A few weeks ago, I told David I was in the mood for lobster and he told me to go find another boyfriend. (Oh no he didn’t!) So I took matters into my own hands and went to Luke’s Lobster myself. Much faster than getting a new boyfriend.
I love lobster rolls, but they’re pricey stuff, usually around $27 in this town. At Luke’s Lobster, lobster rolls are $14, practically half the going rate. The price is a reflection of the owner’s connections. Luke Holden grew up in Maine, and his dad, Jeff Holden, owns Portland Shellfish, a seafood processing company. As a result, their relationship with local lobstermen enables them to ship the lobster directly from the docks of Maine to the East Village.
At Luke’s I ordered a small Lobster Roll ($8) since I wanted to try one of the other seafood rolls. The small is referred to as snack size, and it’s exactly that. When I first saw it, I thought it was a joke, but the tiny roll — toasted and buttery — was chock full of fresh knuckle and claw meat with only the tiniest bit of mayonnaise and a sprinkle of celery salt. It’s all meat, no filler; the exact polar opposite of the luscious mayoriffic lobster rolls from Pearl Oyster Bar. It was surprisingly satisfying, but next time I’ll probably ask for a little more mayo and lemon. The great thing about Luke’s Lobster is that you can always add more mayo if you want it. Taking out mayo is problematic.
The Crab Roll ($5/small) was just as fresh and delicious, with chunks of sweet crab. Again, the small order was tiny, but it was a whole lot of crab. Well worth it, even if your boyfriend didn’t take you.