Cold or warm? Mayo or butter? When it comes to lobster rolls, there's one thing we can agree on: It all starts with great lobster. To find the most scrumptious rolls in L.A. restaurants, we checked out seafood restaurants and food trucks around town, splurging on these New England staples (cheap eats, these are not). Here are our top picks, as good as any lobster roll on that other coast.
The best lobster rolls in Los Angeles
Dreaming of buttery or mayo-drenched lobster rolls? These sammies around town will rival any New England version.
Where to find L.A.'s best lobster rolls
When paying more than $29 for a lobster roll at Connie & Ted's, you'll be happy to know that their version comes with a side of fries or coleslaw. But you're paying for quality, too, which this roll has in spades. Fresh, generous chunks of lobster meat come either hot and drenched in butter or cold with mayo (we're partial to the hot). Pair with an IPA and it makes for a perfect seaside meal—even in the middle of West Hollywood. $29
There are a couple of lobster trucks roaming the streets of L.A., but Cousins Maine Lobster is at the top of the fleet. The company, which got their start by winning over an investor on Shark Tank, has grown to include both food trucks and a West Hollywood restaurant, slinging lobster in various forms (tacos, tots, tails) but ultimately nailing two forms of lobster rolls: Connecticut and Maine. Both served on a New England-style roll, the Connecticut is warm and topped with butter, while the Maine is served chilled with a touch of mayo. Pair with Cape Cod chips and settle down for a true taste of New England. $15.50
The lobster roll at Hinoki & the Bird channels an American classic with creative and complementary Asian flavors. Generous pieces of fresh lobster are tossed in a creamy green curry aioli and topped with shallots, green onions and purple basil blossoms. The lobster meat is snuggled into a charcoal roll (more pumpernickel-like than detox-flavored) brushed with butter and dressed to impress—even a traditional New Englander. $22
Before you revel at a $11 lobster roll, know this: it's a tiny little thing, a three-bites-and-you're-done kind of deal. But those three bites pack a punch. Fresh lobster meat is mixed with celery and lemon aioli, piled on top of a buttery roll and garnished with a couple of chips for a nice crunch. Savor these few bites—it'll be gone before you know it. $11
It may make you roll your eyes at first: does a lobster roll really need black truffles? Yes. Yet it does. Generous flakes of black truffle add depth to this already fantastic roll, with huge portions of rich lobster meat held between a golden bun. It is the only dish listed under the "A Must" section on the menu, and for good reason: this lobster roll is 100 percent, without a doubt, a must. $20
Sawyer brings seafood into landlocked Silver Lake in the form of small plates, both cold and hot, to be enjoyed inside the quaint restaurant or on its dreamy outdoor patio. With executive chef Alex McWilliams at the helm, hungry eatsiders can dine on soft shell crab sandwiches, smoked trout and a fantastic lobster roll. Ask for it with hot beurre fondue or cold herbed mayo, both of which arrive with homemade salt and vinegar chips. $18
This Santa Monica institution, which has stood sentinel at the mouth of the pier since 1923 (and 1999 in its current form) features glass-siding to accentuate the views, along with a seafood focus. Chef Collin Crannell cooks up fresh seafood options for brunch, lunch and dinner, including a hefty lobster roll stuffed with fresh lobster meat, little gem lettuce and Japanese mayo, held together by a toasted butter roll. A side of pickled cucumbers and fries rounds out the meal. $28
Dive right into a delicious lobster roll inside Santa Monica's longtime seafood market and cafe. Holding center court is a 60-foot, horshoe-shaped seafood case that boasts every imaginable bivalve, crustacean and finned creature with a daily-changing board that lists fresh catches of the day like sturgeon fillets and spiny lobsters. Grab a seat at the tables and order up a hearty Maine lobster sammie, complete with lemon aioli, chopped chives and a butter toasted Rockenwagner Brioche roll. $22
Overlooking the Pacific Ocean, Nelson's restaurant at Terranea is the perfect spot to indulge in a lobster roll as glorious as the view. Though the price is steep ($25), you can expect a solid lobster-to-bun ratio topped with citrus aioli, along with a side of crispy golden fries. Wash it all down with a draft beer (or two) for a perfectly satisfying afternoon meal. $25
Find more mouthwatering seafood dishes in L.A.
Fish and chips seems simple enough: a couple of fish filets, battered, deep-fried and served with a healthy portion of chips (or fries, as we Yanks say). Yet there is more to this pub staple than meets the eye, and all too often, diners looking for cheap eats in L.A. settle on mediocre fish and chips. Once you've had the real deal, though, you'll never go back. Whether served in paper at a dive bar, prepared in a food truck or plated at one of L.A.'s best seafood restaurants, here are a few places around town that are doing fish and chips right.
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