map: (Some Of) Charleston’s Best She-Crab Soup


[flickr/SmitoniusAndSonata]

For a dose of real deal South Carolina lowcountry cuisine in Charleston, nothing beats a bowl of sherry-spiked she-crab soup. Unfortunately True she-crab soup is something of an oceanic ortolan, the rare, illegal French bird that gastronomes and gourmands salivate over (it’s illegal to sell them, but not to eat them – better get hunting!). Mature she-crab roe, the briny orange egg sacs that give the soup its telltale color, flavor and texture, are illegal to harvest in the state. However, it’s perfectly fine to use the roe of immature females — just think of them as ugly veal. From the silky smooth rendition at 82 Queen to a heartier version studded with jumbo lump crab meat at Hyman’s Seafood, crustacean-mad food fiends would do well to make the pilgrimage for this special taste of regional Southern cooking.

Zachary Feldman