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December 6, 2007

Of crab cakes and pizza



Call it the G & M Effect. This was actually first pointed out to me by chowsearch, although he didn't call it that. One reason G & M's crab cake has gotten so much press over the years is not only because it's good but because the Washington Post first called it a find, and then other media went there whenever they were making up "best" lists because you have to start somewhere, and now even national publications like Where the Locals Eat give it their "Best Crab Cake" award when they probably haven't tried many others.

It's not just G & M. The same crab cakes turn up again and again in the media best lists because you can only try a certain number, and you have to try the ones that people are talking about, or they'll wonder why those crab cakes weren't part of the story. ...

I was particularly struck by this with the pizza discussion yesterday. That's what I like about the blog. If I were writing a story about pizza places, I would go to Iggies and Matthew's and the usual suspects, and throw in some of the new places like Py. But there's no way I could get to as many as all of you listed yesterday. I haven't even heard of some of the ones that several readers liked best.
Posted by Elizabeth Large at 10:47 AM | | Comments (17)
Categories: Crab Cakes


The G&M effect has further ramifications. Washingtonians generally have a fondness for crabcakes that are 1. big, 2. golden, and 3. on a road trip. Baltimoreans, and other outside-the DC-Beltway Marylanders, rate crabcakes differently.

In my opinion, Baltimoreans are worse than Washingtonians about over-valuing "big".

A couple of weekends ago I had one of the best (albeit expensive) meals I've had in my life at Marcel's in DC. I couldn't help thinking at the time that Marcel's would never succeed in Baltimore...too many Baltimoreans would be whining about the portion sizes being too small.

Fresh crab Cake meat is a delight, but if you don’t have it available, you can use canned crab meat instead to make a host of delicious recipes. Some are so good that you won’t even miss having fresh crab.

A Washingtonian wouldn't know a good crab cake if it hit them in the head.

And only in Washington, DC would people enjoy spending an incredibly large sum of money for a very small plate of food.

I don't mind small portions, as long as it doesn't cost an arm and a leg.

OMG, Raisa is about to open another crab can of worms. Can't we all just get along? lol

The best crab cake without doubt is Fadiley's in the Lexington Market!

You have to stand up to eat it or take it with you, but it's the best thing since Nate's & Leon's!

Raisa, Raisa , Raisa, don't be silly. That pasturized, fishy, 'brain-gray' colored meat is not even close to fresh.

Just saw Hal Laurent's name in the blog, and wondered if he's the family friend we've known for years? I LOVE G&M but there are other worth-while crabcakes out there as well. Personal preference includes not only taste & size, but price & how convenient they are to obtain. I'm not driving to D.C. or anywhere far outside the beltway for expensive food when the same thing, or better, is 1/2 hr drive or less away from my house.

Just saw Hal Laurent's name in the blog, and wondered if he's the family friend we've known for years?

I know some Kidwells. Without a first name I don't know for sure if you're one of them. :-)

I am Pierre Kidwell of the Breton Kidwells, son of Jean Luc Jean-Gerard Kidwell, grandson of Jean Michel Pierre Kidwell, Visconte de Roux St. Viande.

Pierre, you're supposed to be stalking Sam Sessa. Did you take your meds yet this morning?

Koco's in Lauraville on Harford Rd. has the absolute best crab cake in Baltimore. Yes, it is big, but unlike the crab cakes at G&M's -these crab cakes are moist! They have a great CC special on Thursday nights, but make reservations, they get packed on Thursdays.

crab cake prices out here are crazy..i don't care how good they are!! you can keepem. in a place where crabs are to be so abundent,it's truly a shame!!

I just came across this blog. As a former resident of Maryland, the one thing I miss most is the Maryland Crab. No other crab meat makes as good a crab cake as the Maryland crab!.

This winter, I enjoyed the Stone Crab for the first time. What another delight!! But, alas, they are further south.

My dilemma: Go north for Maryland Crab or south for Stone Crab?

If you want a real crab cake, you have to go to Annapolis, or the eastern shore of Maryland. Try Davis's Pub, or a more upscale place like Lewnes' Steakhouse in Annapolis.

We have been trying to find Dave Gutman. He was the Chef at Buddy's on Elliott Street (closed), moved to Red Star in Fells Point and then moved to Red Fish in Canton for a brief time. In our opinion, his crab cakes were the best we have ever tasted. Do you have any idea if he is cooking in our area and if so, where?

I remember the Red Star crab cakes from about 2 years ago. They were the best. Jumbo lumps, no filler....and they didn't fall apart....never been able to duplicate that combination at home.
Too bad Dave is missing from the Baltimore scene

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About this blog
Richard Gorelick was appointed The Baltimore Sun's restaurant critic in September 2010. Before joining the paper staff fulltime, he contributed freelance criticism and features articles about food to area and regional publications. Along the way, he dispatched for short-distance trucking companies, shilled for cultural non-profits, and assisted in cognitive neurology research – never the subject, always the control.

He takes restaurants seriously but not himself, and his favorite restaurant is the one you love, too.

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