Come experience Maryland seafood in Howard County! With a nearby harbor in Annapolis and the Atlantic Ocean only a short drive away, our restaurants serve up a catch with their prized culinary seafood scene. Whether taking a stroll on the Lakefront in Columbia or window shopping and enjoying the beautiful river views throughout the county, you’re never far from sensational fresh, local seafood.

Crazy for crabs

Did you know Howard County is on the Maryland Crab and Oyster Trail? Choose from restaurants specializing in coastal seafood to find laid-back, back-to-basics eating with a warm and welcoming atmosphere.

Enjoy cracking crabs with wooden mallets on a newspaper-lined table and partake in the Maryland tradition of crabs and beer. You might find them covered in Old Bay seasoning, a unique blend of herbs and spices that originated along the coast of the Chesapeake Bay over 75 years ago by McCormick & Co. One of our local hot spots is R&L Crab, which delivers steamed blue crabs directly to your doorstep!

R&L Crab Co

R&L Crab Co

For the flavor of crab without the work of cracking them, try the crab cakes at Hudson Coastal, soft shell crabs at Sushi Sono, crab pretzels at Frisco and the Reckless Shepherd, crab soup at Blackwall Barn & Lodge, or crab dip at HoCo Brew Hive. Ale House Columbia is a family-friendly setting to enjoy an authentic Maryland crab cake.

Bring on the Seafood

Get your fill of local wild oysters, lobster rolls, and seafood stew at The Walrus Oyster & Ale House. Head to Grill Marx Columbia Steakhouse & Raw Bar and order a seafood tower that will be the talk of your trip. Don't miss the branzino at Grille 620, a boutique steak and seafood restaurant with Mediterranean-inspired flavors.

GrillMarx Seafood Tower

GrillMarx Steakhouse & Raw Bar Seafood Tower

International flavors

In Koreatown, you’ll find a wealth of seafood dishes prepared in various ways. Bring your friends for a shared dining experience at Hot Pot Hero Ellicott City, where you can cook mussels, clams, or shrimp at your table. Experience the fruit of the sea—Frutti di Mare in Italian—at Stella Notte with a bowl of shell pasta topped with scallops, shrimp, mussels, and clams.

Many of our high-quality sushi restaurants serve a crab roll. At Sushi Sono, you can experience full pieces of crab with the soft-shell crab sushi rolls and the soft-shell crab appetizer, a whole crab chopped up and fried. Dine in the restaurant overlooking Lake Kitamaqundi, or order your seafood feast to-go and enjoy a picnic on the waterfront.

Soft Shell Crab Picnic Lake Kittamaqundi

Sushi Sono's Soft Shell Crab Roll

Freshness you can count on

J.J. McDonnell & Co, a seafood distributor based in Elkridge, provides fresh and frozen seafood to stores and restaurants along the East Coast. They partner with local fishermen to reduce the company’s carbon footprint and communicate directly about where their products are sourced. Don’t miss their annual month-long Seafood Crawl. One ticket allows you to taste crab cakes from participating restaurants around the state, several of which are right here in Howard County.