Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Lobster Rolls

The editors of Down East magazine, in their book Best Maine Lobster Rolls, should have titled it Everything You Need (or want) To Know About Maine Lobster Rolls.

From the opening section which covers the history of lobster rolls to the last section featuring the 75 best lobster rolls in Maine, this book is a thorough and comprehensive examination of the lobster roll. They even tell us how to eat a lobster roll (my advice – open your mouth very wide!).

I especially enjoyed the story of the biggest lobster roll ever, a 61 foot, 9 ½ inch roll stuffed with 45 pounds of lobster meat. Yummy!

It was interesting to learn that a tiny restaurant in Manhattan turned the lobster roll into a culinary obsession. And I was pleased to learn of the places which have gotten creative, including Kerry Altiero at Café Miranda in Rockland, a very favorite restaurant of Linda and me.

Kerry was Lobster Chef of the Year, and mixes lobster with garlicky aioli and stuffs it into his addictive fresh focaccia. Trust me, this is both yummy and filling.

And of course, the book includes Laura Benedict’s Red Barn in Augusta, where their foot-long lobster roll is very popular (yup, I’ve enjoyed it many times, along with their delicious seafood stew).

The book includes beautiful photos including one of Port Clyde Harbor, another favorite place, where Linda and I catch the ferry to Monhegan.

There is one troubling aspect to this book – I don’t know how I am ever going to be able to get to all of these wonderful places to try their lobster rolls. But it’ll be fun to try!

George Smith

About George Smith

George stepped down at the end of 2010 after 18 years as the executive director of the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine to write full time. He writes a weekly editorial page column in the Kennebec Journal and Waterville Morning Sentinel, a weekly travel column in those same newspapers (with his wife Linda), monthly columns in The Maine Sportsman magazine, two outdoor news blogs (one on his website, georgesmithmaine.com, and one on the website of the Bangor Daily News), and special columns for many publications and newsletters. Islandport Press published a book of George's favorite columns, "A Life Lived Outdoors" in 2014. In 2014, George also won a Maine Press Association award for writing the state's bet sports blog. In 2016, Down East Books published George's book, Maine Sporting Camps, and Islandport Press published George and his wife Linda's travel book, Take It From ME, about their favorite Maine inns and restaurants.