Foodie Friday: Crabs, Crushes and Sno-Balls

With summer time in full effect, what better time to introduce our top picks for the best crabs, crushes, and sno-balls in the Baltimore area. We’ve searched near and far and come up with our list of the best places to grab these Maryland treats. So what are you waiting for? Grab your friends and family and head on down!

Best Crabs

Hidden away in a residential neighborhood along several windy back roads in Annapolis, MD you will find one of the best places to eat crabs, Cantler’s Riverside Inn.  The setting has all the makings for a great Maryland crab experience – waterfront deck, picnic tables covered with brown paper, and amble crab sizes available.  You have to drink your beer from a can and extra old bay is on all the tables.  This is a local favorite that has turned into one of the top tourist stops in the area.

Another favorite of ours is The Seaside Restaurant Crab House and Lounge. With locations in Glen Burnie and Pasadena, you have more than one option for great crabs and other seafood. If you get a chance to go you have to try the Jumbo Lump Crab Cake and the famous Crab Soup. Having recently moved to the area I had no idea what to expect, but after trying my first crab cake from here I was quickly hooked! Make sure you call ahead for reservations.

If you find yourself in the city looking for steamed crabs and a good view, head on down to Bo Brooks in Canton. They offer a packed menu full of crabs as well as plenty of options for those who are less interested in seafood. The best thing about this place is that their bar is just as great as their menu. They offer year round drink specials and open the Tiki Hut during the warmer months.

Best Crushes

Don’t be fooled by Charm City’s crushes. You know the fruit-juice-and-vodka-drink that’s a Baltimore specialty. Orange, grapefruit, and watermelon flavors but if those flavors get boring try the Blueberry Acai Mojito Crush from Ryleigh’s Oyster in Federal Hill.

If you are in the Canton area be sure to stop into Portside Tavern in the square and enjoy a freshly squeezed orange crush.  The ingredients are perfectly proportioned and the sweet taste is very refreshing on a hot summer day.  Watch out though you will likely find yourself ordering another!

By far the best Baltimore crush you will find is at Mamma’s On the Half Shell in the Canton Square. Its ingredients: Stoli orange vodka, triple sec, sprite, crushed ice and fresh-squeezed orange juice. The KEY ingredients: Crushed ice and fresh-squeezed orange juice!   Alexander’s Tavern and Tiki Barge are other popular spots to sip on a delicious crush. Watch out though you will likely find yourself ordering another or in the harbor!

Sno-Balls

Many people who live in Baltimore associate the summer with heat and humidity, but beyond the temperature change, there is also a sudden change in the urban landscape. It seems that small stands selling flavored ice appear on every street corner, marking the beginning of Sno-Ball season.

A few years back, I set out on a tour of some of the local Sno-Ball stands in the area – a delicious scientific experiment that allowed me to sample Sno-Balls from some of the best. Some stands crushed the ice while others used shaved ice. Some featured the basic traditional flavors, while others featured diet and “premium” flavors. Some stands even allow you to put ice cream, marshmallow and other toppings on your Sno-Ball.

This website, SnoBall Collective, lists some locations around Baltimore. They also describe the different types of vendors:  http://www.snobaltimore.com/

One thing’s for sure, when it’s hot outside and you just need something to cool your palette, stop by one of the many Sno-Ball stands around Baltimore. Here is a list of our favorites:

–          Sno-Asis on Padonia Road in Cockeysville: A variety of flavors and toppings in a really nice decked setting. Try the Coconut with marshmallow – it’s delicious!

–          Uncle Wiggly’s on York Rd. in Towson: This fabulous little sandwich shop doubles as a Sno-Ball stand during the summer. In addition to Sno-Balls, you can also get ice cream – a great place to get the best of both worlds!

–          Original Hawaiian Island Sno-balls on Liberty Rd.: Not only do they have Sno-Balls, but they have shakes and banana splits from heaven! The egg custard with marshmallow was incredible!

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