Today is National Lobster Day — and it kicks off the start of a season of sinking our teeth into one of our favorite beach-y treats! Lobster rolls are wicked popular in New England, of course, but restaurants around the country are also down with the summer-on-a-roll treat. Here are 16 restaurants where you can enjoy top lobster rolls on this delicious day, be it classic or one with a twist.
Baptiste & Bottle, Chicago, Illinois
Chef James Lintelmann’s chunky lobster roll keeps things interesting with a little fruit. The roll is created with housemade crème fraîche, fine herbs, shallots, chopped celery, and honey crisp apple. Make a reservation at Baptiste & Bottle.
Avenue Restaurant, Long Branch, New Jersey
Order the lobster roll and you’ll get fresh lobster with tomato, spicy mayo, oranges, and arugula, all crowning a brioche bun. The waterfront restaurant is reminiscent of a Parisian bistro and St. Tropez, too. Make a reservation at Avenue Restaurant.
Blue Island Oyster Bar & Seafood, Denver, Colorado
On lobster’s special day, Blue Island is serving its lemon-mayo-and-celery lobster roll, wrapped in butcher paper at a discounted price. Make a reservation at Blue Island Oyster Bar & Seafood.
Cull & Pistol Oyster Bar, New York, New York
Decision time: Order the Maine-style lobster roll — chilled lobster salad tossed in light mayo and scallion dressing. Or, Connecticut style — fresh-picked lobster meat warmed with butter and lemon with Kewpie mayo. Both come on a toasted top split bun. Make a reservation at Cull & Pistol Oyster Bar.
Vince Young Steakhouse, Austin, Texas
It’s’ a steakhouse, true, but on National Lobster Day, you gotta skip the steak and head straight for the lobster roll, built with butter-poached lobster, tarragon aioli, and butter lettuce, with a brioche bun. Make a reservation at Vince Young Steakhouse.
Rick Moonen’s RM Seafood Restaurant, Las Vegas, Nevada
Celebrity chef and seafood expert Rick Moonen’s lobster roll is created with shaved fennel, celery, and lemon crème fraîche on a buttery roll — what happens in Vegas also happens on Instagram in this case. Make a reservation at Rick Moonen’s RM Seafood Restaurant.
Ways & Means Oyster House, Huntington Beach, California
Order the W&M Lobster Roll and you’ll get chunks of Maine lobster claw meat, shredded cabbage, red bell peppers, and red onions tossed in a housemade aioli (with hints of vanilla and lavender). Make a reservation at Ways & Means Oyster House.
Paddlefish, Lake Buena Vista, Florida
The lobster roll at this modern seafood-centric Disney restaurant features one-and-a-quarter pounds of Maine lobster meat that’s dressed lightly in lemon-infused mayo and arrives on a buttered roll. Make a reservation at Paddlefish.
The Hourly Oyster House, Cambridge, Massachusetts
Purists take heart. You’ll find a classic New England lobster roll in this smart Cambridge restaurant — lobster meat with a hint of mayo on a griddled roll. Make a reservation at The Hourly Oyster House.
Siena Tavern, Chicago, Illinois
Top Chef alum Fabio Viviani’s lobster roll is on the lunch menu. It’s a citrus-poached lobster with frisee bacon vinaigrette, sliced tomato, herb mayo and it comes served on a toasted brioche bun with a side of crispy truffle fries. Make a reservation at Siena Tavern.
View, Oakdale, New York
Celebrate National Lobster Day and the view of Long Island’s Great South Bay. Order the New England roll—you’ll get perfectly chilled lobster salad on a buttered roll with a side of water vista and fries. Make a reservation at View.
Kingbird at the Watergate Hotel, Washington, D.C.
It’s a New England Lobster roll — with a twist. This ocean treat is created with yuzu mayonnaise, and scallions on a brioche bun along with classic pommes frites. Make a reservation at Kingbird at the Watergate Hotel.
Striper’s, Kennebunkport, Maine
The humble lobster roll gets a makeover, thanks to chef Gary Caron. The lobster meat is “pulled right from the waters glimpsed from the restaurant’s expansive windows” and bathed in a lemony aioli and served on the classic toasted hot dog bun — with French fries and truffle ketchup. Make a reservation at Striper’s.
The Bar Room, New York, New York
A fresh lobster roll in midtown Manhattan’s East Side in an Art Nouveau-inspired American bistro — only in New York. The lobster is tossed in a tarragon aioli and served on a buttered brioche bun with hand-cut fries. Perf with a Provence rosé. Make a reservation at The Bar Room.
SALT Kitchen & Bar, New Castle, New Hampshire
Made with Maine-sourced, hard-shell lobster meat, executive chef Ken Lingle’s roll is worth its salt. He lightly dresses the meat with a high-quality mayo, sea salt, white pepper, and lemon juice — and the roll is upgraded here to sub-sized and griddled in butter. Make a reservation at SALT Kitchen & Bar.
The Tiller at Cliff House, Cape Neddick, Maine
You’ll have a choice — mayo or lemon brown butter with your lobster. Either way, the Nubb’s Lobster Roll is created with poached lobster meat and served on a split-top hot dog bun. An ocean-view and lobster roll — perfect summer combo, if you ask us. Make a reservation at The Tiller at Cliff House.
What are your picks for the top lobster rolls to celebrate National Lobster Day? Tell us your faves here or over on Facebook, G+, Instagram, Pinterest, or Twitter. And, remember to snap + share your #dishpics with us on Instagram for a chance to win in our weekly giveaway. P.S.: Drink pics qualify as #dishpics.
Laurie Bain Wilson is a Boston-based journalist, author, and essayist who writes often about travel, food, and baseball. Find her on Twitter @laurieheather.
Photo credit: Joel Benjamin (The Hourly Oyster House)