Crappy photo courtesy of my iPhone. Sorry.
I love soft-shell crabs. How much? Well, on a recent visit to Father’s Office in Culver City, I skipped the restaurant’s famous burger in favor of a soft-shell crab special that was running that night. Let me emphasize something: I never skip the restaurant’s famous burger. Sure, Father’s Office has a full menu beyond its Father’s Office Burger, but in the ten or so years I’ve been going to Father’s Office, I have never, ever strayed from the burger. Leave it to my love for soft-shell crabs to mix things up.
You see, soft-shell crabs are highly seasonal, and there really aren’t too many spots in LA that serve them. Naturally, when I discovered that my little crabby friends were on the menu, I knew I had to pounce. I might not get another opportunity!
This of course leads to a significant question: was it worth eschewing the prized burger for a humble soft-shell crab?
Yes and no. The crab — beer-battered, fried, and placed atop a delicate arrangement of snap peas, wax beans, tomatoes, and a buttermilk sauce — is delicate, lovely, and full of that tangy richness that makes my eyes roll back in my head. DAMMIT I LOVE A GOOD SOFT-SHELL.
However, I was starving. Ravenous, even. And as much as I love me a soft-shell crab, one mere specimen on a plate does not an entree make. A fault of the restaurant? Not really. However, when I ordered the dish, I asked the friendly bartender if the crab was entree-sized or appetizer. The guy emphatically said it was a BIG meal. I can assure you that it was not.
My hands display how big the bartender said crab dish would be. As you can see, the actual serving was much smaller.
The point of all this is not to complain or ding the restaurant but merely to warn future patrons. By all means get the soft-shell crab. It’s delicious. But remember that it’s an appetizer, no matter what the servers say. My fellow diners, IndianJones and Kambra, can corroborate this.
Lesson learned: the Father’s Office burger will always be the main event.
3229 Helms Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90034
1018 Montana Ave,
Santa Monica, CA 90403