I'm a Chesapeake Bay kid so Maryland blue crab holds a special place in my heart. Not even 100 degree heat (and 1000 miles of air travel) could keep me away from the annual crab fest at my favorite restaurant in LA. The crabs themselves need no explanation, but the Hungry Cat outdid themselves this year by serving *soft shelled crab po' boys*. I've often said that such a dish would be my last death row meal, and the Hungry Cat rendition only helped reinforce that idea.
The rest of the meal was great, too. The heirloom tomato salad was a pleasant surprise, not only in its simplicity but awesome flavor. Its sweetness and acidity played so well against the aggresive seasoning of the crab.
I thought the crab this year was excellent. The crab last year were a little bigger, but I thought they absolutely nailed the preparation for the 2008 version. Whereas last year the saltiness became overwhelming, it feels they toned it down a tad, and with fantastic result.
The turnout was huge. The expansion obviously gave more seats inside, but there was a larger outdoor setup. (Fortunately, the shade of the adjoining apartment complex kept the direct sun away by early afternoon.) I still haven't been able to fully wash away all the Old Bay from my hands, and I'm already counting down the days for the next one.