The Preakness Stakes gallops in on Saturday. Celebrate the run for the Black-Eyed-Susans with a taste of Maryland in general and Baltimore in particular.
You can dream about crisp-outside-tender-inside pit beef, Berger's cookies laden with chocolate fudge, or Lady Baltimore cake. But the real flavor of the state, the city, and the race is crabs. Here are some spots on Long Island to enjoy them.
Barney's in Locust Valley has been a destination for its generous crab cake for more than 30 years. The meaty production these days is an appetizer served with field greens and finished with a lemon-caper emulsion. The primary competition comes from the tuna tartare-and-smoked salmon napoleon. Main dishes: ahi tuna with ginger-mango vinaigrette, Nova Scotia halibut with corn broth, and the stand-out seared breast and leg confit of Long Island duck. Expensive.
Barney's, 315 Buckram Rd., Locust Valley, 516-671-6300, barneyslv.com
Harbor Crab Co. in Patchogue is devoted to the crustaceans. Have yours in a crab cake with Dijon mustard-horseradish sauce, in a crab-enriched cobb salad, in a crab-cake sandwich, the Baltimore burger capped with a crab cake, a combo with steamed Dungeness and snow crab, the king crab pot, crab-and-lobster frittters, crab salad-stuffed avocado, crab-and-spinach dip, and fried soft-shell crabs. Moderate to expensive.
Harbor Crab Co., 116 Division St., Patchogue, 631-687-2722, harborcrab.com
Jordan Lobster Farms in Island Park, a local landmark for seafood, has been in business since 1938. It's a casual, flavorful combination of market, bar, and restaurant. Lobster reigns, but you can savor plenty of crab, too. Snow crab, king crab, blue crab, nibble on the Maryland crab cake, either in a sandwich or two on a platter; pick soft-shell crabs both ways, too. You feel like summer is about to overtake spring. Moderate to expensive.
Jordan Lobster Farms, 1 Pettit Pl., Island Park, 516-889-3314, jordanlobsterfarms.com