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Best time of year for king crab?

Hi everyone, I'm planning on bringing my folks up to Vancouver for some king crab probably at one of the chinese dim sum palaces like Kirin, Sun Sui Wah, Fisherman's Terrace etc.. I think I remember the peak of the season is mid-March. Is that right? Does anyone remember from last year?

Also any recommendations on a venue?

thanks!

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  1. That's right - the peak of crab season is mid-March. Add Empire Chinese (Alexandra), Jade (also Alexandra), Sea Harbour to your list.

    6 Replies
      1. re: fmed

        Cool, thanks fmed. Do you know if it's starting to ramp up yet, or still a couple weeks? Guess it's just about time to start scouting the papers for ads...

        1. re: shmooerific

          I haven't seen any signs of ramping up. Give it a couple of weeks.

          1. re: fmed

            I'll be visiting in 2 weeks. Enough ramping time to do a rampage on the King Crab? :D

            1. re: fmed

              Kings down to $12/lb at T&T now. But it can be a challenge to find one with all its legs, which is pretty important since that's what you are paying for with king crab. One leg missing = 17% of your crab missing.

          2. re: fmed

            Which would be your recommendation for first time dim sum king crabbers? How many people do you need to make the meal worthwhile?

          3. King Crab season 2012 has started at the usual suspects.

            2 Replies
            1. re: farman

              where specifically ?
              Not yet at Dung Sin Chin on east hastings

              1. re: knight

                Uhm, here's a short and incomplete list:
                Sea Harbour
                Shun Feng
                Jade
                Congee House
                Fisherman's Terrace
                Bing Sheng
                Empire Chinese
                Red Start
                Kirin
                Sun Sui Wah
                Sandy La
                Golden Swan
                Venice Garden

            2. Just had the king crab at SSW for $16.80 p/lb. It was wifey's first time. Had it prepared 3 way. Added a peapod stem sauteed with garlic....we are stuffed. Thank you Vancouver!

              5 Replies
              1. re: mojospapi

                So just out of curiosity how many were you and what was the bill? Just asking because I want to introduce my cousin to it (1st year in BC) and because I recently became a student again so money is tight. Thanks!

                1. re: starlady

                  starlady, we had the first AKC this year at Dynasty (Broadway/Willow-ish). Paid a premium price of $19/lb so not the lowest you can find. (You can get AKC for $11/lb at some places). We also had about 5-6 other dishes. It came to $60pp all in.

                  If you have four people in your group, you can eat for $40pp.

                    1. re: starlady

                      I should mention that there were 6 of us and the crab was a 10 pounder.

                  1. re: starlady

                    Just me and the lady, the bill came up to $200 tip/tax included. My coworker just had AKC in Richmond for $11 p/lb. The one I had was 7lbs. They average 6 to 12lbs. It's still early in the season. Enjoy it while you can. Jealous of you folks over there. So you know how lucky you are, back here in Boston, it's $31 p/lb in a restaurant and $22 p/lb in a grocery store.

                2. I visited an old roommate after she moved to Kenai. On the way home from the airport swhe stopped ant this Denny's looking place and ordered us the beer-batter fried king crab legs- OMG- sacrilege, I thought, coming from the desert and being very purist about my seafood. Well, they were absolutely awesome, we went back twice more for them in the week I was there. At the time she had her own crab pot- sign of the times, it was the mid-1970s and there were still king crabs in shallow water there. Sigh.

                  1. I have a friend visiting in town this week and she really wants to go for king crab. She just wants a simple, steamed preparation (maybe with the wine and egg white?). Usually I have it with a whole table of family and we usually go somewhere like Kirin... but this time we're only 3 people. Which place might be best for us to go?

                    What's the recommendation for weight... 9 lb crab for 3 people? My family always tries to get a bigger crab because they think the meat is better on larger crabs.

                    Do restaurants serve king crab at lunch? I've only ever ordered it at dinner before. Maybe lunch might be overzealous... we'd spend the rest of the day in a food coma.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: twinkienic

                      Nine lbs is about right. The shell to meat ratio would be too high below that. I've had AKC for lunch - albeit on a weekend. Best to phone ahead as some places (especially those that serve dim sum) don't serve AKC for lunch.

                      twinkie try Bing Sheng on Renfrew and Nanaimo (I think it is $14/lb there right now). I don't know about AKC service during lunch.

                    2. Just called a few places yesterday... There seems to be an uptick in prices.
                      It's now $18.80/pound at SunSuiWah and $12.80 at Empire Seafood.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: midorimonsta

                        The supply is smaller this year. It could be a short season.

                        1. re: fmed

                          Yep, looks like the season is almost done now, price up to almost $16 /lb at T&T now, and that's for crabs with 2 legs missing. I got my yearly 7 lb-er, shared between 3 people, dismantled (quite a job) and cooked myself last week when it was $12 /lb. I was worried I'd bought in too early and it would go down to $9 like some years, but not this year I guess. 7 lb was fine for 3 people, almost too much crab.

                        1. I've been noticing some restaurants are charging a flat rate for AKC - how would you know exactly how large your crab would be? Is that something new this year?

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: Quattrociocchi

                            I don't do the crab thing but some friends went (one a food weasel) to Lucky Tao last night and were quite complimentary. Apparently it's homestyle and non-pretentious. Their dinner worked out to $41 a head including tip. The crab price was $13.95 per lb cooked two ways and then they paid extra for the noodles and rice which amounted to an additional $10/12 each per plate.