For those of you who aren’t regular patrons of Brookland’s Finest, you may not be aware of their Tuesday specials. Earlier this year they partnered with DC’s own Cotton & Reed Distillers to offer a Distiller Dinner with a pre fixe menu. Now, for the remainder of summer Tuesdays, they’re having a Brookland Crab Boil, which, for $30, gives you 4 large blue crabs, two ears of corn, and an ample helping of summer potatoes, all steamed in an Old Bay broth and topped with a healthy portion of grilled andouille. You’ll also have your choice of two Denizens beers. This week’s options were their red ale and their Bohemian Czech style pilsner.
We were hungry. Really hungry (per usual). So we decided we wanted more than just crab. Luckily Brookland’s Finest’s regular menu is in full force during the crab boils. We started out with their wedge salad which is topped with roasted beets, cheery tomatoes, pickled onions, and goat cheese, and finished off with sweet basic vinaigrette.
As a side note, Brookland’s Finest has some of the finest snacks and apps you can get. Their onion rings are as big as your head, and their brussels sprouts chips are a surprisingly satisfying treat. But we wanted to save plenty of room for the crabs, so we restrained ourselves after just the salad.
The crab boils came out quickly after our salad plate was removed, and the andouille was the surprising star of the show. Laid right on top of the crabs, it’s impossible not to be tempted to pick off all the andouille first (though it’s fine if you do). The recognizable Old Bay scent is the first sensory experience you get here. Brookland’s Finest is generous enough to give you a ladle or two of the broth in the bottom of the dish for dunking and slurping. The crabs are good sized, ranging from what would probably be considered medium to large at the seafood market, and they’re steamed to perfection. They come with a side of melted butter (for more dunking and slurpring) and a PBR bucket to discard your shells. And the all-too-often-overlooked corn and potatoes were filled with Old Bay and crab flavors and rounded out the meal to a tee.
We thought we were full, but then they brought the dessert menu, and we couldn’t pass up the beignets. They came five to an order, and, while a little more dense than those in the Crescent City, they’re just as tasty. The strawberry preserves were delicious and gave the beignets a proper French feel. I could probably put those preserves on just about anything, tbh.
Come and get your crab boil on without trekking up to the Chesapeake before Brookland’s Finest moves on to their next Tuesday night special. Reservations are recommended, but not required. And, don’t fret if the weather doesn’t cooperate – Brookland’s Finest serves their crab boil inside, too. Happy cracking!