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Show me the way to go home,
I’m tired and I want to go to bed,
Cos I had a little drink about an hour ago,
And it’s gone right to my head,
No matter where I roam,
On land or sea or foam,
(JAWS original motion picture soundtrack 1975)
I am a great fan of movies and the iconic scene where the above song comes from is the seminal movie Jaws by Steven Spielberg when he was a young edgy rookie director as opposed to the shadow of himself now.
In the scene, the Quint, Brody, and Hooper are having a dinner of seafood and in a show of camaraderie sing this song all while they unknowingly are being dinner plans for Jaws.
I have always been fascinated by the majesty of the sea, I love to wonder about the immenseness of the Ocean and have loved the varied treasure trove that the sea provides as a way of sustaining us.
This is particularly evident when I visit the waterfront fish market in Deira Dubai, This is the Dubai the tourists don’t see.
I visit the fish market at Fajar time when the fishermen are just landing their catch, the market is an, amazing atmosphere of hustle and bustle, we have Indian fishermen offloading the dhows with the days catch, cigarettes nonchalantly hanging from their lips, and wearing cut off denim shorts or lungis, their mahogany skin wrinkled like flaking varnish,
Then we have the enterprising Iranian auctioneers who sell the fish, they prance from one basket to another and shout in some indecipherable language while the buyers use hand and finger motions to buy the fish,
All this is closely monitored by the fish market and dhow owners they are the local Gulf Arabs in their splendid ice white Kandoras, they watch the action like pit bosses watching the croupier and punters at a Casino.
After watching this theatre I proceed to the fish stalls and inspect the displayed dish, the Tiger Prawns from the Bay of Bengal, the size of fists, Angelfish, butterflyfish, and cuttlefish are among the fish of the Indian Ocean. Giant clams, gray reef sharks, manta rays, and spiny dogfish are other marine animals on display,
I then purchase my fish and prawns and take them to a wee Dhaba where the Bengali owner, splendid in his lungi and vest cooks the fish in some spices and butter and serves with some chilli sauce and fresh pitta now that is what I call breakfast of champions.
Shai Foodwala and I decided to visit Crabshakk, after many a recommendation.
Crabshakk is a compact wee restaurant in the deepest darkest Finnieston,
As we walked in we were welcomed with the smell of the sea mixed with the sweet-sharp smell of malt vinegar.
we were promptly seated on the mezzanine by the jolly owner and then he announced the specials of the day
we kicked off the proceedings by choosing the fresh Loch Fyne Oysters
The Oysters were served on a bed of crushed Ice and accompanied with a shallot vinagrette the Oysters can only be discribed as tatsting of the the sea, absolutely delicious
Next up was the tiny whitebait which was dusted in plain flour and flash cooked in golden oil, the fish was light and fresh and prefect with some cheeky straw fries.some wou;d say posh fish and chips
The one fish that challenges a chef is the Squid, this seperates the proverbial men from the boys, Squid if overcooked becomes rubbery and foul,
this Squid was done to perfection the temputa batter was light, flakey, and crispy the Squid was firm, not rubbery. very enjoyable.
The amchove butter cooked scallops…what a masterpiece the natural aweet nutty tasting notes of fresh Scottish Scallops was enhanced by the anchovy infused butter, eaten with fresh rte bread
Halibut is a hard fish to master, the cousin if the Tilapia the firm sweet flesh is easy to over cook and equally under season, this was dusted with flour and baked and accpmpanied with creamy herb potatoes.
Absolutely point on, the seasining and technique were excellent.
The House Crab Cakes were wee but packed with serious flavour, crabby but not stodgy,
The Crabshakk was fantastic, the food was fantastic pure and simple, i can go on with superlatives but basically, Crabshakk is very very good,
The superior local ingredients did the talking rather than complicated names and egotistical dishes.
Simple and delicious and attentive staff not to mention friendly
Lets save the OCEANS its the largest eco system and the planets life support sysytem
The Star of the Meal?
I would go for the Baked Halibut and the Crab Cakes
The miss of the Meal?
I would not say miss but less good of all the famtastic dishes was the Musselsm the other ingredients overpowered the Mussels.
So how did The Crabshakk do against its peers?
Definitely on par with Gamba
The Chicken, Beef, and Lamb is NOT Served in the restaurant
Alcohol is served on the Premises
Pork is NOT served on the Premises
100% impartial Guarantee
Alfie Foodwala visits all restaurants anonymously and pays for the bill like any other customer, Alfie Foodwala does not except free meals in return for meals
All reviews are the personal opinion of Alfie Foodwala based on his 30-year ex