What’s the one question a Maryland restaurant is sure to get? Right after “Where are you located?” it’s “How are your crab cakes?” Of course, what’s a restaurant to say: “Oh our crab cakes aren’t so good.” Yah right!
I’ve tasted them from Ocean City to Garrett County and just about all of them told me their crab cakes were the best. Not possible to begin with. Yes, many have crab cakes that are very good, but others should just take them off the menu.
My latest crab cake tasting was at By the Docks, 3321 Eastern Blvd, Middle River. It is owned and operated by the Kanellopoulos and Korologos family. The doors were first opened in 2005 and after it was run by another family they took it back in June 2015. They are connected to the same family that operates the Double T diners. And you probably know how successful they are.
There’s seating for about 215 in three rooms, including a room upstairs you can use as a private party/meeting room. They operate seven days a week serving lunch and dinner with brunch until 2 pm on Saturday and Sunday. Friday nights you can enjoy entertainment in the lounge. Plenty of free parking, it’s definitely casual, though white table cloths adds some distinction, and I would suggest reservations on weekends.
Okay, let’s get to the crab cake. Baltimore Magazine said in was Baltimore’s best, along with the crab soup and dip. The minimum size is nine ounces, but since they free scoop, the sizes can be different.
Tuesday is crab cake night; I’ll meet you there. The special consists of three courses, salad, crab cake and comp crème brulee. Wines are also half price that night. Also that night there’s a shrimp and pasta special.
Monday is lobster night, with fish on Wednesday and steak or ribs on Thursday.
Of course, you can also order pasta, shrimp, oysters, combination platters, steaks, chops, ribs, soups, appetizers, chicken, sandwiches and the king, called “Jewels of the Sea” – a 4 oz lobster tail, crab cake, jumbo shrimp and scallops. The folks at my table sampled almost everything on the menu. The consensus: They’ll be back.
Now for the main reason I truly like By the Docks, food aside. The fact that it is locally owned and operated. That generally means someone from the family is always there, which in my experience means a well run business.
When you do go mention my name. It wont get you anything, but I’d like it!