Summer just isn't the same without cracking into a heap of steamed crabs, crab legs, or even soft-shell crab or crab cocktail, for that matter. The tasty crustacean signals the arrival of long, lazy days by the ocean. It's the season when you can really take your time, get messy, and enjoy pulling the succulent meat from its shell with long-stemmed forks or just your hands. With a squeeze of lemon, or a dip of butter or Old Bay or vinegar, it's one of summer’s great pleasures.
And where do you go to get this summer staple? While Maryland might be known for its summertime crab fests, there are actually great crab spots all over the country. Different regions mean different kinds of crab, too, like Dungeness on the West Coast and Blue on the East. Whether you're way down south, way out west, or somewhere in between, we've found 10 of the best, tried and true places across the U.S. to eat crab this summer. From an outdoor, dockside shanty, to an urban crab oasis, to a white-linen experience, you’ll definitely have a spot (or several) where you can get crackin'.