My one requirement for the whole trip to Maine was fairly simple: I wanted to have a lobster roll. It didn't have to be fancy, in fact, it would be better if it wasn't. It didn't even have to be on the coast, though that would add a few bonus points to the experience.
The nautically themed interior.
Then I heard about The Lobster Shack, and I knew it would fit the bill perfectly. First, it was just a few miles south of Portland in the village of Cape Elizabeth. Second, it was situated overlooking the ocean and offered the simplicity of ordering at the counter, then choosing either outdoor or indoor seating, a big plus on a spring day in Maine. And third, it had been rated as one of the best spots in the area to get a roll.
So we jumped into the rental car and drove down in the late afternoon, winding through Cape Elizabeth and out past Two Lights State Park to a spit of land with, you guessed it, two lighthouses. The little house was teetering atop a slate outcropping overlooking Casco Bay and the Atlantic, looking like it could tumble into the waves at any moment, though I consoled myself with the knowledge that it had stood there in sturm und drang since the 1920s.
Clam strips and cocktail sauce.
We ordered a lobster roll each, and Dave got an additional basket of clam strips. After waiting a few minutes for a table, our number was called and my roll landed in front of me in all its simple beauty. A fair amount of lobster meat (maybe a half lobster?) was tucked neatly into a split roll of white bread, a small dollop of mayonnaise at one end and a slice of bread and butter pickle at the other, the whole thing sprinkled with paprika, one assumes to give it some color.
One of the Two Lights.
Remove the pickle for consumption later, spread the mayo around and…voilá…lobster roll in all its moist, meaty simplicity. I was one happy camper, let me tell you. Less mayonnaise-laden than the one I'd had in Vermont (though it was good, too), I preferred this simpler version.
The clam strips were equally simple and delicious, breaded and quickly deep fried to tender perfection. A dunk in the very good tartar sauce (or cocktail sauce, depending on your preference) and satisfaction reigned.
Details: The Lobster Shack at Two Lights, 225 Two Lights Rd., Cape Elizabeth, ME. Phone 207-799-1677.
Check out the other installments in the series: The (Other) Portland, Dinner and a Show, Breakfast and Lunch, Loosening Up, Puttering Around the Old Port and Fore Star.