With the spring, comes the launch of our other favorite time of year: lobster season! To celebrate that and one of our hottest Bethesda Row restaurants, Luke’s Lobster, we asked some genuine Mainiacs to help us crack the shell on properly enjoying the scrumptious crustacean.
Skip the bib. No self-respecting Mainer would don one. “It’s a matter of pride,” says our friend Laurie, who comes from a long line of Maine lobstermen. “We associate it with outlanders, tourists and other people who need to flagrantly advertise they they’re eating lobster. And, we don’t care if our summah clothes get juice on them.”
Get cracking. “I like to start with the tail,” says Mike, a 25-year resident of Camden, Maine. He rips that off and then rinses off the green “tomalley” or liver. As Laurie says, “It’s like any kind of liver: either a ‘yum’ or ‘yuck’ for everyone.” Both Mike and Laurie agree the best method from here is to pick out all of the meat and then eat with clean fingers.
Use the right tools for the job. Use your fingers to twist off the claws. Twist in the opposite direction of the joint. Allow the water to drain out. Aside from your fingers, you can use a small nutcracker and pick to nudge out every last bit of sweet lobster.
Done like a dinnah. Once you’ve removed all of the meat, do as Mike does and let it all sit for a few minutes in a bowl of melted butter. Laurie foregoes the butter and tosses her lobster with mayo, a splash of cider vinegar and fresh tomatoes. What about a squeeze of citrus? Mike says, “I have never seen a Mainer use lemon. Ever.”