HOME > Chowhound > All New England Archive >


Lobster in Maine from a Manhattan p.o.v. [moved from Manhattan board]

  • f

I'm hoping to spend a week up somewhere in Maine, eating lobster. Although I'll ask the New England people too, from a Manhattan point of view, what are any opinions of lobster so great that it would make sense to stay in that particular town?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Their not that cheap in Maine. I just got back. Chauncey Creek Lobster pound in Kittery and the Lobster Shack in Oquinquit are 2 of my favorites

    1 Reply
    1. re: stevel

      Before heading to Chauncey Creek, I would read this thread first:


    2. Mabel's Lobster Claw in Kennebunkport is great. My family lives there now and we go anytime I go up to visit. The seafood bake is not to be missed! Not to mention that it's just a gorgeous little town. Only 45 minutes south of Portland airport as well.

      1. if you're near bar harbor/ellsworth, there is a place call ruth and wimpie's between ellsworth and bar harbor that has very fresh, reasonably priced lobster pound style seafood. a lobster with corn and potatoes around $14.

        1 Reply
        1. re: cbass

          Yessah, ol' Ruth & Wimpies is a wicked good deal, but if it's the view ya want, just down the road a pace is the Tidal Falls Lobster Pound, best lobstah and view since 5 islands and not so touristy either, Mable.

        2. In Boothbay Harbor at the wharf, you can sit on the dock, watch the lobstermen bring in their catch, pick your fresh lobster from their tank, and then wait 20 minutes for it to cook. There are also several good restaurants in town that serve lobster, and the terrific ice cream factory for an after dinner treat.
          It's also not much of a drive to Red's Eats....famous for the freshest lobster roll in the state (do a google).

          8 Replies
          1. re: jackattack

            Red's has the rep, but not the best lobster roll. After some severe sampling this summer I think that Sarah's Cafe across the street from Red's blows Red's away. It's bigger, cheaper, and has better roll, obviously homemade and toasted all crispy outside and inside, and every order is made fresh, sometimes you have to wait a bit for more lobsters to cook up.

            1. re: JMF

              Well, we all know how subjective the term "best" is. I've heard several chowhounders complain about the over-mayo'd Sarah's lobster roll, and real connosieurs think that a grilled Nissen hotdog bun is the only kind of bread that a lobster roll should be served in. To each his own! When you've been number one for as long as Red's has been, there's no where to go but down. Reds set a new standard for the lobster roll as far as I'm concerned, and Red's deserves its reputation. If others come up with a better roll, more power to them, but let's remember that the Red's Lobster Roll set up the challenge. . The hamburgers are also exceptional.

              1. re: jackattack

                RED'S EVERYTIME!!! a maine lobster roll should probably not have mayo- sorry... sara's is fine for thick crust pizza, their "mattie" (sort of like calzones with more breading and less cheese and no sauce) can be fine, soups and salads ok, but the lobster roll is so meh compared to the unstoppable Red's. even sea basket has a better lobster roll than sara's, mayo, strange bun, and all... and the nissen roll is SO right at red's- red's cooks the lobster meat so perfectly, so fresh, cold, crisp, briney, perfect, barely needs the drawn butter. i could easily eat 2 red's lobster rolls right now...

                1. re: frankbooth

                  "a Maine lobster roll should probably not have mayo- sorry"

                  Where does that pronouncement rest on any basis of reality?
                  A traditional Maine lobster roll always came with mayo, and far and away, most still do. The only points for argument on that basic fact is how much mayo and whether you can live with a minimum amount of lettuce (I can but rather not) and whether diced celery has any place in a roll.(it doesn't on mine) Any other pronouncements regards the innards is purely "away" revisionism,


                  1. re: Harp00n

                    Poonstah! If yah a real Maineah, you don't want that yuppie mayo w/ ya lobstah roll, for the real downeast flavah, Miracle Whip is the real deal.
                    About to head out to Ruth and Whimpies for a meat loaf sandwhich with mashed potatoes with a side of canned corn and bread pudding for dessert. Wicked good!


                    1. re: TonyO

                      As hargua stated, Piccadilly's a chain, as you know. But they do a surprisingly good job on seafood and the setting overlooking the lake is nice. Kennedy's does well with seafood but no fried clams except on specials. Halfway doesn't offer fried clams either but does a great job on steamers in beer & garlic. The Riverview Restaurant & Bar is in the brand new Hudson Portuguese Club complex. The menu, including the seafood but not fried clams, looks terrific but I haven't been there as of yet. Beat me there! http://www.riverviewhpc.com/restauran...

                      All the others places offer fullbelly clams and all do a good job with them.


