The Narrows is fancier than most Roadfood restaurants – rack of lamb or chicken Oscar, anyone? – and it is pricier – dinner easily can set you back $50+. But we would be remiss not to include it here as a service to all in search of great crab cakes and fried oysters. Both are righteous regional dishes to remember.
These are the crabbiest possible crab cakes, meaning they taste like all crab and nothing but the crab, just minimally spiced and containing only enough filler to help the big, heavy white lumps of meat remain spherical. At the first touch of a fork, the sphere will fall apart, offering up bite-size forkfuls of glistening-moist inside meat as well as pieces from the outside that have facets that are light brown with a crisp edge. The oysters, known to Chesapeake Bay connoisseurs as white gold, are fried in a cornmeal veil, just enough to shore in all the juices that erupt as soon as teeth pierce the meat within.
Although the place is quite deluxe, it is in no way snooty or off-putting. Located on the water of the Kent Narrows, it offers diners an opportunity to look out at pleasure boats as well as working fishermen coming in with clams, crabs and oysters. For those far away who desperately crave a real crab cake, the Narrows offers “Crab Cake Express” service: crab cakes ready to cook and crab soup packed in dry ice and shipped overnight.