Crab Cake Sandwich – Alcove, Hillhurst Ave, Los Angeles, CA

The last time I had a crab cake sandwich, I found it a bit plain. A lightly dressed slaw was one of the things I suggested might improve things, so I was happy to see the crab cake sandwich at Alcove came with just that. Beyond the slaw, though, there wasn’t a whole lot to get excited about. It wasn’t a bad sandwich. There was plenty of fresh crab in a well fried (perhaps overdone) patty. The roll was fresh. I would have preferred a traditional tarter to the chipotle aioli, but the aioli wasn’t bad. Essentially the whole thing just ranked squarely at “capably executed,” and it’s difficult to get excited about capable execution. It’s all well and good for a quick sandwich at a lunch counter, or a $6 number wrapped in butcher paper and only destined to hit the spot, but a $15 sandwich at a fine sit-down establishment really ought to aim for a higher standard, don’t you think? The very fact that you’re putting together a crab cake sandwich really implies more advanced obligations. I’ll have to try another sandwich at Alcove, some chicken number, to see if their other offerings end up so middling. Given the crab cake sandwich, I won’t be holding my breath.

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