Location: 1333 New Hampshire St NW (Dupont Circle)
Let me start off by apologizing for the dearth of posts over the past 4 weeks. As it turns out, working on inpatient services is incredibly tiring - think 12 hour shifts of nonstop work. Couple that with early morning hours (waking up at 4:30) for a decidedly anti-morning person, and it means I end up passing out after dinner or spending my remaining free time going to restaurants, not writing about them. Fortunately, I'm rotating through clinics now, and office hours/no weekends are a welcome break from the go go pace of hospitalist work. To celebrate surviving the first few weeks of residency, I got a bunch of my coworkers together for Sunday dinner at The Front Page, a classy bar right along the southern edge of Dupont Circle.
The Front Page would be an otherwise nondescript entry in the sea of "bar & grills" that dot the DC landscape, catering to tourists or lovers of the mainstream, if it weren't for the fact that all of their crab cake offerings are half price on Sundays from 5-10 pm. You heard me right - $6 for an appetizer portion, $8 for a sandwich, and $12 for a full entree. It's a deal that can't be beat...except on this particular Sunday (call ahead and ask for it), when The Front Page also offers buckets of 12 Maryland Blue Crabs (with unlimited cole slaw & corn on the cob) for $20. It adds up to an amazing deal for crab lovers...but is it as nice on the taste buds as it is on the wallet?
I started off with the crab cake sandwich, which consists of a blackened jumbo lump meat crab cake, LTO, and cajun remoulade served on a brioche bun with a side of sweet potato fries. It may not look like much, but man oh man was it delicious. The lumps of crab meat were incredibly juicy, and the chefs did an exquisite job seasoning the crab cake to perfection. Each bite pops with that rich, briny yet not overly fishy taste of fresh crab. And the cajun remoulade? A great complement to the overall taste, giving the sandwich a buttery feel and returning a bit of moisture lost from the blackening process. Lastly, I have nothing to say about the bun, which as you all know is the best possible compliment I can give to a sandwich bun. And the sweet potato fries? They're nice and crispy, and about par for the course if you're into sweet potato fries.
Moving on to the main event, these buckets of fresh-caught Maryland Blue Crabs are pretty simple - steamed, then doused with Old Bay. Whatever sticks, that's the right amount of Old Bay. They're served with unlimited coleslaw and corn on the cob, which make for a nice break in the action, as well as providing much need caloric support for all the hammering, cracking, and digging you'll have to do to get into these buggers.
After going through all that work to get an itty bit of crab meat, I've developed a newfound respect for crab cake. That aside, it was an incredible experience seeing 10 of my coworker friends (myself included) bibs up, hammering away, getting splashed from both sides, and otherwise being as uncivilized at a dinner as I've ever seen. The crab meat was juicy and very well-seasoned. Be careful not to lick the shell, though, lest you get a tongue full of Old Bay; I needed about a glass of water per crab. Overall, make sure you get something in addition to the bucket, because you burn about as many calories getting to your food as you actually take in. Great for those on a diet?
Randomly, some old couple bought our entire group bottles of champagne for dessert after finding out that we were residents at Children's. Win! Big shout-out to whoever you are, if you happen to stumble across this blog. For offering a great deal and a great bonding experience, The Front Page earns 4 Cherries.