Food Trends: Lobster Roll Season

From classic to creative, a clawfull of city seafood eatery takes on an Ocean State staple


The Pier-to-Plate Roll

Bringing a chef-driven and scratch-made approach to the classic seafood shack experience, Dune Brothers owners chef Nicholas and Monica Gillespie source straight from the boat. “We support the local fisheries by giving them a chance to sell lesser-known species, which are just as delicious as the more commonly known cod and haddock,” says Monica, listing rotating dishes like whole-roasted scup, pan-seared tautog, and many others.

Naturally, fans line up for their lobster roll, on a toasted brioche bun “piled high with fresh tail, claw, and knuckle meat,” says Monica. “We serve ours warm, tossed in a French-style butter sauce,” as opposed to drawn butter. “The addition of fat from the mayo and butter sauce, with the acidity of the lemon juice, really allows the lobster meat to shine.” Dune Brothers hosts live music on weekends with Aquidneck Island Oyster and Moniker craft brews. Come early summer, watch for updates on their new seafood market and year-round restaurant coming to Fox Point, along with wholesale seafood distribution plans in the works. 239 Dyer Street,


The Umami-Forward Roll

With chef Ryan Bessette at the helm, channeling the state’s fishing heritage into a menu of farm-to-table bounty, Rogue Island is a worthy stop on any lobster roll pilgrimage. In fact, theirs boasts accolades such as the 2022 Blue Plate Mayonnaise Best Side Dish at Hogs Fest in New Orleans. “It symbolizes our commitment to excellence in New England seafood,” Bessette explains, noting the traditional-style brioche hotdog bun and succulent lobster meat, including two claws. “A standout element is our unique tasso ham powder garnish, imparting a delightful umami burst with every bite.”

The dinner and brunch eatery isn’t afraid to “push culinary boundaries,” while prioritizing regional harvests. “From seafood to produce, all ingredients are sourced within a 50- to 60-mile radius, supporting local fisheries and farms,” says Bessette. They also collaborate with breweries for quarterly beer dinners with multi-course creative dinner pairings, and watch for themed brunches this summer. 65 Weybosset Street, Suite 108,


The Street Food-Inspired Roll

With their creative spins on lobster dishes and innovative cocktails, Capri Seafood charts a culinary voyage that docks on Southeast Asian shores, bringing street food culture to Federal Hill. Owners Sotheavong Meas and Nero Keo launch a new brunch menu this season, with lobster bao buns (a fresh take on the traditional roll), birria grilled cheese, and fluffy soufflé pancakes. Choose from refreshing fruit puree beverages or the decadent Seafood Bloody Mary – an appetizer in its own right with choice of accoutrements, from lobster tail to snow crab legs, completed with crisp celery, tangy pickles, and a little bit of spice.

When it comes to the lobster roll, Capri isn’t out to mess with a classic, letting the fresh meat, cooked to perfection, speak for itself. “We expertly season the lobster, serve it on a buttery toasted brioche roll, and garnish it with fresh herbs,” says Meas. “With options for customization and a commitment to consistency, every bite of our lobster roll promises a delightful dining experience.” 58 De Pasquale Avenue,



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