Weekly reviews of crab cakes around the MD and DC area

Ports of Call

Ports of Call Maryland Crab Cakes Ports of Call Maryland Crab Cakes Crab Cake Review

So you are staying in Annapolis, perhaps for a meeting or a conference.  There are lots of places to stay in this area.  But you, lucky traveler, got to stay in the Doubletree Annapolis.  Ah, yes.  Comfy bedding.  Attentive service.  Everything that you've come to expect from the Doubletree.  So, now, your thoughts turn to dinner.  Maybe you have a rental car, maybe you took a cab.  Annapolis Town Center is right across the street.  Maybe you could walk.  Or, maybe, just maybe, you could hit up the hotel restaurant.  Maybe, perhaps, Ports of Call.  But every other time you have patrionized the hotel restaurant, you always wondered "Why?" afterwards.

Well, let me tell you about Ports of Call. The chefs there are well versed in local cuisine.  Unbeknownst to you, the Executive Chef has won many honerable acheivements, such as 1st place for his Vegetable Crab Soup at the MD Seafood Festival 3 times.  Or that he has taken 1st place for his Cream of Crab soup in the very same festival 4 different times.  And his Executive Sous Chef?  A food champion himself with the American Culinary Federation.  So they have the staff all set to prepare you a gourmet meal without leaving the premise.  With this culinary dynamic duo at the helm, one would think crab cakes should be a slam dunk.  'Nuff said (as they say in the old Adam West 'Batman' series).  So did they?  Read on and find out!

The crab cake entree is comprised of two jumbo lump crab cakes, roasted potatoes and corn salsa.  Also available is the sandwich, which is the very same crab cake served on a potato roll with house made tartar sauce.

Upon breaking into the first crab cake, one would notice that the crab is mostly broken up.  The flavor of the crab is pretty decent, but one or two points happen to be a bit "crabby".  Not much on the spicing end, just mostly the crab flavor letting it speak for itself.  The cakes turned out to be a bit thin, so while they had a decent amount of moisture to them, they could have had a bit more, as the crab on the outer parts of the cake were a bit dried out.   But that might come down to the cooking itself.  (More on this later)

There isn't much to the binding or filler.  Mostly crab, and a tad bit of breadcrumb and spices to hold it all together.  The crust from pan frying adds more flavor to the cake than it should, and not necessarily in a good waym as the cakes were a bit too fried on one side.    This crust added more to the flavor profile than the actual crab did.  Flip the cake over and attack it from the not-so-charred side, and the crab flavor was quite enjoyable.

Overall, not a bad crab cake.  But jumbo lump crab cakes should be just that -- jumbo lump, not broken up pieces of jumbo lump.  The uneven cooking also threw the flavor profile off, resulting in a potentialy decent crab cake not turning out as good as it could.  The crab flavor was there in the mix, but the execution hindered the final result this time around.  The potatoes and corn salsa weren't able to save the dish, as the salsa had too much onion to it, and the potatoes were just that -- potatoes.

Have you tried Ports of Calls' Maryland Crab Cakes?  Tell us about it in the comments!

Ports of Call on Urbanspoon

Additional Info

  • Restaurant Name: Ports of Call
  • Address: 210 Holiday Ct Annapolis, MD 21401
  • Neighborhood: Parole
  • Restaurant Type: Local
  • Review Date: 12/12/2011 8:54pm
  • Atmosphere: Moderate
  • Item(s) Ordered: Maryland Crab Cakes
  • Cooking Style: Fried
  • Other Styles Available: No
  • Available by mail order?: No
  • Price: 25.95
  • Order Type: Double Platter
  • Crab Content: Jumbo Lump
  • Filler: Minimal
  • Spice: Minimal
  • Overall Impression: Average
  • Rating (out of 5 crabs):