June 23, 2012

Luke's Lobster

Location: 624 E St NW (Gallery Place Metro)
Cost: $20
Luke's Lobster on Urbanspoon

When I first told my friends I was going to DC for residency, the first thing they told me was to get used to the traffic, politics, and Old Bay.  So far, I've got 2 down, and one to go.  And wouldn't ya know it, with seafood on the brain, I began to yearn for the lobsters I had the last time I drove up to Maine.  Luckily enough, I was able to find a place to get my lobster roll fix at Luke's Lobster down in Penn Quarter.  My uncle decided to come along to try this place out too, so I had an extra set of food to try as well. =)

Originally a New York creation, Luke's Lobster has migrated down to DC along with a number of other NYC standbys like Shake Shack.  Normally, I'm not a fan of New York pretension and costliness, but Luke's seems different.  They source all their lobster straight from Maine, and the cozy (read: tiny) little storefront feel when you walk inside makes you feel like you're closer to the Maine docks where the lobster boats moor.

The main menu is 3 items long, and they're all rolls.  You can have your choice of chilled shrimp, crab, or lobster, and each is served atop a toasted New England bun (looks like a slice of bread folded in half) with some light mayo, lemon butter, and Luke's "secret spices."

Of course, my fix would only be satisfied with a lobster roll, so that's what I ordered.  It comes with a quarter pound of lobster meat, so you do get what you pay for, but be appropriately forewarned if you were thinking of rolling in and getting a $5 lobster roll.  If that's you, opt for the bacteria-laden sushi at the gas-n-go instead.

I'm not a fan of mayo, so I asked for none and extra butter instead.  Definitely give that a try if you're not too high on mayo, because it makes the lobster taste awesome.  Serving it chilled is something I'm not a big fan of either, but it's authentic, I guess.  The lobster meat is truly juicy, succulent, and with the spices & butter, incredibly delicious with that hint of the sea when you bite into it.  The buttered roll is perfectly toasted so that it provides a nice little crunch to go along with the seafood.

My uncle ordered the crab roll, which was also pretty incredible if you're into crab.  I personally like lobster better because it doesn't break up into stringy pieces, but this roll was mouth-watering, crisply fresh, and well-seasoned as well.  Mayo works a little better here than it does with the lobster roll.

For satisfying my craving for authentic Maine lobster, but for making my wallet cry a little, Luke's Lobster earns 3.5 Cherries.


  1. Awesome that you can get this without the drive to Maine! Can't wait to visit and try for myself =)