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How to Eat Lobster Like a Pro

a person eating a lobster

Whether it’s for a fancy feast, celebration, or just a tasty dinner out to eat, lobster is always a great choice! Although it may be thought of as a luxury food, let’s face it... Eating a lobster can get a little messy! But that’s half the fun, right? When it comes to eating lobster, you can’t be afraid to roll up your sleeves and dig in. If you don’t know exactly what you’re doing, it can be a little intimidating to be served a whole lobster. We’ve put together some tips and tricks from the pros that’ll help you navigate through cracking open and enjoying every bit of your lobster! 

Embrace the Mess

First and foremost, the most important tip we can give is to simply embrace the messiness! Don’t feel self-conscious about making a scene or getting “too messy”- There’s no such thing. After all, that’s why most restaurants will serve a bib with your meal! It’s not only acceptable but encouraged to dig in with your hands and get a little dirty! 

Start with the Tail

When served a whole lobster, you’ll want to start with the tail. Grab the body in one hand and tail in the other, and twist in opposite directions, almost like you’re ringing out a towel. This will separate the tail. Next, you’ll want to crush the sides of the tail with your hands, which will expose the 5 fins at the bottom. Pop-out the middle one, and a tasty portion of meat will be ready to eat! Be sure to also take out the vein running along the middle of it. 

Carefully Crack the Claws

As you make your way to the claws, you’ll want to use a lobster cracker to break the shell. Don’t attempt to use your mouth, as you’ll be more likely to crack a tooth than the claw. Use the lobster cracker gently, so you don’t damage the meat. Once you’ve pierced the shell, you’ll be able to reach in with your fingers to grab the meat. 

Don’t Forget the Knuckle

Since the knuckle of the claw only has a little meat in it, it’s often neglected. But as a pro, you’ll want to get to this yummy piece of meat. The shell is a bit softer at this joint, so it’ll be slightly more difficult to crack. Once you’ve created a sufficient enough gap, you can use a fork to dig the meat out. 

Tackling the Legs

The legs can be tricky, and there are a few different ways you can get to the tender pieces of meat inside. One method is to pull them off the body, and set them on the table in front of you with the point that was once connected to the body closest to you. Then, roll a Tabasco bottle or similar item over them, squeezing the meat out. If you don’t have something like this available, you can also use your teeth to carefully get the meat out.

Final Tips

Now that you’ve got the technique down to get the most out of your lobster, we have a final few tips that’ll really make you an expert in lobster-eating. First, if you’re given the option in gender, choose a female; The meat tends to be larger! If you do get a female, be mindful of the eggs in the tail section. They should be red or orange. If they’re black, the lobster likely is not done cooking. As you eat the lobster, you’ll also want to keep an eye out for green bits of meat, known as the tomalley. This is the liver and pancreas, and it offers a rich, pungent flavor.  Lastly, and perhaps most importantly… Load up on the butter! The meat is buttery as it is, but dunking each piece of meat in a sie of butter makes it that much more enjoyable. 

Delicious Lobster Dishes at Summer Shack

If your mouth is watering now, don’t worry, we have plenty of lobster to go around at Summer Shack to put your skills to the test! If eating a whole lobster is still overwhelming for you, try Chef Jasper White’s famous lobster roll! We guarantee you’ll love it. Book a reservation today at our Cambridge, Boston, or Mohegan Sun location or order takeout