3 Fleur
Average check per person $15-$25
BreakfastNo Breakfast SundayNo Breakfast MondayNo Breakfast TuesdayNo Breakfast WednesdayNo Breakfast ThursdayNo Breakfast FridayNo Breakfast Saturday
LunchLunch SundayLunch MondayLunch TuesdayLunch WednesdayLunch ThursdayLunch FridayLunch Saturday
DinnerDinner SundayDinner MondayDinner TuesdayDinner WednesdayDinner ThursdayDinner FridayDinner Saturday

Crabby’s Seafood Shack

Madisonville: 305 Covington. 985-845-2348. Map.
Casual.
AE DS MC V
Website

ANECDOTES AND ANALYSIS
For those trying to cut down on their consumption of fried seafood (and the dietitians say that ought to be just about everyone in these parts), moving to the North Shore might be the easiest way. There never have been many seafood houses there, not even along the lakefront. That lists the relative importance of any good new fish joint that comes along. Even though Crabby’s Seafood Shack is a bit out of the way (in Madisonville), it fills up almost every day with those of use who can’t easily slake our seafood-platter hunger.

WHY IT’S NOTEWORTHY
One of the North Shore’s most instinctive and gregarious restaurateurs, Keith Young seems to have created Crabby’s in total contrast to his opulent, excellent steak house. But the two places have something nice in common: a friendliness that makes you love the place from the first moment. This extends far beyond glad-handing to encompass good cooking, generosity, and low prices. The board specials are particularly inviting.

WHAT’S GOOD The standard canon of casual seafood is here, from raw oysters on the half shell through boiled shrimp, crabs and crawfish in season, to fried fish and shellfish. Although seafood is obviously the specialty, they also run an interesting slate of neighborhood-style New Orleans eats: poor boy sandwiches, jambalaya, gumbo, and standards like red beans on their appointed days. All of this is good eating, typically served in portions too large to comfortably finish.

BACKSTORY
Keith Young, of the eponymous deluxe steakhouse a mile north, opened Crabby’s in 2013. It took over and heavily renovated Coffee’s Boiling Pot, an old, very modest seafood house. It was a great improvement, but the new restaurant managed to come through it with an unambiguous family-style environment. And a lot more parking, which was still much needed in Crabby’s early, hyper-popular days.

DINING ROOM
The L-shaped dining room angles around the bar and an open kitchen, all made more expansive by big windows. The walls are covered with neon and antique signs, not all of which have anything to do with food. It feels good and casual.

ONLINE MENU LOCATION

ESSENTIAL DISHES
Starters
»Raw oysters
»Boiled crawfish or shrimp in season
Dungeness crab cluster
»Seafood gumbo
Seafood chowder
House, caesar or spinach salad
»Fried calamari, marinara
»Fried frog legs
»Shrimp remoulade
Marinated or fried crab claws
Onion rings
»Panko-crusted stuffed shrimp or crab cakes
Fried pickles or okra
~
Entrees
»Fried catfish, shrimp, oysters or combo, with a side
»Panko-crusted stuffed shrimp
Frog legs
Fried seafood mega-basket
Jambalaya
Seafood stuffed potato
Entree salad with grilled chicken, boiled or grilled shrimp, fried oysters or crab cakes
Meatballs & spaghetti
»Crab cake, pasta & veggies
»Swamp basket (catfish, frog legs, jambalaya)
»Fried soft shell crab, shrimp bechamel & veggies
~
Poor Boy Sandwiches
»Fried shrimp, oyster, or catfish
Slow cooked roast beef
Meatball, red gravy
»Soft shell crab
Hamburger
»Hot sausage
Chicken, grilled or fried
~
Desserts
Banana pudding

FOR BEST RESULTS
Be sure to know about the daily specials. For example, how could any oyster lover pass up the six-bucks-a-dozen from the raw bar on recent Mondays?

OPPORTUNITIES FOR IMPROVEMENT
The fryer is the center of the kitchen, with almost no broiled or grilled items. The desserts could be tweaked.

FACTORS OTHER THAN FOOD
Up to three points, positive or negative, for these characteristics. Absence of points denotes average performance in the matter.

  • Dining Environment +1
  • Consistency +1
  • Service+1
  • Value +2
  • Attitude +2
  • Wine & Bar
  • Hipness
  • Local Color +1

 

SPECIAL ATTRIBUTES

  • Open Sunday lunch and dinner
  • Open Monday lunch and dinner
  • Open all afternoon
  • Oyster bar
  • Quick, good meal
  • Good for children
  • Easy, nearby parking
  • No reservations

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