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New England lobster rolls on the left coast

Nothing deflating about this regional specialty spot

Maine lobster roll with cole slaw and potato chips. Lobtser West.
Maine lobster roll with cole slaw and potato chips. Lobtser West.
Place

Lobster West

765 South Coast Highway 101, Encinitas

Not super northeast Atlantic state from the outside, but worth a look.

I pronounce the R in chowder. So I'm not going to pretend I'm dialed in with which New England shorelines offer the best lobster rolls. Maybe it's Massachusetts, maybe it's Martha's Vineyard. Lobster West, a laid back bit of specialty eatery in Encinitas, suggests its Maine or, in a pinch, Connecticut. I'm not here to argue.

I did have to think about it for a minute there. The Maine lobster roll keeps it simple: chunks of chilled lobster meat on a buttered roll with a little mayo and a sprinkling of spices. The Connecticut roll does the same thing, only with warmed meat. Each packs the lobster into vertically sliced rolls baked fresh by Sadie Rose, a wise decision from the get-go. Perhaps most importantly, the lobster's sustainably fished and shipped overnight. I was definitely hungry.

The warm, Connecticut style made a convincing argument, and further muddling my decision making process was the option for a lobster grilled cheese, made with Havarti and tomato slices. But it was a warm day, the sun was shining on the turquoise waters of Moonlight Beach, and the cold standard won me over. That, or the cute woman behind the counter who recommended I go with the Maine.

I took my number stand and scoped the small, nautical, casual dining room for a small table. Presently, my sandwich appeared — $12.95 for the roll, plus 3 extra for a side of slaw and potato chips. Salt and vinegar, by choice.

The large, hearty chunks of lobster were as fresh as I'd hoped. They had a little chew to them, gnashing well within the bread, with that light but distinct lobster flavor touched off a little lemon butter. I could have handled more mayo, but I'm glad there wasn't because I did get to enjoy some of the other things going on a little more. Likewise the house spice blend holds back just enough not to overpower the fish.

Foodies with their own specific favorite New England lobster rolls — even fans of the tasty rolls down at Ironside in Little Italy (of which there are many) — may deign to pass judgment. But I'm down with Lobster West's take, and I'd honestly rather be spending my day in Encinitas than along any rocky shoreline the original American colonies can furnish.

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Maine lobster roll with cole slaw and potato chips. Lobtser West.
Maine lobster roll with cole slaw and potato chips. Lobtser West.
Place

Lobster West

765 South Coast Highway 101, Encinitas

Not super northeast Atlantic state from the outside, but worth a look.

I pronounce the R in chowder. So I'm not going to pretend I'm dialed in with which New England shorelines offer the best lobster rolls. Maybe it's Massachusetts, maybe it's Martha's Vineyard. Lobster West, a laid back bit of specialty eatery in Encinitas, suggests its Maine or, in a pinch, Connecticut. I'm not here to argue.

I did have to think about it for a minute there. The Maine lobster roll keeps it simple: chunks of chilled lobster meat on a buttered roll with a little mayo and a sprinkling of spices. The Connecticut roll does the same thing, only with warmed meat. Each packs the lobster into vertically sliced rolls baked fresh by Sadie Rose, a wise decision from the get-go. Perhaps most importantly, the lobster's sustainably fished and shipped overnight. I was definitely hungry.

The warm, Connecticut style made a convincing argument, and further muddling my decision making process was the option for a lobster grilled cheese, made with Havarti and tomato slices. But it was a warm day, the sun was shining on the turquoise waters of Moonlight Beach, and the cold standard won me over. That, or the cute woman behind the counter who recommended I go with the Maine.

I took my number stand and scoped the small, nautical, casual dining room for a small table. Presently, my sandwich appeared — $12.95 for the roll, plus 3 extra for a side of slaw and potato chips. Salt and vinegar, by choice.

The large, hearty chunks of lobster were as fresh as I'd hoped. They had a little chew to them, gnashing well within the bread, with that light but distinct lobster flavor touched off a little lemon butter. I could have handled more mayo, but I'm glad there wasn't because I did get to enjoy some of the other things going on a little more. Likewise the house spice blend holds back just enough not to overpower the fish.

Foodies with their own specific favorite New England lobster rolls — even fans of the tasty rolls down at Ironside in Little Italy (of which there are many) — may deign to pass judgment. But I'm down with Lobster West's take, and I'd honestly rather be spending my day in Encinitas than along any rocky shoreline the original American colonies can furnish.

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Comments
1

You sir, have excellent taste. This is my fave lobster roll on the left coast. They put just that correct dab of mayo in it and I love the the lemony spice on the bread, so delish. Spend another $5 and get extra lobster meat on it...SO worth it! Barbarella of the Reader just reviewed this place a month or two ago and her husband says it's the best he's had too.

March 28, 2015

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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