The round-up: crack into the Gold Coast’s most delicious crab and crustacean dishes
Let’s take a moment to thank all of the soft-shell crabs out there for reigniting every (sea)foodie’s love affair with sweet-fleshed crustaceans. Yes, crab is king – but from humble beginnings on the sandy ocean floor, we’re seeing bugs, yabbies, lobsters and prawns frequenting the porcelain plates in the most delicious ways possible – and we’re loving it. In the name of spring and fresh seafood, we’ve done the trawling for you to round-up the top spots on the Gold Coast to get your crustacean fix.
Fu Manchu Oriental Kitchen: Using locally caught crab fresh off the trawler, share-food gem Fu Manchu’s Singapore chilli crab takes this crustacean to a new level. Served with roti and char-grilled corn (plus or minus a Tiger beer), this is one dish you will definitely not share.
The Fish House: If you’ve only ever associated a yabby with spending hours trying to scoop them from the sand on low-tide as a kid – then get your head together because these tasty little morsels are just delicious. The red-claw yabby risotto with white wine, prawn stock and ras el hanout is simple, yet incredibly tasty – in true Fish House style.
Allure on Currumbin: If you love a good bisque, you can thank the French – they do crustaceans really, really well. Allure’s blue swimmer crab bisque makes for a glorious starter, as does the ravioli of crustaceans on butternut pumpkin velvet with shaved fennel. Get on this.
Etsu Izakaya: You’ll find a number of sweet, sweet crustaceans spread across Estu’s menu, such as Moreton Bay bug tempura with amazu, watermelon and coriander. The Spider Maki – soft-shell crab in an inside-out sushi roll with tobiko, ao-nori and sesame seeds, along with the soft-shell crab with spinach puree and yuzu aioli, are just too damn good not to get a mention.
Rick Shores: Righto, all you bug lovers listen up – if you haven’t tried Rick’s Fried Bug Roll with gem lettuce and sriracha, then you haven’t lived. Go there and experience it for yourself, now. You’re welcome.
Jimmy Wah’s: Renowned for its fresh and fragrant Vietnamese fare, Jimmy Wah’s soft-shell crab with green papaya, pomelo, beans and peanuts gives a punchy, flavour-packed twist to this trendy crustacean.
The Boatshed Restaurant & Bar: If you’re one for cracking a crab claw shell to reveal the sweet, juicy flesh, then grab a friend and share The Boatshed’s seafood platter – along with the giant claws you’ll also get fresh local jumbo prawns, oysters, calamari and smoked salmon. With this platter and those Currumbin Creek views – there’s not much more you need in life.
Seascape Restaurant + Bar: Enjoy your crustaceans with a panoramic view at Seascape in Surfers Paradise – start with the West Australian lobster medallion mornay with smoked barley and cucumber, followed by the popular blue swimmer crab raviolo with hen’s yolk, pecorino, spinach puree and a touch of chilli. A unique (and a little bit fancy) spin on aquatic nosh.
The Fish Emporium: The soft-shell crab here is ridiculously good, and The (talented) Fish Emporium crew adds a decent kick with cabbage, peanut slaw, Szechuan pepper dust and lime dressing. The tempura bug dish has a light crunch with a splash of tang from the chilli mayo and pickled pawpaw. Most certainly keeps up with its namesake.
Glass Dining & Lounge Bar: Can’t decide? You can have it all at Glass with its popular hot seafood platter – grilled prawns, bugs, Alaskan snow crab (howzat for a crustacean fix), plus other underwater goodies like oysters, octopus and market fish. Best devoured with a sauvignon blanc in hand.
Burgster: Even though we unashamedly have an obsession with burgers, the Moreton Bay bug-tail burger at Burgster in Palm Beach makes it into the round-up on its own merit – bug tails in chilli, parsley and garlic, with lemon mayo and lettuce on a shiny brioche bun. This will complete you.
Justin Lane Establishment: If the idea of tender, juicy prawns gets you going, then tuck in to one of Justin Lane’s finest pizza combo’s – prawn, calamari, garlic, mozzarella, chilli, parsley, lemon. While we’re at it, Justin’s does a delectable plate of Mooloolaba king prawns with aioli (we’re slightly hooked).
Hellenika: With spanner crab in season, Hellenika’s traditional Greek kritharaki is a standout from its village dishes menu – baked orzo pasta with Queensland spanner crab. It’s soft, light and delicious – definitely include this one at your next Hellenika feast. Opa!
Omeros Bros: Long-renowned for its top-notch seafood fare (and those marina views), Omeros Bros keeps it totally fresh – and you can’t get any more fresh than live lobsters! Choose your own lobster and have it poached then chilled, or flame-grilled with mornay or lemon butter (because butter makes everything better).
Costa D’oro: Everyone loves a good prawn. And we reckon that perfectly cooked prawns paired with fresh pasta is hands-down one of the best combos, ever. It just works. This Italian gem in Surfers Paradise knocks up a mean fettuccine, featuring fresh local king prawns, spinach, bacon and just the right amount of cream. Drooling? Same here.
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