago and they still had it, but it wasn't as great as I had remembered it in the past. First, the price they now charge (can't remember exactly) made it less of a deal, and secondly, you could kinda tell it was the old crab they were getting rid of.
Anyone ever those crab cocktails at Jack's in the sanitary market? That could have some potential.
Buy a crab (ask the fishmonger to crack it, if this was not already done)
Buy a stick of butter and a plain ramekin at the grocery store.
Buy a lemon.
You might want to consider getting a little fork at the store, but way bigger fun might be had in a
fork-shopping trip to a thrift-store, where you might even pick up some crackers, or pliers, in
case you want to pursue the delicious hiding bits.
Many options follow:
> Ask the grocer if you can melt your purchase in the staff microwave.
> Go back to the hotel and ask the concierge if you can use the staff microwave.
> Go past the maid's station and ask if you can use the staff microwave (heh).
> Go back to your room and melt the butter in the microwave the hotel has thoughtfully provided.
> Go back to your room and put the butter in the little coffee carafe the hotel has thoughtfully
provided and push the button. Be prepared to exercise patience.
Once you have melted butter, use something sharp to make a hole in the lemon squeeze the lemon
juice into the ramekin of melted butter.
Unwrap the crab.
Wash your hands.
(some might opt here for another microwave session, to heat the crab, others not)
Crack/peel the crab joints as needed.
Tug out the meat
Dip in butter.
If all else fails, get a tiny jar of mayo and dip the cold crab there.
I believe you can go to Jack's Fish Spot or those fish counters in Pike Place and they'll steam you a crab fresh. Similar to what you would find at San Francisco's Fisherman's Wharf.
If you go the grocery route, Uwajimaya, Ranch 99 and Asian Markets will have Live Dungeness Crab for $5 a pound.
If schedule, budget, permits, Salty's Brunch Buffet features Chilled Dungeness Crab Legs.
but if you end up going to Crab Pot... well... we just can't be friends. I mean I'll still act cordial and and be polite, but definitely not Christmas Card List. =)
Jack's Fish Spot
1514 Pike Pl Ste 2, Seattle, WA 98101
Salty's On Alki Beach Seafood Grill
1936 Harbor Ave SW, Seattle, WA 98126
Thanks all. Ran out of time due to Hurricane Irene (needed to leave Seattle sooner than scheduled), so I bought a couple of cooked, chilled crabs at the market, packed to travel. Cleaned then and cracked them myself (crab anatomy is the same, whether it's Dungeness or blue) and served them chilled with cold mustard-mayo dipping sauce. They were good, but I was surprised that they are the reverse of the blue crab in terms of where the flavor is--the blues have their best, most flavorful meat in the backfin, less so in the claws and skinny legs. The body meat of the Dungeness is pretty mild in flavor, the claws and legs are sweeter. Next time I will try some of your suggestions for freshly cooked and chilled crab in Seattle and see if absolute freshness makes a big difference. Post scriptum: ironically, our local (Maryland) Costco had Dungeness crabs for sale when we got back.