Order the soft-shell crab at this Atlanta restaurant before it’s all gone

First-run soft-shell crab at Restaurant Eugene is an epicurean dream. / Photo by Ligaya Figueras

Dish of the Week: First-run soft-shell crab at Restaurant Eugene

“We let the ingredients write our menu,” said Atlanta chef and restaurateur Linton Hopkins.

Right now, that means that Doc Bill has been making the long drive from Sapelo Island to Atlanta to bring first-run soft-shell crab alive and kicking to Hopkins’ flagship Restaurant Eugene. There, executive chef Chris Edwards and his crew turn the fresh catch into an epicurean dream.

The crab – a huge, hefty creature – goes from buttermilk egg wash to a dredge through Anson Mills cornmeal seasoned with Creole seasoning to a dip in the deep fryer. Out it comes – crispy, juicy, meaty – to be plated with a not too tangy Sauce Louie of house mayo, hot sauce, lemon juice and scallions, along with springtime touches of shaved watermelon radish, early peas and minced onion.

While soft-shell crab will stick around at Restaurant Eugene until June, the first-run is, as Hopkins rightly put it “a celebration.” Don’t miss this party.

Restaurant Eugene, 2277 Peachtree Road, Atlanta. 404-355-0321, restauranteugene.com. 

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