Top 10 fancy crab cakes with an interesting twist
This Top 10 started with a query by the editor of AirTran's Go magazine.
I thought fancy crab cakes with an interesting twist would make a good Top 10, but I quickly realized that you can only make a crab cake interesting in three ways: How you season it, what you sauce it with, and what you serve with it.
I also realized that most of the list would come from fine-dining restaurants downtown because tourists want crab cakes. So no matter what kind of restaurant you are -- Italian, Asian fusion, genteel Southern -- if you're in the harbor area, you have to offer one. But you don't have to be boring about it.
Remember, these are fancy restaurant crab cakes. If you want to see the Top 10 list of crab cakes in general, click here.
And here's my list of Top 10 fancy crab cakes with an interesting twist: ...
* Black Olive in Fells Point. The olive oil-based homemade mayonnaise that comes with the mezze lump crab cake is what makes it special.
* Brasserie Tatin in Homewood. The kitchen has an interesting twist on the crab cake: lobster meat. It mixes the crab with lobster and pan-sears the result.
* Charleston in Harbor East. I had a delicious baby crab cake with avocado, Silver Queen corn and cilantro oil. The menu changes but I bet that's a recurring item.
* Della Notte in Little Italy. Two Maryland-style jumbo lump crab cakes, basil vinaigrette, tomato-olive relish.
* Fin in Fells Point. I recommend the crab cake trio appetizer: one miniature traditional, one Asian with sesame seeds and a soy-based sauce, one southwestern-spicy with a chipotle sauce.
* Gertrude's in the Baltimore Museum of Art. Besides the traditional crab cake, Gertrude's has a crab cake du jour, and there's a long list of sauces, like orange and chipotle, you can try with it.
* Pierpoint in Fells Point. Nancy Longo's famous smoked crab cake with a Silver Queen corn cake.
* Pisces in the Baltimore Hyatt. This was one of the best crab cakes I've had all year. The twist was horseradish sauce as an accompaniment.
* Red Maple in Mount Vernon. The Asian crab cakes with wasabi aioli, among others, have been on the ever-changing tapas menu in the past.
* Watertable in the Inner Harbor. A jumbo lump crab cake with citrus segments, greens, fried polenta, citrus sauce.
(Monica Lopossay/Sun photographer: Red Maple's lobster and lump crab cake with tandoori-spiced vegetable slaw and pomegranate drizzle)