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Do you fancy a delicious lobster roll? This is a guide to where to find the best lobster roll in Maine. It also includes its history, some tips and seasonal information.
Best Lobster Place In Maine
What could be more satisfying than a proper lobster roll, packed with tender, sweet chunks of lobster and served with just the right amount of mayo and lemon to enrich that delicious meat? Maine Lobster Roll!
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With that said, Maine is home to some of the tastiest, freshest, and juiciest lobster rolls in the U.S., making New England’s northernmost state the place to be as a lobster roll “lover.”
Nevertheless, lobster rolls weren’t always a Maine holiday food. How did a humble hot dog bun filled with the simplest of ingredients rise to rock star status in the food world?
I recently fell in love with this dish and am fairly new to the world of lobster. Don’t worry because we’ve got you covered.
In this comprehensive Maine lobster roll guide, we’ll take a look at the best places in the state to visit in the lifetime of your savory roll friend.
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Let’s discuss and see what lobster rolls are, how they are made, a brief look at the rich history of Maine lobster rolls, and determine the best season to visit Maine to enjoy delicious freshly made lobster rolls.
One of the world’s tastiest sandwiches, the lobster roll is a relatively affordable way to stretch out and enjoy this premium ingredient without breaking the bank.
A traditional lobster roll is a sandwich filled with premium lobster meat soaked in butter and served on a steamed or grilled lobster bun – a hot dog bun or similar roll so that the opening of the sandwich is on the top instead of the side.
The key to this sweet sandwich is its freshness and simplicity, as the original lobster roll recipe consists of only three main ingredients: fresh pieces of lobster, bread and sauce.
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However, Maine’s famous lobster roll consists of just these three ingredients, with chunks of lobster gently tossed with good quality mayo.
Aside from mayo, every other addition to a Maine lobster roll is up for debate. You can add diced scallions or celery. A lobster roll may also include lemon juice, lettuce, salt and black pepper.
Like other culinary delights that come out of nowhere, the lobster roll has a rather murky origin story. Nevertheless, most historians believe that Perry’s Restaurant, a diner in Milford, Connecticut, circa 1929. made a lobster roll.
In those days, the sandwich was popular up and down the Connecticut coast, but not much beyond.
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Years later, a legendary Boston chef named Jasper White is credited with lobster roll sandwiches that took off in the 1980s when his versions of the dish were enjoyed at his waterfront restaurant.
In the 1990s, lobster rolls took off when New York chef Rebecca Charles began serving her Maine-style lobster rolls at her Pearl Oyster bar.
Fresh, steamed cuts of meat were piled into buttered buns before being lightly slathered with mayo and anchovies.
Since then, the lobster roll has solidified itself as a true American classic, along with hamburgers, buffalo wings, corn dogs and apple pies.
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In fact, the lobster sandwich put Maine and New England on the US culinary map.
Overall, lobster is harvested year-round by more than 6,000 lobstermen who work tirelessly year-round off the coast of Maine.
Still, when it comes to when lobster roll season is in Maine and New England, it’s hard to think of summer in New England and not think of some lobster rolls.
With this in mind, some of the highest numbers of lobsters come from lobstermen during the warm summer months when they are open around the clock to meet the needs of locals and tourists alike.
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There’s a great reason for that, too. Lobsters are more abundant in summer because they migrate closer to shore in warmer waters, often shedding their shells.
Now that you have a better understanding of what a lobster roll is, its importance and connection to the state of Maine, its rich history, and the season when lobsters are harvested most efficiently, it’s time to go ahead and present the best places you can eat a top-notch lobster roll in Maine.
Below, in no particular order, we’ll list the lobster roll establishments in Maine that deserve your visit on hot summer days.
As the name suggests, Gilbert’s chowder house specializes in chowder. Still, this no-frills eatery offers plenty of fresh Maine seafood, including one of the best lobster rolls in Maine!
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With generous chunks of sweet lobster tossed in mayo and served on a well-toasted hot dog bun and slaw alongside crispy French fries, all that’s left to complete the perfect New England look is a view and a cold drink.
Luckily, this eatery checks all those boxes with indoor or patio seating overlooking the water and local beer.
Stop by and enjoy the diner’s unique atmosphere, then grab an award-winning lobster roll or stew. Gilbert’s chowder house is open daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Sitting right on the edge of Sheepscot Bay, Five Islands Lobster Co. can be reached by land or sea.
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Located in the small fishing village of Georgetown, you can enjoy delicious food while enjoying the sights and sounds of what people call “Maine’s most beautiful harbor.”
Fresh from the cold deep water of the harbor directly into the kitchen, the Five Islands lobster is never kept in tanks.
While this restaurant is known for its fantastic lobster rolls, it also offers a variety of other fresh seafood such as shrimp, scallions, haddock, mussels and clams.
Make sure you top your plate with a homemade sauce like tartar sauce, cilantro mayo, or dill mustard. BYOB and enjoy great food at this classic Maine establishment.
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Since this restaurant has outdoor seating, they sometimes close in bad weather. Call ahead to check if they are open if the weather looks questionable.
If you’re driving through Portland, Maine, you’ll soon find that getting past Highroller Lobster for one of the best lobster rolls you’ve ever tried is a real challenge.
Packed with quite a few tasty, sweet, large chunks of lobster topped with your choice of unique spreads and sauces and served on grilled brioche buns freshly baked at a local Southside bakery, Highroller Lobster Co. is ideal. a modern example of regional traditions.
At the restaurant, you can pair your custom lobster roll with any number of cold brews or wines.
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Highroller Lobster is one of the fastest growing seafood favorites in the region for fresh and creative flavors. This lobster roll house is open daily from 11am. until late.
Since 2011 serving delicious seafood, this family-run restaurant is transforming from a small picnic table-like space to an indoor sit-down restaurant to meet the growing demand for delicious food!
While their classic lobster roll is a great option that won’t disappoint, Rusty Crab also offers clams, baked salmon with bourbon molasses, crab cakes, pasta, bacon cheeseburgers, chicken dishes, and the fan-favorite baked raspberry cheesecake.
Rusty Crab is open Wed-Sun 11am-8pm and sometimes Tuesday depending on the catch of the day. Be sure to check out their Facebook page for the latest updates.
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Scarborough Fish and Lobster is a decent example of a hole-in-the-wall eatery. It is full of coastal treasures that will satisfy your seaside cravings.
There’s no room for any fillers at Scarborough Fish and Lobster, and their lobster rolls are so fresh and delicious, you wouldn’t want anything to get in the way of the flavor anyway.
If you want to enjoy a double dose of lobster, you can grab a cup of lobster stew. Scarborough Fish and Lobster is open daily from 10am to 6pm.
Almost nothing can beat a fresh lobster roll on the ocean, and Bite Into Maine offers great local flavor with a view.
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Opposite Portland Head Light, the flagship food truck provides the perfect setting for a mid-day break while exploring Fort Williams Park in Cape Elizabeth.
Bite Into Maine is the place to be when it comes to lobster, with both Maine Style and Connecticut Style served on the food truck menu.
While their two locations are seasonal, you can always try their famous lobster rolls, melts, soups and more at their year-round takeout location, The Commissary, located in the U.S. Route One Oak Hill in Scarborough.
Located at the very end of Two Lights Road along the Cape Elizabeth coast, this award-winning restaurant has been serving scenic oceanfront dining for over 60 years.
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Here you can enjoy dinner under the lighthouse or sit in the cozy dining room and enjoy the open views of Portland Harbor.
While the lobster rolls are fresh and memorable at this location, The Lobster Shack is the place where
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