"It was many and many a year ago,
In a kingdom by the sea,
That a maiden there lived whom you may know
By the name of ANNABEL LEE;
And this maiden she lived with no other thought
Than to love and be loved by me."
-- Edgar Allan Poe, excerpt from Annabel Lee
In a town famous for the life and death of Edgar Allan Poe, it is here in Baltimore where he got married, lived out the rest of his days and was laid to rest. It is only fitting that in this town you would also find a restaurant dedicated to the celebration of Poe, Baltimore and Maryland, named after his last complete poem, Annabel Lee. But is their crab cake enough to make you fall in love, just as Poe did many years ago (although hopefully not as tragically)? Read on to find out!
When you first hear where Blue Hill Tavern is located, you don't quite know what to expect. On the edge of Canton, more commonly known as Brewers Hill, lies the old Natty Boh brewery (which has since been turned into business and office space). So to know the area means that you may not have a favorable picture in your mind. Then you turn up at the Blue Hill Tavern and are just blown away. Stark in contrast, this 2-level establishment shows that upscale knows no neighborhood. It's someplace that you'll just have to experience for yourself. As for ourselves, we know that where there's Boh, there are crab cakes. And the Blue Hill Tavern delivers. Read on to see if they were worth the trip!
So you may have asked yourself at one point, "Was there really a Bo Brooks?" Well, the answer is yes, kind of. Bo was a nickname, but he and two partners opened Bo Brooks in the East Baltimore neighborhood of Gardenville back in 1964. Bo no longer runs the restaurant, with the current owners having run the place since 1985. But they did move to Canton back in 2000, bringing their crab expertise down to the waterfront. With all of this history, we just had to put a rest to the question, "Does Bo know crabs?" Let's find out!
While situated near water and not on a dock (as the name may imply), Canton Dockside is one of Baltimore's newest crab houses. The outside patio is as you would expect with a crab house: wooden picnic tables that get laid down with brown paper before a tray of Maryland's finest are presented before you. Go inside, and the crab house feel takes on a more upscale feel. Family owned and operated, Canton Dockside was listed by the Baltimore Sun in 2011 as one of 15 crab houses that you need to visit this summer. If they know crabs, then one would figure they know crab cakes. Do they? Let's find out!
So, you're driving up Boston St in downtown Baltimore, or maybe you're just riding along on the Water Taxi, when suddenly, there on the corner, is a building shaped like a boat. Yeah, you know the one. Since 1978, the Captain James Landing has been serving crabs and quality seafood to residents and visitors alike. Steamed crabs always hit the spot, but if it's nice out, then you can just cross the street and enjoy them on the Crab Deck. But we're setting sail for crab cakes. Should we set sail, or abandon ship for them? Let's find out!