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Urban Lobster review - ugh

Went to Urban Lobster on Houston for lunch today. Not impressed.

The interior is done-up like a second-rate wrap place in a mall -- uncomfortable rickety plastic top stools and all.

The staff was friendly, but the woman behind the register was reaching under her shirt and massaging her belly while I was eating. A lady, I assume one of the owners, was at a table being very rude and bossy to some guy who was redesigning the layout on her menu or something. When he asked her for a pen, she snapped "What am I, your slave?"

People kept coming in trying to figure out what the place was ("You have fish n' chips?" "no;" "You sell coffee?" "no.").

I ordered the lobster roll. It comes in a plastic take away container even if you're staying (at least mine did). It's made with celery, which I'm not partial to, so I picked it out. The bun was a gummy bready mess with a bit of butter and not well toasted. I understand this isn't Mary's Fish Camp, but come on, toast the damn roll right at least.

The lobster meat was okay. The mayoniase had a weird aftertaste. Together it tasted fishy, which was less than ideal.

$20 with tax. Not worth it. Not returning.

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    1. Yeah, I went over the weekend and had a very uninspired Manhattan Clam Chowder. My husband had the lobster bisque which had waaayy too much sherry in it, giving it a weird medicinal flavor. The place has a great concept, but the execution is definitely lacking. And prices are pretty high -- $6 for soup, $7 for salad, and most of the seafood dishes are pushing $20.

      1. i can't wait to not go. thanks for the info. sounds awful and i do not like a bad Tides attitude as i'm a big fan of the place.

        1. Is this the place that opened only a few days ago? Thanks for the heads-up if it is!

          1. As per the usual, just because something seems simple it must be easy to do correctly.
            I am a chef and to do this type of food you really have to know what you are doing.
            How many times have you had a lobster either steamed ,baked or broiled that just was terrible??And cost an arm and a leg??
            I STILL have not had a good clam chowder any where in NYC and I don't even bother to buy lobster rolls any more because they all are over loaded with filler and to make them at home and have a great one is way more satisfying.
            To operate a place like this and have great food EVERYTHING has to be made fresh every day, with fresh ingredients and if most of the consumers knew what went on behind the scenes in most of the fish places in NYC they would NEVER go out and eat fish or seafood.

            2 Replies
            1. re: jonnyk

              Well if you want really good fish just go to any place in Chinatown that has a tank and pick it yourself.Or spend big bucks at Le Bernadian

              1. re: chameleonz

                I go to this wholesale place outside of Chinatown. For just under $20, I can pick out an alive and kicking 2-lb lobster, steam it, and have some leftover to make a lobster roll. It's called the Lobster Farm.

                http://www.howtoeatlikeabird.com/how_...

            2. I passed by this place on Sunday night and was intrigued. Thanks for saving me from a bad experience, hounds!

              1. I just had it delivered at work for lunch. Awful. Took more than an hour to get here, which is par for the course, I suppose, but then the lobster roll bordered on inedible. In addition to being $19 before tax, it was tiny (which would have been fine if I were at a stand in the cape I suppose) and it was possibly the fishiest (and chewiest) lobster I've ever tasted. If I hadn't been starving, I would have thrown it into the trash, where its flavor would at least match its surroundings.

                Pity I didn't check chowhound before ordering it.

                1. i order from them on seamless for a quick din-din from time to time (never been in) - but after my recent experience - i will avoid.

                  01) rude phone service
                  02) $.50 EXTRA for butter for a baked potato??? not extra butter... just butter.
                  03) will only send utensils to a business???
                  04) i HATE it when people call you "my friend" when they are being rude to you.

                  - the lobster roll is fair to poor, shrimp roll is better, but the tuna roll is pretty damn good... weird because the the cheaper it gets, the better it is!?!?
                  - broccoli w/garlic: tastes micro-waved, not fresh, and has a dollop of what tastes like pre-cut jarred garlic