Bethesda Crab House
4958 Bethesda Ave. (near Clarendon Road)
Bethesda, MD 20814
Metro: Red Line to Bethesda
You come here to eat crab. Yeah, they also have shrimp, corn on the cob, and cole slaw. But really, if you didn't want to eat crab you probably should have gone somewhere else. Mediums are $45 a dozen, large crabs are $60 a dozen, and extra large crabs are something more than that. When we went, all they had were the mediums. They also have a $30 all you can eat offer which comes with cole slaw and corn. There's seating outdoors in good weather.
We weren't wildly hungry, having just come from our previous food stop, Ben's Chili Bowl, so we split a half-dozen crabs for $22.50. They arrived at the table hot and covered with old bay spice. We probably should have asked for them to hold the spice; the crabs were sweet and very fresh, and the spice was sprinkled with a heavy hand, as is traditional.
Eating crab makes quite a mess, which is why the tables are all covered with newspapers. You use your hands, the mallet, and the knife provided. This is the purist's approach. If you prefer, there are crab cakes. But we preferred dismembering the crabs ourselves.
Soda was $2, and corn on the cob was $2.50. After tax and tip we walked out for $17 each.
There really isn't that much more to say except that we'll cheerfully go back. Oh, and that parking is challenging. Take the Metro. It's not that long a walk.