Bright painted room? Check. Flashing lights? Check. Cocktail slushy? Check. Fried sides? Check. Apron bibs on? Check, check and check!
We were ready to get our hands dirty with some serious crab feasting! But firstly let’s go back to the beginning. After making a reservation (a few days ahead is needed for a Friday night) at the popular House of Crabs, we were finally here to try out the bagged marinated crabs. To line our stomachs up for the crabs, we ordered a few snacks (if you could call a friend chicken burger a snack that is…).
The snacks soon start piling in, and share the buffalo cucumber, redfern prawn roll, bbq octopus taco, crab blackbean & chorizo balls, lobster fries, fried school prawns, kale salad and a fried chicken burger. Definitely over ordered in the snacks department for ourselves (5 of us) but it was good to be able to try all the items that interested us. All the snacks were tasty and flavoursome (even the kale salad), but the highlights for me were the lobster fries and fried chicken burger. The lobster fries involved a generous plate of crispy fries drenched with a thick lobster flavoured gravy that was studded with bacon & corn pieces. Whilst it seemed strange for us to order the fried chicken burger at the house of CRABS, it was definitely meant to be. The fried chicken was juicy and succulent on the inside and perfectly crunchy on the outside. It was seasoned well and was all served in between a heavenly soft and fluffy bun with an additional side of crunchy fries.
After all our “sides” and “starters”, we were up to our “boil” selection. House of Crabs offers a range of seafood that is boiled and served with a sauce inside a plastic bag. The serving sizes are all 500grams, and the sauce selection ranges between: cajun, mexican, oriental and lemon pepper. We were already pretty satisfied by the time we finished our sides/starters, but we found room in our stomachs again when we saw our 4 bags of seafood goodies lined up. We had 2 x snow crab bags, 1 x little neck clams and 1 x blue swimmer crab. I’m a fairly lazy eater so I preferred the snow crab legs compared to the other bags since the snow crab legs gave more meat to effort ratio, whilst also have more meat to soak up all the sauce in the bags. While 500 grams may sound like a lot, after all the shells are removed for the blue swimmer crab and little neck clams, there was not too much meat. My favourite sauce was the lemon pepper which I found not too overly powering (so the natural sweetness of the crab meat could be enhanced), whilst M and our other friends all preferred the oriental sauce.
By the time we took of our bibs and the mountain of mess was rolled off from our table, the restaurant was closing down for the night so we missed out on dessert. However it was probably a good thing that we did, seeing the struggle it took for us to roll ourselves out of the restaurant. All in all, House of Crabs was a fun night out for us – it was messy, tasty and had a good range of dishes on top of crabs. The service was also prompt and friendly, and throughout the night the staff were always readily nearby to assist us.I wouldn’t be returning in a hurry though seeing how pricey it was (costed us around $80 per head though admittedly we did almost eat our body’s weight worth of food in one sitting) which I felt could have bought us better quality seafood (or a degustation) elsewhere. However if I did return, I would get the snow crab legs and try out more of their “snacks” menu.
House of Crabs
Level 1, 305 Cleveland St