                      The Riverview Restaurant & Bar
                      13 Port St, Hudson, MA 01749

                      Hudson Dairy Joy
                      418 Main St, Hudson, MA 01749

                      Piccadilly Pub Restaurant
                      587 Bolton St, Marlborough, MA 01752

                      Coral Seafood Restaurant
                      29 S Bolton St, Marlborough, MA 01752

                      Harry's Restaurant
                      149 Turnpike Rd, Westborough, MA 01581

                      Halfway Cafe
                      820 Boston Post Rd E, Marlborough, MA 01752

                      Riley's Roast Beef
                      911 Edgell Rd, Framingham, MA 01701

                      Sole Proprietor
                      118 Highland St., Worcester, MA 01609

                      Kennedy's Pub
                      247A Maple St, Marlborough, MA 01752

                      1. re: Harp00n

                        Harpie, a sad, but true fact; locals do like Miracle Whip on their LRs. At the local "dairy bar", Jordan's, they make LRs with Miracle Whip. I won't eat them, but the locals give rave reviews! Now the fried clams are another matter.
                        The Thirsty Whale, as local a place as one can have in BH, has a good deal. A cup of clam chowder with a LR for 12 bucks. Followed by a Bar Harbor Summer Ale spells summer time.
                        We have a friend visiting from Norway and we are feasting on Lobster. He even insists on getting some lobster rolls to go when we go kayaking. What can one do?
                        Ciao (Chow?),
                        Markie Bear

                        1. re: Passadumkeg

                          Just got back from Jordans. My guest and I had the fried clams, my wife and son had lobber roles and yup, Miracle Whippie! Yessahwickedgood.

            2. Barnicle Billy's in Ogunquit is my favorite place to eat a boiled lobster because you can sit out on the deck overlooking the water and have a great rum punch and steamers. Ogunquit has a great beach and many many places to stay and things to do. I must admit however that the best lobster I have had in a long time is at the Ogunquit lobster pound- no atmosphere whatsoever and no view and I really do not care for the place but you pick your own lobster and they cook it in sea water and it is very briny and excellent.

              1. As you can see from the debate, even the most popular places have some dissenters. I don't particularly care for Chauncy Creek which I think is expensive. Our idea of a Maine vacation is to find a town in the mid-coast area and then do your own research. We liked Searsport but last summer we stayed in Wiscasset and that location is great for heading north, south and east. Boothbay is the next town north. We were able to go to our favorite Waterman's Beach near Rockland but also explore the Harpswells (ate at Este's) and Five Islands. I think the real Maine experience is a lobster shack kind of place where you eat at picnic tables. Alternate lobster rolls and steamed lobster research. If you get sick of lobster, have some fried clams. We skipped Red's in favor of the Sea Basket. (family type of place) Probably our most unique experience was our first visit to Waterman's (nothing much there besides lobster and picnic tables and the ocean) when a local guy was taking his dad out to eat and complaining about the summer resident he worked for. Tim Sample couldn't have done a better job. Time of year may be critical. I prefer early summer when you can get rhubarb pie. But August and blueberry season is good, too. I think our favorite place for indoor eating and general menu was Just Barb's in Stockton Springs on our way to Ellsworth.
                We don't get lobster in fancy restaurants and find our rating of lobster rolls is prejudiced by a good order of fried onion rings. I'm also partial to the farmers market in Brunswick which I found exciting to visit (unusual breads, fresh shitake mushrooms, homemade biscuits for fresh strawberry shortcake and a great plant seller with a good selection of herbs).

                3 Replies
                1. re: dfrostnh

                  Yes, Five Islands is a true Maine experience. Really beautiful views, good lobster, crab, steamers, corn and potatoes and fish sabdwiches etc. [I always warn people to use restrooms on the main road before turning off to take the road to Five Islands as the portable things there will ruin your experience).

                  1. re: dfrostnh

                    OMG, thanks! You mentioned Tim Sample and I immediately started to chuckle and do an audio rewind of "Set 'er Agin" in my mind. He along with predecessors Bert & I (Marshall Dodge & Robert Bryan), captured the true Mainiacs perfectly. More on topic, I'm a bit surprised that you didn't mention Morse's of Harpswell in your excellent post.
                    Given your stated "in the rough" preferences, if you have been there you really must.


                    Morse Lobster
                    59 Morse Shore Rd, ME 04079

                    1. re: Harp00n

                      We missed Morse Lobster! Obviously, we need to go back to the Brunswick area. And maybe we should try Red's to see if it's really the best or not. Not quite up to Tim Sample's level, but NH's Rebecca Rule is doing pretty good in the local humor department. We found Waterman's just by accident, spotting a small wooden sign. Love to just wander the roads along Maine's coast.

                    1. Round Pond Lobster, Round Pond (in Bristol, on the Pemaquid Peninsula). It sells lobster and only lobster (with fixed sides). No dining room, just picnic tables on the wharf overlooking the harbor. When I went a couple of weeks ago, a one-pound lobster dinner (with an ear of corn, bag of chips and bag of steamers) was going for between $12 and $14 (soft vs. hard). Hangs over way-too-quaint Round Pond Harbor. One time, we ordered and the guy said it'll be a few minutes. He closed up the shack, went to the dock, got in his boat, went out to the car and grabbed another case of the bugs and came back in. Now that's fresh. Pemaquid Lobster shares the same drive, but it's a much bigger place.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Mainegal

                        mainegal is correct,,also, in the round pond area is one of my all time favorite places in maine pemaquid point .. you can drive right to a lighthouse,,looks right out over the ocean and you can picnic or walk on the rocks below,,beautiful spot!

                        1. re: mainebrokerman

                          We have a place walking distance from there. Whatever you do though, dont buy food at the lighthouse gift shop. I got a lobster roll there for a snack on my walk home and it was horrible, really bad!