The Original Crab House: Sketchy GPS Treats Us to Malnourished Blue Crab

Categories: Buyer Beware
The Original Crab House_John Zur.jpg
John Zur
Everglades blue claw crabs
Not to be confused with The Crab House in North Miami Beach, The Original Crab House, is located in Kendall at the end of an unassuming strip mall off US 1 and SW 98th Street. The place lacks any view of water. This should have been a warning sign. But with crab on our minds and a desire to test uncharted waters, we entered and found a dining room consisting of seven tables covered in newspapers. Walls were adorned in harpoons, a taxidermy swordfish, and plaques that looked as if they had been yanked off the walls of a New England inn.

The husband (co-owner, host, waiter, busser) greeted us with menus while we had a straight-shot view of the wife cooking in the kitchen. Appetizers ranged from $4.95 (raw oysters) to $14.95 (jumbo cocktail shrimp) and also included clam chowder ($3.95 for a cup, $4.95 for a bowl).

Crab is all we came for. Almost all of the seafood prices were listed as "market price." So when we inquired about the Alaskan king crab legs ($59.95) and Alaskan snow crab legs ($29.95), the husband retrieved plastic wrapped crab legs from the freezer and brought them over. They weren't the meatiest-looking crab legs, so the price seemed high.

We settled upon the regular bowl ($29.95) of original garlic blue crabs in herbs, spices, and garlic sauce; ($39.95 for the jumbo bowl). As we waited, we could hear nothing but the sweet sounds of Simon & Garfunkel overhead and the snapping of crab shells as our fellow crab-eaters dug into their bowls.

The owner prepped us by putting on our plastic bibs. He seemed to relish the role. He also seemed to notice that we weren't quite enjoying the nearly meatless blue claws. I asked where he obtained them and he replied "the Everglades," adding, "we didn't know we could get them there, but when they ran out on the east coast of Florida, we found them there..." He knew they were runt crabs and explained that because it's winter, they're smaller, When it gets warmer, the crabs they find will be larger, he said.

Your best bet is to not leave finding a crab house to the lottery of GPS as we did. Maybe instead you should wait for summer and head for the Glades. 

The Original Crab House
9636 SW 77th Avenue, Miami

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I love this place!! I've been going to this place for years because I prefer live blue crabs over frozen blue crabs. That is why I stopped going to Captain Crabs. You spent a lot of time describing the place but how did the food taste? You never mentioned how the food tasted and were only concerned about the size of the crab. By the way, crabs are seasonal. I guess I should not go to Red Lobster, Legal Seafood, etc.. anymore because there is no water view there either.

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