Nancy and I spent a day in Cove Point after Liza, Michael, Ella, and Lily left for an important birthday party, so Nancy and I went out for lunch. We’d heard great things about the CD Cafe down in Solomons, and decided to give it a try. We’d actually had carry out from CD back in the summer, but I ended up just getting a gyro: most dishes seemed too complex, too carefully prepared to eat on the Solomons boardwalk. The gyro was good, as was the salad Nancy ordered, but neither really tested the more challenging dishes on the menu.
By now, however, having been vaccinated, we were ready to go back for a real test. It was sure to be a slow day because of ice storms and an ongoing wintry mix of precipitation — a good day to stay inside. And the CD Cafe is a good place for dining indoors. The six or so tables are widely spaced. It’s a pleasant, welcoming space, and service is friendly and prompt.
Nancy ordered a crab cake over sun-dried tomato risotto.
And I ordered lobster and broccoli rabe over crab-stuffed ravioli.
Nancy was very pleased with her crab cake, and Nancy is a tough judge of crab cakes. She immediately volunteered that there was not too much bread, which is key. And it was a big crab cake — a good buy. I exercised my self-declared reviewer’s privilege and had a taste. While, needless to say — but I’ll say it anyway — it wasn’t quite as good as Nancy’s crab cakes, it was very good, packed with tasty crabmeat. Nancy also enjoyed the risotto, as did I.
My lobster and crab dish sounds like it would be an easy winner. Lobster is great, crab is great. What could go wrong? Actually, lots of things could and so often do go wrong. The lobster could be overcooked and tough, or it could be disapppointingly skimpy. The ravioli could be a mass of dough that smothers the crab flavor — and it’s easy to smother crab flavor.
Nothing at all was wrong at the CD Cafe. Nothing. The lobster was tender and delicious. The ravioli had a high ratio of filling to pasta, and the crab flavor came through boldly. The sauce was delicious, and the inclusion of the nice leafy broccoli rabe was brilliant. It balanced the richness of the rest of the dish beautifully. This was a thoughtful and well executed dish.
What a good lunch! And what a generous lunch. Nancy had a good bit left over and made a light dinner out of it. My dish also was very generous, but it was so good that when I was through there was nothing left but a memory.
There are a lot of reasons to visit Solomons. It’s a lovely town, a boating center where water views abound, and with much to see and do. The Calvert Marine Museum, which is a surprisingly good museum, one whose exhibits draw you in, transforms into a major concert venue attracting crowds of thousands with major entertainers — at least in normal times. There are a lot of restaurants, and we’ve eaten at several highly recommended places so far. The CD Cafe is hands down the best. Give it a try.
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