Lobster ME, the ME is the postal code for Maine, is a nice place for Sunday brunch. The boys from LEV invited me and my fellow shnorrers to experience it, and we fairly jumped at the chance. The result could have been terrific, but for a few minor glitches.
I’ve eaten my way through most of the menu, from the pasty clam chowder designed for the majority of Americans who don’t know what real clam chowder is supposed to taste like, to their excellent lobster roll, a buttered, split hot dog bun generously stuffed with lobster meat mixed with mayo, celery and spice.
It’s not a sit-down restaurant, per se, but rather a kiosk with a back kitchen designed to deliver your food in three minutes. You order at a counter from their blackboard menu. Tables are on a makeshift patio, cordoned off by black ribbons.
One thing that makes the lobster roll soar is a delicious brioche bun sourced locally from a Vietnamese-owned bakery, Elysee. The meat is seasoned with celery salt and the claw meat is properly on top. I like the shrimp roll here as well, but Zach, one of the partners, told me the sandwich doesn’t sell well, and soon will disappear from the menu.
The iron kettles behind the cash register are stocked with clam chowder and lobster bisque, and the bisque is much improved, rich, thick, and served in a sourdough bread bowl. I can’t really criticize the ownership for serving that floury chowder. That’s what most people in this country know, outside of New England. But I won’t eat it.
This being brunch, someone brought me lobster and scrambled eggs, with a grilled English muffin. I sent it back. I hate scrambled eggs that aren’t the texture of brains, and grilling an English muffin is a no-no.
But I was appeased with a nice plate of fish, lobster and chips, even if the cooks here go a little heavy on the batter. They use cod, and it has a nice texture, if you scrape off some of the batter.
The best dish here is lobster grilled cheese, presented inside a foil bag. The sandwich uses sliced brioche from Elysee Bakery, and three cheeses, Gruyere, Brie and cream cheese, plus creamy lobster spread. It’s so good it should be illegal.
I wouldn’t bother with the lobster Bloody Mary. First of all, I loathe crushed ice-they should invest in a machine that makes cubes. Then, there is the matter of the tasteless frozen lobster at the bottom of the plastic tumbler. It’s just a gimmick, and a moronic one at that.
Diehards can order lobster ice cream for dessert, a confection made by Ben and Bill’s, of Bar Harbor. To me, it tastes like vanilla, but I did see chunks of frozen lobster meat in between bites. Hey boys, when a lobster is too cold, YOU CAN’T TASTE IT!. This isn’t rocket science.
I’d rather have one of their Baked in The Sun chocolate chip cookies, anyway. They are terrific. Being that this is Sunday brunch, there is a large coffee menu as well. Don’t ask for lobster in your cappuccino.
Lobster ME, Inside the Miracle Mile Shops. 785-5555.
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