Mark and I are seafood lovers! I'm a sucker for shrimps and crabs while Mark loves mostly fish (he loves shrimps and crabs too but he's just too lazy have them shelled). I remember how we would always be on a seafood feast every weekend when I was still back home. Since I moved in to Dubai, my dad's crab and prawn specialty were just some of the foods that I missed. Mark, on the other hand, has been craving for seafood for the longest time now. A seafood feast is what usually welcomes him home but he hasn't come home to the Philippines for almost 3 years now.
So imagine my delight when I got an invite via email from Mr. Crab! We actually just had some seafood fix the night before, but we didn't mind having another much needed seafood feast at Mr. Crab.
Located in Al Barsha 1, just beside Mall of the Emirates, Mr. Crab offers crabs, of course, and other seafood like fish, prawns, squid, lobster, and mussels.
The place is like a cafeteria with a warm vibe with its orange-colored chairs and wooden slatted benches and tables, walls and ceilings adorned with wooden crates, and flower pots and dreamy pendant lights as accents.
It actually resembles a similar seafood chain in the Philippines that also has a number of branches here in Dubai, but Mr. Crab is the more chic version. I'm just not sure if it was just because of my heightened sense of smell when I'm 'PMS-ing', but the place kind of smelled fishy when we arrived.
The menu is straight forward. You just need to follow 4 steps when ordering: choose your catch (crab, shrimp, lobster, squid, mussels, hamour, or tilapia) and how you want it cooked (boiled, grilled, or fried); choose your sauce (there are 14 choices); choose how the hotness level (mild, medium, or wild hot); and choose your sides (unlimited white rice or french fries).
I found it hard to choose what to have, mainly because everything on the menu was inviting. Good thing the staff who attended to us was well-versed with the menu and gave us some recommendations. We were served with complimentary prawn crackers along with our ordered drinks. Mark had Peach Frost while I opted for Cranberry Fantasy. Both were soda-based drinks with fresh fruit juice and fruit bits, both were equally refreshing.
Mark and I were just supposed to have one crab dish and one shrimp dish, but the staff suggested for us to try their best-sellers. And so there, what's supposed to be just a seafood dinner turned into a seafood feast!
Our seafood feast consisted of Crab Meat Nachos, Grilled Hamour and Grilled shrimps, Boiled Blue Crabs Fried Calamari, unlimited rice, thick-cut fries, and a choice of yummy sauces alongside. We chose Butter Garlic, Black Pepper, BBQ, and Sweet Chili for the sauces.
The Crab Meat Nachos was a revelation. I've had numerous nacho dishes before but not one with crab meat. It had that distinct Mexican nachos taste and that distinct crab taste. And I must say, they were a perfect pair.
Mozzarella cheese, chunky crab meat, olives, jalapenos, tomatoes, and onions lay on a bed of crunchy nachos and drizzled with mayo-ketchup sauce...aaaahh! Now I know why it's a Mr. Crab specialty. I'd love to have mine without the jalapenos, though. :p
The Fried Calamari and Grilled Shrimps were my favorites. Served in a plastic-lined tin bucket, the generous Fried Calamari pieces had a crispy crust yet tender core, seasoned just right and was perfect with either the sweet chili or bbq sauces. Mark thought that there's nothing special with the calamari, but I totally loved it! :D
The Grilled Shrimps came in five huge pieces and were grilled to perfection. It was cooked just right maintaining that supple and juicy meat. I loved pairing it with the butter garlic and black pepper sauces.
The Boiled Blue Crabs and Grilled Hamour also didn't disappoint. Dining at Mr. Crab wouldn't be complete without trying their crabs, of course. Mark initially ordered the Mud Crab, which unfortunately were out of stock that time, and I would have wanted to try the King Crab Legs, which I then dismissed when the staff mentioned that the dish only has four legs, so we just settled with the Blue Crabs.
Also served in a plastic-lined tin bucket were four halves of meaty Boiled Blue Crabs. All that crushing and scooping just to get the mildly sweet crab meat brought back a lot of memories from our seafood feasts back home.
If you have been religiously reading my blog, you'll know how out of all the seafood, fish is the least that I like. We already had Grilled Shrimps staff suggested that we get their Grilled Fish as this is a Mr. Crab specialty too, so we obliged. The offer fish of the day at market price, and for that night Grilled Hamour is what's served to us. It was actually a good choice.
The hamour was huge! It was a bit on the salty side, though, but I loved how it didn't have that fishy after taste. Mark enjoyed this one.
We had all our sauces in mild hotness. Out of the four sauces that we had, the Butter Garlic was the perfect pair for all the seafood dishes that we had. For the grilled and fried dishes, I'd recommend the Sweet Chili Sauce. The BBQ sauce would also be good if it weren't a little too rich and overpowering. The Black Pepper sauce was still a little too spicy for me. Mark sure loved mixing the Butter Garlic and Black Pepper sauces with the rice, then dipping the seafood in either the BBQ or Sweet Chili sauce, and yes, I tried it and it did work!
Although we're already full, the staff insisted that we try their desserts, so we concluded our seafood feast with Gimme S'mores and Brownie Madness for dessert, with the latter being mine and Mark's favorite.
The melted chocolate which, if my palates served me right, tasted like Hershey's dark chocolate and mallows were a little to sweet for me. I'm also just not sure if it was just because I spent too much time taking photos, but the mallows and chocolate weren't that gooey.
The Brownie Madness, which was Mark's order and another Mr. Crab specialty, was delicious. Stacked in a cutesy jar are chocolate brownies, vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, and brownie crumbles. Saying that it's divine is a total underrating! :p
Although there were minor misses, our Mr. Crab experience definitely satisfied our seafood cravings. The servings were massive, each dish is already good for sharing. I also love how they have a variety of ways to cook the seafood making it a totally different experience each time you dine.
Aside from seafood dishes, they also offer promising dishes like paella, more sides, appetizers, salads, and soup. Mark already promised that we'll get back for their boiled and grilled seafood since we've already started on our diet. Oh I just can't wait! :D
Deyaar Building, Street 2A
Sheikh Zayed Road, Barsha 1,
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
+971 (0)4 5509282
Nearest Metro Station: Mall of the Emirates (Red Line)
We were guests at Mr. Crab and our meal was complimentary, but as always, this post is sincerely written and all views and opinions are my own.