Taste Test: Crab Cakes

From the Northeast to the Southern coastline, crab cakes have always been open to interpretation. Here in Indy, we love them all.
Photography by Tony Valainis

Ocean Prime
Taking a more-is-more approach, Ocean Prime incorporates several kinds of crab into its 6-ounce cakes, relying on finely shredded meat to help hold the whole thing together. Horseradish mustard aioli and a Carolina-style slaw lend crisp acidity and textural contrast to the appetizer serving; the two-cake dinner entree is plated with veggies and a sweet corn emulsion. 8555 N. River Rd., 317-569-0975


Blupoint Coastal Kitchen & Cocktails
No fillers here. These cakes showcase the crab, the whole lump crab, and nothing but the crab, with simple ingredients that let the buttery flavor of the meat truly shine through. A ramekin of kicky chipotle mayo and spring mix greens are the icing on these cakes served two to an order. 5858 N. College Ave., 317-559-3259


Slapfish
This kitschy nautical-themed franchise’s interpretation brings lobster along for the ride in its beach shack–appropriate Clobster Cakes, available on a sandwich or paired with fresh greens. 15009 Gray Rd., Noblesville, 317-218–3508; 11547 Yard St., Fishers, 317-623–3900; 345 Massachusetts Ave., 317-686-9713


Up Cellar
Made with 8 ounces of sweet jumbo lump meat and garnished with citrus salad, shaved fennel, and remoulade, this meaty masterpiece is the signature app of the swanky Bargersville steakhouse. “Our crab cake pairs beautifully with a sauvignon blanc or a glass of Champagne,” adds CEO Nathan Huelsebusch. 63 N. Baldwin St., Bargersville, 317-533-0845


Bardales Fresh Seafood Market
In addition to supplying product to local restaurants, this new kid on the (Broad Ripple) block has a storefront that allows home chefs looking to impress to walk in and buy their crab cakes made with fresh-off- the-boat ingredients. 882 E. Coil St., 317-519-7348