Ask a Maryland local to describe a perfect day, and they may paint this picture for you.
The sweet aroma of Old Bay and seafood are heavy in the salty coastal air – as you take a seat at a picnic table, covered with newspaper. You don’t even need to see the menu. The crab and shrimp boil it is, with a few oysters on the half shell — Blue Points if they have ‘em — while you wait.
Soon, a gleaming silver bucket appears, piled high with perfectly steamed Maryland crab, and there’s just enough room left on the table for your ice-cold Natty Boh.
Get ready to put that Ft. Meade TDY per diem to good use at 10 of the tastiest seafood spots in the area!
Crabcake Factory (CCF), Ocean City
Starting off as a little seafood shack, ‘The Factory’ turned into a huge success and four locations. Go for their amazing, over-the-top brunches and Bloody Marys. They also ship, so you can send a delicious taste of your Maryland TDY back home.
Located in historic downtown Annapolis, Buddy’s offers delicious food and 21 picturesque windows overlooking the harbor. With its space, views, and variety of seafood options (buffets, buckets, and more) – Buddy’s is also a great spot for a group, or class, dinner.
G&M’s, Linthicum Heights
Less than 20 minutes from Ft. Meade – G&M’s offers one of the best crab cake sandwiches in the region, in addition to a number of seafood dinners, including scallops, shrimp, and tuna. Make sure to save room for their homemade desserts; they offer 14 kinds of cheesecake, 10 different types of cakes, and 28 flavors and styles of hand-crafted pastries.
Yep, that’s ‘delly’ not deli – and Chick & Ruth’s prides themselves on “Fine dining without breaking the bank.” This delightful dive has been featured on Travel Channel’s “Man vs. Food”, and Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.” Choose from palm-sized crab cakes, 2-pound burgers, or ‘Triple-sized’ sandwiches with your choice of delly meat. If you’re feeling brave, go for the 6-pound milkshake challenge.
Koco’s Pub, Baltimore
Koco’s calls itself “Baltimore’s Favorite Neighborhood Pub” – and their 4.8 and 4.7-starred reviews on Facebook and Google, back up the claim. Koco’s is just plain good, and it’s easy to see why both the ‘Baltimore Sun’ and ‘Baltimore Magazine’ rave about the place.
Chart House, Annapolis
Starting life as a former boat house, the Chart House offers dazzling waterfront views, and equally spectacular cocktails and cuisine. Their sunset views are particularly lovely.
Thames Street Oyster House, Fells Point/Baltimore
The Thames Street Oyster House has been racking up awards for some of the best seafood in the area for several years running. With an excellent raw bar selection, the restaurant also serves up some delightful New England specialties, including lobster rolls and Quahog clam chowder.
Pappas Seafood Co., Parkville/Baltimore
Featuring three area restaurants and catering, Pappas Seafood shines with their 45-year-old secret family recipe. So much so, that Oprah named their crab cakes as one of her favorite things, in her Christmas 2015 issue of ‘O’. “You get a crab cake – and you get a crab cake!”
Mama’s on the Half Shell, Canton/Baltimore
With its rustic, dark hardwood floors and copper-tiled ceiling, Mama’s serves up hearty seafood in a fun and cozy, tavern atmosphere. They also offer adult “slushies” and a great brunch and happy hour.
The Old Ebbitt Grill, Washington D.C.
No Ft. Meade TDY is complete without a trek into our nation’s capital, and one of the tastiest places to soak up some history (and amazing seafood) is Old Ebbitt’s. Just steps from many of the Smithsonian Museums downtown, Ebbitt’s first opened its doors in 1856. As the oldest saloon in D.C., it was a known favorite of Presidents Grant, Cleveland, Harding, and Theodore Roosevelt. Their seafood is spectacular whenever you go – but here’s an insider secret. Seven days a week, from 3-6pm, is Old Ebbitt’s Happy Hour! From lobster to Jonah crab claws, clams, oysters, and shrimp – you can dine on some of the freshest seafood D.C. has to offer, in one of the city’s best locations – at 50 percent off!
Whether you’re looking for low-key or classy, historic or modern – you’ll be treated to some of the finest seafood in the area. As these are truly some of the best restaurants, reservations – particularly dinner and brunch are smart. Enjoy your time staying at our Ft. Meade crash pad and get out and explore the local area.
Written by: Kristi Adams