As we all know, a riptide typically refers to a dangerous ocean current. And while Riptide By The Bay is really in Fells Point, Baltimore's Inner Harbor is often known as being the gateway to the Chesepeake Bay. While Riptide may not pose any immediate danger to you, it will attempt to pull you out of your ordinary day and entice you with local seafood from the Chesapeake, culinary innovation, and of course, entertainment. Voted Baltimore's Best Crab House in 2010 and Best Crab Dish in 2011 by Baltimore Magazine, Riptide By The Bay is certainly a place you should visit on your next trip to Fells Point. But the real question is -- do you stop in for the crab cakes? We took the plunge, so read along and find out!
Riptide By The Bay has a few crab cakes on offer. On the standard menu is the Signature High-Tide Crab Cake Sandwich, which is a 6 oz crab cake, applewood smoked bacon, and tartar sauce on a brioche bun, served with fries. On their seasonal menu (at the time of our visit) was the crab cake entree that comes with 2-4 oz crab cakes alongside fresh warm potato salad and arugula. Crab cakes do appear on other menu items, like the Crab Burger, so check your menu! This review is for the crab cake sandwich, minus the tartar sauce.
The crab cakes are made with local picked crab meat, blended with fresh herbs and citrus flavors. It's nice to see a crab cake that takes a different approach than the standard seafood seasoning. The crab meat is held together with a mayonnaise base and some bread to bind it all together. The brioche roll for the sandwich was firm but soft, able to support the crab cake without falling apart on you halfway through.
While the crab meat was mostly broken up, it had a nice sweetness to it that popped with flavor. Moisture levels were a little above average, even though this wasn't really a saucy cake. The bread in the binder was neutral in flavor, and gave the ensemble some structure, just not enough keep the cake from being too squishy. The lettuce and tomato accentuated nicely, but the bacon. Oh, the bacon. Don't get us wrong. We love bacon almost as much as we love crab cakes. But applewood smoked bacon has a very intense flavor that just overpowers everything and lingers long after your last bite.
If you did the unthinkable like we did and remove the bacon from the sandwich (consumed separately, of course!), then the crab cakes were very nice. The crab flavor bursts in your mouth, and the herbs and citrus flavors really accentuate the crab meat nicely. One of the hardest things about eating this sandwich, however, was keeping our crab cake from busting out of the sides of the bun. If the cake could be a little more solid, then it would work well as a sandwich. Otherwise, we might just stick with the entree the next time.
Have you tried Riptide By The Bay's Crab Cake Sandwich? Let us know about it in the comments!
- Restaurant Name: Riptide By The Bay
- Address: 1718 Thames St Baltimore, MD 21231
- Neighborhood: Fells Point
- Restaurant Type: Local
- Website: http://riptidebythebay.net/
- Review Date: 12/07/2013 5:56pm
- Atmosphere: Busy with a wait
- Item(s) Ordered: Signature High-Tide Crab Cake Sandwich
- Cooking Style: Pan Seared
- Other Styles Available: Yes
- Available by mail order?: No
- Price: 16.00
- Order Type: Sandwich
- Crab Content: Lump
- Filler: Average
- Spice: Average
- Overall Impression: Very Good
Rating (out of 5 crabs):