Editor’s Picks

The 9 Best Restaurants for National Lobster Day

As if you needed an excuse.

By Katharine Shilcutt May 31, 2015 Published in the June 2015 issue of Houstonia Magazine

The lobster tail at Jonathan’s the Rub

Somewhere in between Shark Week and Ford Truck Month comes a holiday dedicated to one of our favorite indulgences: National Lobster Day, June 15, which conveniently falls in the middle of National Seafood Month. And while Bon Appétit may argue that food holidays are “not real” and “insane,” we argue that when it comes to this particular crustacean, any excuse to eat one—even the most spurious—is fine.


While the wood-fired oysters get much of the acclaim at chef Hugo Ortega’s Galleria-area temple to modern Gulf seafood with a Mexican twist, his oven turns out equally exceptional scallops, whole fish and lobster, the last of which is served Puerto Nuevo–style with freshly made flour tortillas and beans. The whole roasted tail is pricey but big enough to split. 

La Fisheria

The thing to get here is chef Aquiles Chavez’s wonderful lobster risotto, whose jewel-toned beet rice perfectly complements the fiery-red tail atop it. This inventive Mexican seafood joint also turns out an excellent pizza topped with lobster, Gulf shrimp and Gouda.  

Fung’s Kitchen

As famous for its live lobster as for its massive square footage, chef Hoi Fung’s restaurant has long been a destination for serious seafood lovers. You can get the lobster—sold by the pound—in a variety of preparations, but our favorites are the spicy kung pao dry rub and the sticky-sweet honey-black pepper sauce. Feeling adventurous? They’ll also serve your lobster raw, sashimi-style.

Jonathan’s the Rub

At this popular Memorial Villages neighborhood hangout, chef Jonathan Levine puts lightly dressed claw and tail meat on sweet, buttery Hawaiian rolls and calls them lobster sliders—the natural progression of lobster rolls, made bite-sized and shareable (okay, well, sharing is up to you). If you’re having a tough time choosing between these and Levine’s lobster tacos with tomatillo salsa, order both. Dessert can wait until lobster season is over. 

Liberty Kitchen & Oyster Bar

If grilled lobster is what you’re after, dig into a majestic crustacean at this Heights favorite, with the head stuffed with crabmeat and the whole shebang basted in bourbon butter. Not decadent enough for you? Pair the dish with the bowl of lobster mac ‘n’ cheese topped with hunks of claw and knuckle meat. 

Lotus Seafood

This seafood spot in southwest Houston evolved from a you-buy-it-we-fry-it set-up to a cult favorite—the lines at lunch and dinner are typically out the door. True to its roots, there’s very little the place won’t fry, including whole lobster tails. Try them over the infamous Louisiana fried rice tossed with shrimp, crawfish and a creamy garlic butter that’s rightfully known as “crack sauce” among initiates. 

Maine-ly Sandwiches

It may seem like the lobster roll has always existed in Houston, but it was only in 2013 that Buddy Charity’s first location near IAH sparked the current craze. Today, Maine-ly Sandwiches still trafficks in those same expertly executed lobster rolls, wowing the uninitiated with the pure sensory bliss of an airy, buttery, toasted bun filled with juicy bites of lobster in the lightest of sauces—simplicity at its tastiest. 


Lobster pulled from the chilly waters off the coast of South Africa is said to be the finest in the world, and it can be found right here in Houston at this old-school spot, a shining beacon of service and hospitality. Enjoy your “Rolls Royce of lobster tails,” as the menu here modestly refers to it, with parmesan mashed potatoes, steamed broccoli and the refreshing knowledge that some restaurants still enforce a dress code.

The Union Kitchen

This local chain’s grilled cheese lobster sandwich is an almost indecently large lunch option. There’s lots of melty Brie and buttery slices of avocado tucked inside with the lobster, and it’s served with a silky tomato bisque that’s as rich as the sandwich itself.


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