Speedy service and sumptuous seafood – Features Reporter Emma Blunt indulges with a meal that’s worth shelling out for at Fancy Crab
Boasting a covetable postcode in London’s swanky Marylebone, Fancy Crab plays homage to the world’s most sought-after shellfish – the Red King Crab.
The restaurant’s décor strikes the perfect balance of luxury and comfort, from the exposed brickwork and marble table tops to the giant crab mural and playful artworks recreated with crabby additions.
In keeping with the relaxed dining, the service is abundantly friendly and staff can be seen wearing a fun blue bowtie decorated with red crabs. Even the smallest touches have been thought through.
Striking blue tiles at the back of the restaurant draw every diners’ attention to the open kitchen and glass cabinet, where the Red King Crab takes pride of place on display over crushed ice.
Fancy Crab sets itself apart from others with an imaginative menu showcasing the versatility of this delicacy. Additional treats from the sea are also available, including incredible tasting cocktails, equally delicious platters and side dishes, each complementing the King Crab in their own way.
Unlike other seafood, the Red King Crab can only be found in the free sea, and must be fished in the extreme and unforgiving conditions of the Arctic Ocean, making it clear to see why the crustacean is extremely valuable and expensive.
Fished by the Northwest Fishing Consortium – the restaurant receives the crab directly from their supplier, ensuring peak quality and carrying the blue MSC label. This means all the seafood served at the Fancy Crab is both delicious and sustainably sourced.
Fancy Crab also ensures all the crab served are only male adults – so as not to effect procreation in the Arctic. Once caught, the crabs are vetted by gender and size and boiled in salt water on the ship.
Every ounce of the Red King Crab’s taste is preserved by Fancy Crab’s unique technology, ensuring the delicate flavour of the meat is kept.
We tried the recommendations of our knowledgeable waitress, which started with the premium seafood platter.
A ‘shell-fishly’ indulgent platter of mussels, clams, jersey oysters, crab claws, tiger prawns and shell-on Atlantic prawns, served with squid ink crackers topped with wasabi mayonnaise and warm bread.
Three types of house condiments – Bloody Mary sauce, sesame and soy sauce and a take on Thousand Island sauce added bursts of heat and saltiness to the incredibly fresh and juicy meat – this really was any seafood lover’s dream!
Also on the platter was an octopus carpaccio and scallop ceviche – juicy scallops paired with charred corn and zingy citrus notes to create the fresh flavour of every great ceviche.
On to the main event, this is where the Red King Crab takes centre stage. The leg and claw meat was served in its shell alongside an indulgent homemade garlic butter sauce. Baking over charcoal allowed the flavour of the crab to shine, with the meat tasting fresh, succulently sweet and ridiculously moreish.
Side dishes of Tenderstem broccoli with roasted almonds, skinny fries and Jerusalem artichokes with garlic and rosemary perfectly complemented the crab without distracting from the star itself.
Always room for something sweet, we shared the fancy lemon tart for dessert. This deconstructed tangy lemon meringue was placed on a beautifully decorated plate ornate with a whorl of berry coulis, flaky crumbs and fresh berries – proving it’s not just the crab that’s fancy at this restaurant!
The Wordrobe Verdict
Holy crab! The chefs at Fancy Crab really know how to take a single lavish ingredient and reinvent it in various to create a brilliantly innovative menu that will keep every diner interested!
If you want to get your claws into some of the highest quality and sustainably sourced crab in London, then Fancy Crab is definitely worth shelling out for – one bite and you’ll be hooked.
Words by Emma Blunt