As summer approaches, bringing with it hordes of tourists and family members visiting their Maine relatives, inevitably the question will be asked: “Where can we get lobster around here?”
The answers are too numerous to mention — this is Maine, after all — but in the Bangor area, we can safely narrow it down a few specific choices that offer a wide array of dishes featuring everybody’s favorite crustacean.
While there are a lot of places that have one or two Maine lobster items on the menu, for this article, we’ve chosen to focus on places that either serve the full lobster experience — steamed whole lobster with sides — or that specialize in Maine seafood.
McLaughlin’s at the Marina
100 Marina Road, Hampden
McLaughlin Seafood and Takeout
728 Main St., Bangor
McLaughlin’s has for a long time been name one when it comes to seafood in Bangor. For nearly 40 years, McLaughlin’s snack shack and market on Main Street in Bangor, near the Hampden town line, has offered up sweet lobster rolls, whole steamed lobsters, lobster stew and lobster quesadillas from the takeout window, as well as live lobster and other fresh seafood.
In 2011, the McLaughlin family opened a full-service restaurant, McLaughlin’s at the Marina, located at Hamlin’s Marina on the Penobscot River in Hampden. There, they offer a full array of seafood dishes, including the aforementioned lobsters rolls, stew and quesadilla, whole lobsters, lobster BLTs, lobster Newburg and lobster mac and cheese. There’s a full bar, too, with fancy cocktails including a lobster Bloody Mary.
Dorr Lobster Company
579 Broadway, Bangor
The Dorr family has for decades fished for lobster in the Gulf of Maine, but more recently has gotten into the retail world, opening a market in Ellsworth in 2013, and another market on Broadway in Bangor in 2016. In addition to a full array of fresh, frozen and smoked seafood, you can get cooked lobsters and lobster rolls to go.
Pro tip: You can get lobster bodies here for a quarter a piece. Bring them home, throw them in a stockpot with some water, carrots, celery, onions and whatever other tasty aromatics you’d like, boil away, and voila: lobster stock, to use straight away or freeze for future use.
The Lobstah Buoy
268 Odlin Road, Bangor
Season two for this Bangor-based food truck finds them in the parking lot of Hollywood Cinemas on Odlin Road — but that’s the only change. The truck serves up three sizes of fresh-shucked lobster rolls (hot dog bun-sized, quarter pound-sized, or half pound-sized), lobster stew, and a lobster grilled cheese. Fresh fried seafood and French fries, too. Open 11 a.m.-6 p.m., Tuesday-Sunday.
The Eagle’s Nest Restaurant
1016 North Main St., Brewer
This cozy family eatery does all sorts of classic diner menu items, but its seafood is a local legend — especially its epically large lobster roll. At $20, it’s also a steal.
The Eagle’s Nest does loads of other fried seafood as well. It’s also a pretty nice place to sit by the window and watch the Penobscot River (and the creatures that live on and in it) roll by.
91 Coldbrook Road, Hampden
For the classic, old-fashioned Maine seafood joint experience, look no further than Angler’s.
There’s fried everything, and there’s plenty of lobster, including the full lobster dinner experience with drawn butter and plenty of sides. Lobster rolls, lobster alfredo, lobster stew, lobster salad and baked stuffed lobster round out the menu.
427 Main St., Bangor
Seasons on Main Street in Bangor serves up steamed lobster with whipped potatoes and veggies; they also do a classic lobster roll. Seasons has its own lobster fisherman out of Deer Isle that supplies the restaurant with fresh crustaceans regularly.
Sea Dog Brewing Company
26 Front St., Bangor
The Sea Dog also does lobster — in fact, you can not only get a steamed lobster with fries and coleslaw, you can get a full-on feast that includes the aforementioned plus a cup of chowder, Maine mussels and a pint of beer or homemade soda. The Dog does lobster rolls, lobster BLTs and bisque, too. Sit on the deck and enjoy yourself.
High Tide Restaurant & Bar
5 South Main St. Brewer
Here too, you can get a classic lobster dinner — and baked stuffed lobster and lobster thermidor. Oh, and lobster rolls, lobster alfredo and lobster mac and cheese, too. Yet another place to sit and enjoy the Penobscot River, on High Tide’s expansive outdoor patio.
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