STONEY’S SEAFOOD HOUSE
Address: 3939 Oyster House Road, Broomes Island, MD 20615
I don’t remember exactly how the topic of crab cakes came up, but it was in a conversation with my friend Randy during my last job. He spoke very highly about Stoney’s, a place that he had frequented many times over the years and said made the best crab cakes in the area. At the beginning of this month, I moved down here to the southern Maryland area (closer to the restaurant than when I was in Alexandria) and this past weekend, I met up with Randy at Stoney’s to catch up on how things were going and also to give these crab cakes a try.
There are three Stoney’s locations in southern Maryland: Solomons Island, Prince Frederick, and Broomes Island. We met up at the Broomes Island location (the original restaurant) which was situated right on the waterfront, tucked away in a small neighborhood. The restaurant has ample indoor seating as well as outdoor seating in the back. With the nice weather, we decided to sit outside, where the view looks out towards the Patuxent River and you could see all the boats cruising by. It was actually pretty neat that they had the pier in the back of the restaurant, where we saw some people dock their boats, step off, and come in for a bite to eat!
We started things off with the crab dip appetizer: a blend of cheese, mayo, spices, and crabmeat. The dip had some really great flavor and didn’t overdo it on the salt (which I’ve found at some other places). The dip also paired very well on the French bread that they served with it. I was happy to see that the crabmeat was plentiful in the dip as well.
Then, it was time for the main attraction: the crab cake. It was probably about the size of a baseball (this one was the smaller version of their regular size, and I could imagine that would be the size of a softball). The crab cake itself came on the bun with lettuce and tomato, with my choice of side (potato salad). After spooning a little bit of tartar sauce over the crab cake, I put the bun on top, pressed down a little, and took the first bite. One thing was for sure: the majority of the crab cake consisted of actual crabmeat, not a ton of filler that seems to be all too common with some seafood restaurants. The nice golden brown color on the outside comes from being baked and not deep-fried, so there isn’t a huge crunch when you first dig in. It was a little difficult to pinpoint exactly what else went into the crab cake, but I was thinking mayo, breadcrumbs, and maybe a touch of mustard. For my personal tastes, I could have used just a pinch more of salt in the mix. A big reason that I enjoyed this crab cake, however, was because it was able to balance that point of being not too dry and not too moist. Great consistency, texture, and flavor made for a very satisfying crab cake that I thought lived up to Randy’s praise.
My first taste of Maryland crab cakes did not disappoint. Everything tasted very fresh and I’m excited to return to Stoney’s to sample more from the menu.
Here are my rankings for Stoney’s Seafood House:
Food: 4.5 / 5
The food had really great flavor and tasted very fresh, giving me a very good impression of the food quality. There’s variety on the menu for a number of other seafood options besides crab, and I’m curious to see how those stack up.
Atmosphere: 4.75 / 5
A seafood restaurant that is situated right on the waterfront? That’s a winning combo. The outdoor seating right next to the pier was fantastic for nice summer days like when we visited. The indoor seating area also featured large windows that still offered great views of the water.
Service: 4 / 5
Our waiter would swing by our table once in a while, but there were other times that we didn’t see him for good stretches of time. It wasn’t an issue for us since we weren’t in any particular hurry, but I could see it potentially being a problem if the restaurant got more crowded or if someone was trying to dine in quickly. He did visit after our food arrived to make sure everything came out okay and that we were good on drinks.
Price: 3.75 / 5
I do think that the food was slightly overpriced by a few dollars. The crab cake sandwich (the one I ordered was their smaller version) fetched for $17 market price, but I think it would have been better priced at $15. Same thing for the crab dip as well: priced at $14, better at $11 or $12. The pricing is not drastic enough that I wouldn’t go back, since I did thoroughly enjoy how the food tasted.
Overall: 17 / 20 (85%)