Saturday, July 11, 2009

Cantler's Riverside Inn

Last date I was here: 07/11/2009

Restaurant: Cantler’s Riverside Inn (

Location: Annapolis, MD

Total Rating: 4.2
Food: 4, Price: 5, Service: 4, Ambience: 5, Accessibility: 2

Summary: Nothing says summer like an afternoon picking Maryland blue crabs on Cantler's patio overlooking Mill Creek. If you own a boat, you can arrive by water, but the journey by car from downtown Annapolis is just a few minutes and a world away. The pace here is dictated by how long it takes to steam the crabs in giant kettles and how long it takes one to pick through the shells for the succulent meat. You can't be in a hurry for either. Cantler's is open year-round and offers a full seafood menu for those who don't want to get down and dirty crab-picking (there is a big wash basin out back). The owner and founder, Jimmy Cantler, is a native Marylander and worked as a waterman on the Chesapeake Bay. The Cantler family has worked in the seafood industry for five generations. In 1974 Jimmy Cantler started a restaurant dedicated to serving fresh seafood in a casual family atmosphere. Today all seafood is inspected by experienced handlers to insure only the highest quality product reaches their customers.

We went to this place after reading about it in the Washington Post. The road was winding and tricky as we drove up and then we had to wait for about 30 minutes as there was a line of cars waiting to even get in the parking lot. Be prepared for another long wait, especially if you want outdoor seating. This is what gives a lower accessibility score, however it was such a nice day we didn’t mind waiting for our table. Also, you can walk down to the pier and watch as they load, measure, and pack up the fresh crabs on site. After an hour wait we were seated and served right away. The portion was decent for the price and everything was fresh and tasty. Although super crowded, it is worth the wait for fresh seafood and Maryland crabs at Cantler’s. I would definitely come back again.

What I ate:

Clam Strips
Tender clam strips fried golden brown

Crab Cakes
Two Deep Fried - In Maryland Tradition
Served with Hush puppies and Cole slaw

Plus Keith ate:

Cantler’s Crab Boil
3 hard crabs, mussels, clams, 1/2 pound shrimp, corn on the cob & coleslaw

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