Growing up very southern, I became thoroughly familiar with what is known as “Old Wives Tales”. One of my mom’s personal favorites was don’t mix ice cream and seafood, it will make you sick. Maybe Mom just wanted to keep me out of the ice cream, or make sure I didn’t have a sugar rush before bedtime, or maybe she honestly believed it, I’ll never know, but I gotta say, all these years and I could have been eating two of my favorite foods together.
Last night’s adventure is something that is a must for all New Yorkers. I went to my absolute favorite place to get a lobster roll, Luke’s Lobster, and followed it with my latest addiction, 16 Handles. I have had lobster rolls at upscale restaurants, seafood joints, and even a booth at the US Open, however, Luke’s is the best I’ve ever had. I think the key to their success is definitely “less is more”. Not less lobster meat by any means, I mean less ingredients and flavoring. They trust the natural flavor of the Maine lobster they use, and don’t try to disguise it, they merely enhance it. Last night I had “the taste of Maine”, which is 1/2 a lobster roll, 1/2 a crab roll, and 1/2 a shrimp roll. They’re served on a toasted roll, with the lightest swipe of mayo (which you can barely taste!), and brushed with a seasoned garlic butter. Along with my meal, I had a cup of lobster bisque, which is also a must there. Unlike most places’ version of lobster bisque, Luke’s has a large amount of big chunks of lobster meat in the soup. It could actually be a meal in itself. The price is also very reasonable, if you go to the Grand Central Oyster Bar, you’ll spend $28 for a lobster roll and chips. At Luke’s the combo I had is $22, and that includes a drink and chips, for only a couple dollars more you can upgrade it and get a beer. If you only want one kind of roll and you make it a combo, you can easily come out of Luke’s for less than $20.
After Luke’s was a stop across the street, at 16 Handles for some fro yo. Half the fun of Handles is mixing and matching flavors and making your own ice cream Sunday. There are, as the name suggests, sixteen flavors to choose from, and a countless number of toppings to make your own unique creation. It was overall, a simple evening, but proof that in New York City, you don’t have to go to a fancy, upscale restaurant, (although I do love the excuse to go to one!), to have amazing food!