HOME > Chowhound > San Francisco Bay Area >

Discussion

Lobster Roll

Don't know why but lim craving a lobster roll. I'm looking for help from my fellow Bay Area foodies.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
Posting Guidelines | FAQs | Feedback
Cancel
  1. With the usual disclaimer that lobster is not local here, you can try, New England Lobster in Burlingame.

    http://newenglandlobster.net/

    Or Woodhouse in the city:

    http://www.woodhousefish.com/

    Or if you want a view of the Pacific while you eat your Maine lobster, there is Sam's
    http://www.samschowderhouse.com/

    1. Try to re-direct your craving to a shellfish that swims in more proximate waters.

      I know that's not what you want to hear. There should be a support group, helping homesick lobster lovers who have wound up, through no fault of their own, on the West Coast.

      To have a craving, you have to have the taste of a fabulous New England lobster roll in mind. The painful truth is that you're going to be let down by any of the local venues that even the most discerning Bay Area Chow poster will be able to recommend.

      2 Replies
      1. re: sundeck sue

        I agree concerning the let down. I've never even had a lobster roll in its native habitat, and I've been disappointed by the ones I've had at Sam's, Old Port Lobster, and New England Lobster. They just are too expensive and not very interesting. I'm assuming if you get one in the East, they are much better...

        1. re: sundeck sue

          sad, but true. the one and only time my craving was satisfied was when a friend traveled to visit family in Maine and came home to SF with fresh live lobsters - tasting as delicious as I remembered; otherwise, local venues have been a let down - as posted

        2. Fish in Sausalito makes what at times has been a very good Dungeness crab roll. $25 including tax (and, for some, tip) and comes w fries, salad, or cole slaw.

          1. I would just get a couple Lobster tails and some good quality rolls from Acme and make the super simple dressing myself.

            Lots of recipes online.

            Plus the crappy hotdog buns they serve them on back East for a $10-20 sandwich is a joke.

            8 Replies
            1. re: Mission

              Having spent my first 40 years in the Boston area, it is clear that non-native New Englanders have rarely had the "real deal".

              The "crappy hot dog buns" are a major part of the allure. The toast nicely on both sides, and combined with the sweet lobster meat, dressing and perhaps some celery, provide a nice variety of tastes/textures in each bite.

              When I have a craving for one, I simply go to an Asian market, find a tank full of live "New England" lobsters, steam them up, chill and then make my lobster roll to taste.

              The major problem is finding substitutes for the "crappy hot dog rolls". For a while in the 80s there was a Howard Johnson's between Vallejo and Vacaville, and I could usually get them to sell me a whole package of them.

              1. re: Alan C

                At least some Safeways have carried those split top buns; call around to check. I know I once found them at the Safeway on Market St in SF.

                1. re: walker

                  Typical ingredients of a ACME roll:

                  Unbleached Organic Wheat Flour, Water, Sea Salt, Yeast, and Malted Barley Flour.

                  Typical ingredients of a commercial split top roll:

                  Ingredients
                  ENRICHED BLEACHED FLOUR [WHEAT FLOUR, MALTED BARLEY FLOUR, NIACIN, IRON, THIAMIN MONONITRATE (VITAMIN B1), RIBOFLAVIN (VITAMIN B2), FOLIC ACID], WATER, HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP, YEAST. CONTAINS 2% OR LESS OF EACH OF THE FOLLOWING: SOYBEAN OIL, SALT, WHEAT GLUTEN, CALCIUM SULFATE, DISTILLED VINEGAR, DOUGH CONDITIONERS (MAY CONTAIN ONE OR MORE OF THE FOLLOWING: MONO- AND DIGLYCERIDES, ETHOXYLATED MONO- AND DIGLYCERIDES, SODIUM STEAROYL LACTYLATE, CALCIUM PEROXIDE, DATEM, ASCORBIC ACID, AZODICARBONAMIDE, ENZYMES, L-CYSTEINE), GUAR GUM, CALCIUM PROPIONATE (PRESERVATIVE), YELLOW CORN FLOUR, YEAST NUTRIENTS (MONOCALCIUM PHOSPHATE, CALCIUM SULFATE, AMMONIUM SULFATE AND/OR CALCIUM CARBONATE), CORN STARCH, NATURAL FLAVOR, PAPRIKA EXTRACT (COLOR), SOY LECITHIN, MILK, SOY FLOUR, SESAME SEEDS. ALLERGEN STATEMENT: CONTAINS WHEAT, SOY AND MILK

                2. re: Alan C

                  Any recent recommendations on the right hot dog bun? Will the really cheap buns you see on sale during July 4th work? The Wonder bread-like buns. Or are they a little more substantial than that?

                  On a conceptual level, is the idea of the hot dog bun for a lobster roll "not" to compete with the lobster's flavor/ delicate texture?

                  1. re: ML8000

                    Seems like in my imagination they don't have sides and are buttery and crisp.

                    1. re: RnMicki

                      I get buttery and crisp but what are "sides"? Side dishes, extra filling/condiments? Side (edges) of bread?

                      1. re: ML8000

                        I think RM means no side crust,
                        http://www.bucknrunranch.com/wp-conte...

                  2. re: Alan C

                    Hi Alan, you can buy the New England style rolls from We’re on a Roll mobile trailer operated by New England Lobster Company. NELC has opened a sit down place as well since the time of this report,
                    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8626...

                3. I watched a Check Please episode showing one at Nettiie's Crab Shack. Has anyone tried it?

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: RnMicki

                    I haven't, but I was at Nettie's Thursday night. It's a very pretty restaurant with skylights and all that...but nothing too fancy. Just very cute and adorable. All the appetizers I had there were excellent.

                  2. Lobster Shack might be worth a shot: I've only been to the Redwood City location (otherwise, Portola Valley) but the lobster I had was quite fresh, though I (embarrassingly, due to a wheat allergy) opted for a Lobster Louie salad over a roll. Everyone I was with had a roll and no one seemed disappointed, including east coasters.

                    1. Good lobster rolls 2 out of 3 times @ Prime Dip on Fillmore a little below Geary. Third time the meat was more fishy than sweet. And, it wasn't mainly tasteless little claw meat like some places serve. Side of plain old-fashioned mayo slaw. Pleasantly surprised.