Tuesday, June 10, 2008

NY Times Rips Oriole Park's Crab Cakes

I got wind of this article that appeared in the New York Times this week titled, "Buy Me Some Sushi and Baby Back Ribs", about a culinary critic who visited a number of ballparks by a reader, Brendan Spiegel. The author of this piece, Peter Meehan, sampled food at 12 ballparks, including Baltimore's Oriole Park at Camden Yards and gave his opinion about what he devoured.

Long story short, he does not have a high opinion of a certain concession stand -- most likely Charm City Seafood (he doesn't name it the in article, but I assume this where he went) and here's what he said"

"And in Baltimore, I came face to face with a crab cake sandwich that edged out guinea pig (yes, guinea pig) as the least appetizing dish I have ever tried..."

If you read the article further, on page three, Meehan chronicles his sampling of Maryland's state staple -- the crab cake -- from a concession stand at Camden Yards.
Still, that dish did not compare to the horror that I encountered in Baltimore, at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Between innings, I happened upon a stand called Charm City Seafood behind home plate, whose crab cake sandwich had just been touted in The Baltimore Sun that very morning for its “artful seasoning.” So I ordered one.

It was handed to me in a paper basket with a packet of tartar sauce. The bready puck was tepid, soggy and fishy, like a sponge that had been used to clean fish. I couldn’t manage a second bite: it was, without question, the worse dish I had the displeasure of sampling at a ballpark.
As a fan who attends upwards of 40 plus games at Oriole Park at Camden Yards, I can certainly attest that the stadium serves great crab cakes -- in fact, I order from Charm City Seafood and also get one from the Championship cafe often.

Perhaps Mr. Meehan got served a bad one, or had a server who didn't pay attention or even care. Who knows. It's a shame that's what his impression the crab cake was, and hopefully he doesn't begrudge everything else in the park.

I do have one question -- how could he miss Boog's BBQ? He may or may not be a baseball fan or just doesn't know the region, but I figured that should have been one obvious place should gone to.

Whether or not we harbor against Mr. Meehan's piece is up to us (some Baltimore fans do have a long memory); however, I did find it informative. For some, food makes the ballpark experience rich, but let's hope it didn't spoil his visit.


Mac G said...

I stopped going to Boog's years ago because the meat was piss poor.

I love this squad and cherish every win over Boston.

Love the blog, keep it up.

Maryland Orioles' Fan said...

MacG, Thanks! I guess in a place where you have to make food ever so fast, you can screw up. I would not say Boog's BBQ is my favorite place to go -- and yeah the meat could have a lot more flavor, but I figured he would have known about it.

I appreciate the kind words. We may not be contenders, but this team is pretty much competitive and has kept things very interesting.

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