On a recent Friday evening I was in Baltimore for a fundraising race, but it got canceled because of a thunderstorm. Needing someplace to eat, I started searching. It took a bit of driving, but eventually I found Skipjack’s Restaurant and Sport’s Bar in northern Baltimore, on Route 1 just south of the Beltway. Turns out they have the best crab cakes I’ve ever had.
I arrived at Skipjack’s around 8:00 and the parking lot was packed. However, when I got inside the dining area was sparser than I expected. There were plenty of people around, but nowhere near as many as the number of cars in the parking lot. I’m not sure where everybody was; perhaps at the bar, but that area did not strike me as big enough to hold that many people.
I was promptly seated when I walked in. All the tables are set up for crab fest style eating. Many people were getting that: fresh whole crab steamed which has to cracked open to eat. But by that point I was hungry and my crab cracking skills are not the greatest, so I quickly decided to go with crab cakes instead. There are other items on the menu as well, including burgers, po-boys, fried fish, and ribs. The people at the table next to me got some wings, and they did look good. But I could not in good conscience go to a crab house and not get some crab.
The crab cakes come in two variety’s: lump crab cake (boiled or fried) or crab fluff. The fluff starts with a lump crab cake, dips it in a tempura batter and then fried until golden. The fluff intrigued me, so that is what I got.
As I said earlier, these are the best crab cakes I have ever had. They consist of large pieces of crabs with absolutely no filler! Fantastic! The crab cakes were served with three dipping sauces: ketchup, cocktail, and tarter. Both the tarter and the cocktail sauce are home made, but the latter that blew me away. Made with copious amounts of horseradish, the cocktail sauce has a nice, sharp tang to it that I just loved. It complemented the crab extraordinarily well.
All entrees come with a choice of two sides. The choices include fries, onion rings, cole slaw, and green beans with bacon. I decided on Brussels sprouts and hush puppies. Both were excellent, but the hush puppies are worthy of special notice. They tasted fresh out of the oven, as they were warm. Furthermore, they were quite tender and had a spring to them. Good job!
After dinner, I had room for dessert. While there are four options on the menu, there were only two that night: an oreo pie or a brownie sundae. As I already have a go to spot for brownie sundaes, I decided on the oreo pie. When it came out, it did not look home made. But surprisingly, it tasted like it was. I don’t think Skipjack’s made it themselves, but however they handled it, the pie was fresh tasting. I also like that it came out warm. It made for a good pie.
As Skipjack’s is a bar, they have many options on the drink menu. Unfortunately, I did not record the full list. They, of course, had a variety of beers. In addition to that, there was about a half dozen cocktails, include several mules and perhaps a mojito. I had a margarita. It was fine, but not as good as what you would get at a Mexican restaurant. The next time I’m there, I’ll try a different cocktail or go with one of the beers.
Skipjack’s has the look and feel of a dive bar. The service was friendly. It took a little bit for them to take my order, but given the crowd that was not unexpected. Once I gave it, my food and drink came out very quickly. My waiter checked with me several times to see if I needed anything, so I was pleased with the service. All in all, it was a fun dining experience.
If you want crab, Skipjack’s is the place to go. In addition to the location in northern Baltimore, they also have restaurants in Glen Burnie and Middle River.