Fitzie’s Marina Restaurant and Pub, Leonardtown, Maryland

As part of our St. Mary’s County riverside restaurant research, Nancy identified Fitzie’s as a place to check, so we decided to swing by and take a look one morning after buying some plants at a Loveville Amish farm. Our scouting expedition resulted in a big, if wary, thumbs up. We got there well before it opened, so we left and had lunch as Sweetbay on the Square in Leonardtown, but we bookmarked it, and returned with Liza and Michael and Ella and Lily.

Fitzie’s sits on Breton Bay off the Potomac River. The view over the water is wonderful. Fitzie’s itself is a pretty big place with one large room full of tables for eating steamed crabs, a separate bar/dining room, and, outside, a sandy area right on the water with hightop tables and a huge sandpile with toys so that young children can run around and play when they aren’t actively eating. There goes Lily.

We all grabbed a table and perused the menu.

I zeroed in on a crab cake, but was intrigued by the idea of Fitzie’s burger with crab dip, something I’d never tried. Michael, who’s spent a lot more time on the Bay, said that he liked the combination. Michael ordered one for himself, and that was enough for me. If you never try things, you can miss out on a lot. I ordered one, rare, and, feeling as expansive as my waist, I ordered some hushpuppies for the table, but quickly destroyed the evidence.

Liza and Nancy each ordered a salad with a crab cake, Nancy’s shown here in progress.

Ella and Lily once again shared orders of chicken tenders and macaroni and cheese, this time with applesauce.

The hushpuppies were very good, nicely crunchy and flavorful, and Liza was very pleased with her crab cake salad. Nancy wasn’t entirely satisfied, but couldn’t put her finger on the source of her dissatisfaction. She noted, however, that the crab cakes were just about all crab, with hardly any filling.

And now, the burger with crab dip. It was a burger to remember.

As you can see, it was cooked as close to rare as you can get, and it was loosely packed, as a burger should be. This was a top notch burger. And the crab dip added a very nice layer of savoriness, salty and rich. Is that what people mean by umami? The definitions I’ve seen have been vague and unhelpful, sort of like political speeches. It was a grand time as we all enjoyed the food and the setting. You can hardly find a better place to take young children, and the burger far exceeded my expectations. You should give it a try, especially in nice weather.

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