Sunday, February 16, 2014

New Dippin' Crab Buckets at Joe's Crab Shack are pretty much awesome

Joe’s Crab Shack, with nearly 140 shacks around the country, and six here in the Orlando area, has revealed a whole new way to serve up its legendary crab, along with a new menu brimming with 100% Shore favorites.

Featured on the new menu is the Dippin’ Crab Bucket, a dish that offers guests a chance to savor Joe’s fresh crab 15 different ways. Guests first choose one of Joe’s fresh-from-the-shore crab varieties, including king, queen, snow, Dungeness and Antarctic. Each is cooked to order, just like at the shore. The next big choice is one of the new Dippin’ sauces, includinga rich Garlicky Butter sauce, a ginger, plum and sriracha Tiki sauce, and the buttery mushroom Back Bay sauce. Every Dippin’ Crab Bucket also includes fresh corn, potatoes and a piping hot buttermilk biscuit for a little Southern flair.

I stopped in for a visit this week and I was impressed by the presentation, pleased with the friendly service and pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed the dipping sauces. I recommend the sriracha tiki sauce.

My guest and I split a Joe's Classic Steampot for 2 ($40.99) boiled with a nice garlic herb butter flavor with Pacific Dungeness crab, sweet Snow crab, peel and eat shrimp and smoked sausage, along with potatoes and corn on the cob. The portions were plentiful but we managed to pick and suck ever bite of sweet crab meat from every leg in the pot.

And let me recommend the Great Balls of Fire ($7.19) appetizer to start. The crunchy balls of crab were filled with jalapenos and cream cheese with a planko breadcrumb coating. Excellent.

“Crab is our middle name, and our guests expect a wide variety, all served up fresh and just like they do it at the shore,” said Joe’s Crab Shack Vice President of Marketing Janet Gieselman. “This season’s new twist on our popular Crab Buckets is an invitation to our guests to strap on a bib, crack a crab and dip into the 15 different flavor combinations.”

Joe’s also is rolling out its new Shack Calamari topped with Joe’s famous tangy Shack Sauce; the Southern Samplerfeaturing shrimp toast, crab fritters and fried pickles served with remoulade and ranch dressing; and Mahi Kabobbers – three skewers of mahi-mahi, bacon-wrapped shrimp, red peppers and red onions served with potatoes and corn hash.

Even the bar menu gets an update, with refreshing new Mason jar drinks, including the Patio Punch featuring Malibu Rum and DeKuyper Peachtree Schnapps, the Honey Peach Smash featuring Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey whiskey, and Remy Red Sangria featuring Remy Martin VS, Bacardi Rum and cabernet sauvignon.

The new menu items are available at all Joe’s locations through April 21. For a full menu, go to www.joescrabshack.com/menu. For locations, visit www.joescrabshack.com/locations.

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