Kooper's Tavern first opened their Fells Point location in memory of their yellow lab, Kooper. Connected with Woody's Rum Bar and Sláinte (which the CCR has visited), Kooper's builds their reputation on great food, excellent service, and, of course, plentiful beverages. You may have also seen their Chowhound running around Baltimore. It's their food truck that allows them to bring their famous burgers to different locations around the city. Which, by the way, Kooper's burgers were voted Baltimore's Best Burger in 2011 by Baltimore Magazine, and are listed by Zagat 2014 as some of the "Must-try burgers across the country." So with all of this special attention to beef, we wonder if they can apply the same passion to our favorite crabby crustacean. Read on to see how everything went!
Kooper's Tavern offers crab cakes as a sandwich or as an entree (single or double). Both are served with cajun remoulade and fries, although the sandwich adds a pickle, and the entree includes their tidewater slaw. At the time of our review, the single entree was the same price as the sandwich, so it's just a matter of if you want yours with or without bread. In addition, the entree does not make mention of including the remoulade, so if that's not your thing, be sure to ask for it on the side, or left off.
The crab cakes are made up of mostly broken crab pieces, although some small lumps managed to survive. All of that crab meat is bound together with egg and bread, although the amount of breading wasn't outrageous, so we won't be calling it Maryland style. All of that crabby goodness was broiled to perfection, and topped with the remoulade.
Overall, this was a pretty good crab cake. The flavor of the crab meat was good, and the cake had a decent amount of moisture to it, but the binder had a chalky texture to it. The binder at least tasted lightly of bread, but the texture was distracting and not very pleasant. The cajun remoulade was relatively flavorless, so even if you don't like it, it's not the end of the world if it made its way on your plate.
We'd say that the binder needs either a touch of mayonnaise or another egg to fix the chalkiness, and more Old Bay would definitely help. The flavor of the crab, which was good, can only take you so far before things get to be a bit monotone. Either that, or maybe this is one jumbo lump crab cake that is better suited to be on a sandwich instead of an entree, so you don't notice these things quite as much. Or hopefully the binder mixture was off and doesn't normally have the texture that it does. The crab meat still tasted good, so your experience may vary.
Have you tried Kooper's Tavern's crab cakes? Share your experience with us in the comments!
- Restaurant Name: Kooper's Tavern
- Address: 1702 Thames St Baltimore, MD 21231
- Neighborhood: Fells Point
- Restaurant Type: Local
- Website: http://www.kooperstavern.com/
- Review Date: 02/16/2014 4:12pm
- Atmosphere: Moderate
- Item(s) Ordered: Crab Cake Entree
- Cooking Style: Broiled
- Other Styles Available: Yes
- Available by mail order?: No
- Price: 16.00
- Order Type: Single Platter
- Crab Content: Jumbo Lump
- Filler: Average
- Spice: Minimal
- Overall Impression: Average
Rating (out of 5 crabs):