If you ask the average guy to name a super-luxurious food, chances are he'll say "lobster". These sea bugs have a high culinary cachet in our culture, but I had never had one until this weekend. I was pretty excited to break the life-long streak of not eating lobster, but I tried to go into it with no expectations to give the sea bug a fair shake.
First, I was surprised how easily it came apart. The way people carry on about de-shelling the beast it seemed like I would need power tools and a cutting torch to get through the shell. Actually, it was very simple to cut the claws open with a pocketknife. The lobster came apart very simply, like an oversize crayfish.
Taste-wise, I thought it was OK. There was frankly not much taste to the flesh, other than a slight briny sweetness. A little lemon and butter helped to wake up the flavor a bit more. Texture–wise, I found that it was a bit chewy and stringy for my taste, at least compared to other seafood types. The fat chunk of tail meat was actually my least favorite because of the stringy texture, while the little lump of claw meat inside the "bicep" was the best.
As an aside, the poop chute in a lobster tail is truly colossal. I was not expecting to see that.
I enjoyed the meal but I feel lobster's exalted place in the American mind is more about scarcity and price than about the actual culinary value. On my seafood list lobster now comes way behind crayfish, shrimp, giant prawn, Dungeness crab and most kinds of fish. So to sum it up lobster ain't bad, but only if someone else is paying.
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