This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #HungryForCrab #CollectiveBias
Since the time I was a little girl sitting on the banks fishing with my grandpa, seafood has been a staple in my diet. In those early years, I was a connoisseur of trout and striped bass, mostly because that’s what we ended up catching. These days you’ll find me in my own kitchen preparing fish like tilapia, but for certain tempting seafood entrees like lobster and crab, well, I leave those to the professionals and prefer to enjoy them while eating out. One of those favorite restaurants for my family is Red Lobster, and I’m happy to report that Red Lobster’s Crabfest is back!
What is Red Lobster’s Crabfest? It’s a not-to-be-missed time when guests can dine and select from the largest variety of crab dishes ever offered at the seafood restaurant. It was the perfect time for us to celebrate a family birthday, so we headed to the Lewisville, Texas location here in the Dallas/Ft Worth area to enjoy a night out.
While my husband loves the unique flavor of lobster, I prefer the sweet taste of crab. Though I thought I knew a lot about crab, I learned a few new facts this week. Did you know that there are four types of wild-caught crab caught in the icy waters of Alaska? You see, the crab you’ll select at Red Lobster comes right from Alaska. One day I will visit, but until then, this is as close as I’ll get!
I only knew about 2 types of crab (King and Blue), but there are four completely different ones:
- Alaska Bairdi (pronounced bear-dye) Crab: Alaska Bairdi Crab is larger in size than traditional snow crab and has a more delicate, sweeter and tender texture.
- North American Snow Crab: Snow Crab is known for its trademark large clusters, snowy-white meat and sweet, delicate flavor.
- King Crab: This is the largest of Alaska’s three crab species, prized for its leg meat, rich flavor and tender texture.
- Blue Crab: Blue Crab, most commonly used for crab cakes, features a sweet flavor and softer texture.
So with crab on my mind, we headed over to Red Lobster for our birthday celebration. There’s only way to start such a visit off right – with the famous Red Lobster Cheddar Biscuits. Okay, and a salad, but let’s be honest – it’s the cheddar biscuits that are the star here. There’s nothing quite like fresh cheddar biscuits still warm from the oven.
If you are new to the restaurant, let me tell you that the cheddar biscuits arrive free to your table. Oh, and they’ll bring new ones out straight from the oven if you like. TIP: Don’t leave those cheddar biscuits on the table. If there are still any left at the end of your meal (but I ask why?), be sure to ask for a bag to take them home. Fifteen seconds in the microwave and you’ll be transported right back.
There are many new items on the menu during Crabfest and these two caught my interest right away:
- Crab Fritters—Panko-crusted crab fritters with a side of Meyer lemon aioli.
- Grilled Parmesan Corn with cilantro-lime butter.
I have to tell you that while I could have done without the fries that came with it, the Panko-crusted crab fritters were incredible! Though good alone, be sure to pair with the Meyer lemon aioli to go from good to incredible. I don’t know about you, but an amazing sauce kicks the flavor up two or three notches. Red Lobster has hit it out of the ballpark with the Meyer lemon aioli and I wish they’d share the recipe (HINT!).
CONFESSION: I’ll be honest here, I don’t really know how to crack Crab-Legs. In the past, I’ve always had my husband do the cracking for me, but thanks to Chef Heidi, I’m going to learn how with this How to Crack Crab-Legs Video! I don’t want to be intimidated any more! Do you know how?
So while I’m determined to try cracking the Crab-Legs on my next visit, this visit I didn’t want to work for my food. Take a look at all the incredible crab offerings during Red Lobster’s Crabfest.
- Alaska Bairdi Crab Legs Dinner – A generous portion of premium, wild-caught Alaska Bairdi crab legs, served with a full ear of Chesapeake-grilled corn on the cob. Alaska Bairdi Crab is larger in size than traditional snow crab and has a more delicate, sweeter and tender texture.
- Crab Lover’s Dream™ – Wild-caught North American snow crab legs and king crab legs, paired with Red Lobster’s signature crab linguini Alfredo. Two different types of crab on one plate.
It was this next crab entree that I chose and I’m sure you can tell why.
- Crab Cakes & Crab-Oscar Salmon – Premium lump crab cakes and wood-grilled fresh Atlantic salmon with crab-hollandaise topping.
Crab cakes are a must and something that I always love to enjoy, but pair them with fresh salmon and I’m in heaven. This plate was overflowing with crab and there were leftovers to take home! I’ve never tasted a hollandaise sauce like this one – so unique and full of extra crab. If you are a crab lover, this dish is for you. Once again, you’ll enjoy the Meyer lemon aioli that comes with the crab cakes and sides included mashed potatoes and grilled vegetables like yellow squash and zucchini. Now you understand why I had leftovers, right?
The salmon in this dish is wild-caught salmon from Alaska as well and only available during Crabfest because of the season. I learned a bit about salmon here too. Though one of my favorite fish, I had no idea about the differences.
- Sockeye Salmon – Deep, red flesh that has distinctive rich flavor and firm texture and is available from May-Sept.
- Coho Salmon: Second-largest Alaska salmon species. It has orange-red flesh, delicate flavor and a firm texture and is available from June-Oct.
I love that I don’t have to pick just one flavor I love here at Red Lobster. With the Crab Cakes and Crab-Oscar Salmon entree, I was able to savor all my favorite flavors at once!
It was a birthday celebration after all, so were glad to spy a limited time only dessert on the Red Lobster Crabfest menu! The Berry-Shore Cake!
With strawberries and blueberries paired with vanilla ice cream, shortcake and whipped cream, you can’t go wrong! They even added the special touch of a birthday candle to make it extra festive!
Are you a Deadliest Catch™ fan? If so (and you are 21+ years of age) you’ll want to try the new Rogue Wave! Though I’m not a drinker, it looked beautiful and features Sauza Gold tequila, blue curacao and house margarita mix topped with a splash of ginger ale. Most fun of all, it’s served on the rocks in a commemorative Red Lobster mason jar with the Deadliest Catch™ logo. TIP: I did find out you can just purchase the commemorative mason jar for $1.99 without the alcohol!
TIP: Visit the Crabfest website to learn more about how you can win dinner with Captain Sig of the Deadliest Catch, and a tour of the Northwestern!
Birthday celebration was a huge success! We will be back to enjoy Red Lobster’s Crabfest again and I’m wondering which dish I’ll try next!
Tell me, which new Crabfest dish would you order?