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Category Archives: Open Year Round

J’s Oyster Bar – Portland, Maine

Lobster Roll at J's Oyster Bar Portland, Maine

Cool little, tiny divey bar with tables on the dock in cute old port section.  Kind of like what a lobster shack might be like in winter…with booze.  Rocking great 80′s hits, fun vibes.  Very crowded even at 2pm on Thursday in winter.  Packed with locals, always a good sign.  Oysters did look delish but bypassed that for lobster stew and lobster roll.  The menu said stew was in clear broth but was divine pink creamyness packed with lobster chunks.  Extremely good stuff, might go back just for that.  Lobster roll was good but nothing memorable.  I liked that meat was served dry with mayo on side.  All claw meat, smallish chunks,cold, minimal spongey.  Hot dog roll seemed a bit tastier than the usual white wonder bread.  Nicely buttery grilled on inside and outside.  I, of course, requested butter and used stew as topping a lot.  Not sure why no one serves a stew lobster roll.  If I were making a lobster roll establishment, I would give three options, butter, mayo and lobster stew topping.  I really think the stew could be a winner.  Overall not bad, but the stew is what I’ll be thinking about.

Visited March 2011

J's Oyster on Urbanspoon

Max Oyster Bar – West Hartford, Connecticut

Lobster Roll at Max Oyster Bar West Hartford, Connecticut

You can’t do‏ a lobster trail if you’re not going to try out the locals.  I generally love this restaurant, so high hopes.  The service is consistently good.  Lucy and I got the hot, butter lobster roll.  Not bad, a little too finely chopped for me, some tail, not as flavorful as I might have liked. The meat amount was a little skimpy, but the bread was a fresh baked type roll, so that’s good.   But the kicker was the dagger af a claw inside shell that I got in the roof of my mouth (photo below, it was worth sharing).  Ouch, no harm done, but I expected better from Max’s.  The guy we were eating with brought it to the waiter’s attention, since we’re too chicken, showed him the weapon, and we got free dessert.  Well, one dessert for three people.  It was good, truffle beignets.  I will say that he ordered the lobster cobb salad and it looked like a much better choice.  Definitely getting that next time.

The offending shard
The offending shard

Visited September 2010

Max's Oyster Bar on Urbanspoon

City Fish – Wethersfied, Connecticut

Hot Lobster Roll at City Fish Wethersfield, Connecticut

I’ve had this roll b‏efore, got turned onto it by my boss and must say it’s one of my faves in CT, close to home, open year round, easy.  One reason I love it is that they use a steak/hoagie/sub roll instead of the usual wonder bread hot dog roll.  I am a big fan of alternate rolls.  I feel like they really set a roll apart as unique.  I don’t like a roll that competes with the lobster, I just prefer a more artisan roll, idealy from a local bakery or something, just not out of a grocery store bag.  I also feel the wonder bread roll is really not sturdy enough to hold up to a lobster roll and especially not a hot one.  Anyway, the roll is good and makes for a huge roll.  I would really call it more of a hoagie/grinder.  You could split this and not feel deprived, particularly with the included side of fries or chowder, both of which are good choices.  The meat includes hunks of tail and claw and is almost entirely free of spongy pieces, just a few to add color.  Usually super delish, but on its off days, could use more butter and at times can be a bit overcooked and chewey.  They make cold with mayo or hot with butter and both are great.  Can take out or eat in the nice dining room where you can get a beer.  This is also where I go to get my picked lobster meat if I’m in the mood for making my own.  Really love this place and feel it doesn’t get enough attention in the lobster roll review circuit because it is well off the shore areas.  Yum, more for me!

Visited August 2010 and many other times

City Fish on Urbanspoon

Mike’s Clam Shack – Wells, Maine

Lobster Roll at Mike's Clam Shack Wells, Maine

Kind of tough to f‏ind the takeout window.  Roll was pretty good.  Roll was nicely grilled and quite warm, contrasted nicely with cold meat.  Meat was all whole claws coated in a bit of mayo.  Not my favorite, but ok.  Spongey parts had a bit slippery texture instead of the spongey texture, which I think is better, if you have to have spongey pieces.

September 2010

Mike's Clam Shack on Urbanspoon

The Beach Plum – North Hampton, New Hampshire

Lobster Roll at The Beach Plum North Hampton, New Hampshire

That’s right‏, New Hampshire.  This place wasn’t on any of my lists, mostly because I usually search in Maine.  But, on the way to Maine, we passed a billnoard that said this place was recently voted best lobster roll in the northeast.  So, we had to try it.  HOLY MONSTER LOBSTER ROLL!!!  I have tried many a lobster roll and this was easily three times as much meat as the largest I have ever see.  And yes, I do include Red’s Eats in that statement.  This place makes Reds look skimpy.  To call it a lobster roll doesn’t even seem right.  It’s more like a lobster roll with enough leftovers on top for three more rolls.  There’s a reason they serve it with a fork.  This was, I’m betting, a full pound of meat or close to it.  I’ve seen people complain on food boards that a roll claimed to have a pound of meat on it, but totally had about 3-4oz.  These people are morons because I have been to many of these places and what they say is “the meat from a one pound lobster”.  If you have ever ordered a one pound lobster in the shell, you know the amount of meat is no where close to one pound.  However, I kid you not when I say a pound of meat.  On top of that, I ordered the small one.  They also had a lobster sub ($19) which the lady at the counter said was a bit more meat, which who knows what that means by this place’s standards.  I overheard a girl in line talking about how huge it was she went home and made 3 sandwiches out of the extra meat, she ordered the lobster roll to eat there.  They also had a foot long lobster roll ($28), I guess for if you’re planning a party.  Ok, enough about the hugeness, BTW I didn’t make it through the roll.  The flavor was pretty good, but not particularly flavorful.  The roll itself was a regular roll, nicely butter grilled.  Meat was cold with mayo, but I wouldn’t say too much.  There was also not a spongy piece in sight (a good thing), but also no tail (a bad thing in my book).  Overall delish and by far the best deal I have ever gotten.  I could have made about 15 regular size rolls with this roll (maybe a slight exadgeration, but not much).  The place was also very cute, right across from the beach, lots of flowers and picnic tables.  And if all that wasn’t enough, they have a huge homeade ice cream selection and my absolute favorite pumpkin was in season.  Mmm lobster roll and pumpkin ice cream butterscotch sundae by the beach on the last gorgeous Saturday in September.  Doesn’t get much better than that.

P.S – In the photos, there is a photo of the two lobster rolls we ordered and then there is another photo with my one lobster roll after I moved enough meat to the side to be able to even try to pick it up.  Insane amount of lobster.  According to their website, they now have a year round location in Portsmouth!!

One Lobster roll with meat moved off so it could be picked up.
One Lobster roll with meat moved off so it could be picked up.
Two Lobster Rolls
Two Lobster Rolls

Visited September 2010