This summer, I combed the Hamptons to find the most mouthwatering lobster rolls that everyone must try before Labor Day. I tasted, I rated, and now after trying over two dozen lobster rolls this season from various restaurants and catering companies, I have carefully narrowed it down to seven. Below are my personal favorite signature seaside rolls stuffed with lobster meat from Sag Harbor to Montauk. Honorable mentions will also be noted.
In order of when I first enjoyed them this summer:
The Dock House, Sag Harbor
Located on the Long Wharf in Sag Harbor, The Dock House has been a best-kept secret of Sag Harbor for many years. Their lobster roll is ideal for taking out on to your yacht paired with an unbeatable marina sunset. This is where I send my friends and family who are staying from out of town if they are hankering for that perfect, afternoon roll. The celery is fresh and crunchy and the lobster meat tastes as if it jumped out of the sea and onto your roll.
The Clam Bar, Amagansett
Every time I drive down the Napeague stretch, I always crave one of their lobster rolls paired with their must-have sweet potato fries and a Montauk Summer Ale. The roll is a soft, gently toasted potato roll that is overloaded with fresh lobster meat. I usually enjoy mine at their counter top or take them to go to enjoy on the beach in East Hampton. It is well worth the drive back and forth. This roll is created with a light amount of mayo and celery to add a bit of a crunch.
Bostwick’s Chowder House, East Hampton
When I brought a group of my friends here last summer, we all decided to order their famous lobster roll: filled with chunks of lobster and uniquely garnished with minced cilantro. The staff is very friendly and the service is prompt and efficient. It is no surprise that this roll is their most requested dish next two their raw oysters on the half shell. The bun is toasted, with chunks of mainly lobster claw.
Tillie’s at Gurney’s Resort & Spa, Montauk
A little twist to a classic: a spicy, hot rendition of their cold lobster roll. A no nonsense roll with an overflowing amount of lobster meat and a chive garnish. Served with house potato chips, I instantly needed a fork to “catch” the lobster meat that escaped the roll. What you see in the photo above is approximately two thirds of the amount of meat served to me! I needed a ‘partner in crime’ to help me finish the roll, but how much more perfect can it get to enjoy one of the best lobster rolls out east at an oceanfront resort? Can’t beat it!
During my visit to Ruschmeyer’s a mere couple of days ago, I tried their famous lobster roll for the first time served with the most outrageously good lightly sweetened sweet potato and blue potato chips. The bun in and of itself was a masterpiece: lightly buttered and warm with the most generous pieces of lobster meat (claw and tail) I have ever experienced. Served with a lemon pit with no pesky seeds (rock on!), this calls for a special crustacean salute! This roll is well worth the praise as Chef Savannah Jordan gets it spot on.
Lobster Roll, Amagansett
Of course, a visit to the East End would be complete without making a stop at renowned Lunch Lobster Roll restaurant on the Napeague Stretch. This family-friendly eatery churns out hundreds of lobster rolls on a daily basis that served with their creamy cole slaw. Though I will say that I did like the lobster roll a little more in the previous years, it is still one of my favorites. The secret to their lobster roll was revealed to me, and though I cannot divulge here, I completely understood why this roll is so special. The harmony of lobster and ideal size pieces of cole slaw is a feast for the eyes. My go-to order is their lobster slider and clam chowder combo.
Bay Burger, Sag Harbor
I had at least a half dozen people ask me if I had been to Bay Burger to try their (reasonably priced) lobster roll. I had not, though I had been to the restaurant several times in the past for their delicious ice cream. The dense amount of lobster meat qualifies this roll for a gold medal. Served on a New England style bun lightly toasted with lobster meat from the tail and claw with seasoning.
Which lobster rolls are your favorite? Honorable mentions that I have heard positive points about include Silver’s in Southampton and The Seafood Shop in Wainscott.