Saturday, August 9, 2014

Still on a roll!

My luck with lobster was only going to get better.

Last weekend we went with good friends to Lucille's Oyster Dive.
Lucille's has to go straight onto my list of favorite restaurants.
It is the antithesis of the "Maître d'", jacket-and-tie, white table cloth, formal dining room experience. Well, maybe not the antithesis, they do have waiters, tables and chairs.

How to describe Lucille's?
The patrons were a 'with-it' bunch when we were there.  I hope we didn't detract overly from the vibe that Saturday night.  I think we're 'with-it', but our kids (who are definitely 'with-it') once famously told me that 'they' had changed what 'it' was, and now it was 'something else', other than the 'it' I was with.

Did I mention that the sound system was all blues tracks?  Yessir.  I love the blues.  Not just the blues, Jazz too, But the blues fit the mood of this place perfectly.

The restaurant has a bar, and the bar has oysters.
Then there's the scantily clad mermaid figurehead overseeing the goings on and staying abreast of the proceedings, as it were.
The most recent culinary offerings and libation options are scrawled on chalk boards.
The wait staff glide among the guests in the obligatory black, but rather than the usual spandex tube dresses, have opted for very fetching, shimmering silk, polka-dot, short, short, short skirts.
Sorry no pics of that attraction.  Come on now, this is a classy blog.  Use your imagination.

Now I will readily admit that the luscious scenery, though it sets the mood and matches the rhythm beautifully, does make it a tad more difficult for a guy to focus on the menu and make decisions.
Susan clearly wasn't distracted, and she casually snapped my mind back to attention with the usual 'have you decided what you're having?'

Oh, right...

The answer rolled off my tongue without a moment's hesitation.  "I'm having the Seafood Caesar".  Yes, yes, yes, I know that's not a suitable dinner choice, but it's definitely where I was going to start.  From there I was headed for the Surf-n-Turf.

I'll bet it's not what you're thinking.

Lucille's Surf-n-Turf is more of a Squeal-n-Roll.  Dry-rubbed babyback ribs, with sauce on the side, and a lobster roll.

That Caesar seemed to take forever to make its appearance.  I think it was the blues, the skirts, the steamy summer evening, and the slowly setting August sun that managed to stretch the wait in my mind.  When it finally arrived it immediately elicited oohs, and ahhs, from my fellow diners.

I was so carried away with it, that I forgot to take a picture until it was very nearly demolished, and its contents were happily adding to the intense pleasure I was basking in.  Let's just say that my Tommy Bahama silk Hawaiian shirt was the perfect uniform for my Caesar-induced, seafood-fueled, frame of mind.
I'll have to paint a picture with my words.  It came in a generous beer glass.  The edge was rimmed with fiery smokey embers, or so it seemed.  To fan the flames, there was a nice stalk of leafy celery, helping to maintain the vertical aspirations of a magnificent crab leg and claw.  A massive shrimp perched on the edge, and two Littleneck clams on the half shell nestled in the midst of the fantastic jungle, like surfers on hammocks at the end of a gnarly day at the beach.   The tumbler was full to the brim with the suitably kicky and clammy Caesar.

Now you can begin to understand why it only occurred to me to take the pic so late in this delightful game.

Susan ordered lobster rolls.  The helping was so generous, it yielded a take-home portion we shared for lunch the next day.
My Surf-n-Turf was a delicious distraction from my slowly dwindling Caesar.  The ribs were textbook samples, tender, and barely able to contain the bones.  They rested on some of the most perfect french fries I've ever had.  They were just the way I like them, with a deep rich potato flavour, a little limp, but retaining a hint of crispness, with nice caramel and cream colour tones.  I think they must have been fried in duck fat, or something equally decadent.

And then there was the lobster roll.  This was my second lobster roll in about a week's time.
I declare Lucille's lobster roll the winner over the Muvbox offering of a week earlier.

Please understand, you can't go wrong with either place.  In both cases the lobster is the undisputed star of the show.  Mayonnaise is only barely there, and definitely does no more than a cameo as a very discrete and retiring member of the supporting cast.  The roll at both Lucille's and Muvbox is the traditional hotdog roll, and it barely does more than serve as the utensil for moving the lobster from the plate to your mouth.

So what sets the Lucille's offering apart?  The flavour of the lobster itself of course.  Muvbox gets its lobster from the Magdalen Islands.  It's possible the frigid waters keep the flavour slightly in check.  Wherever Lucille's gets its lobster, they need to stick with it.  Yum!

If you're in Montreal and hankering for some comfort food and an all-around good time, make it over to Lucille's Oyster Dive in the Monkland village in NDG.

Oh, sorry, Montrealers have a nasty habit of turning the most fanciful place names into acronyms that only hold meaning for locals.  The Monkland village is in the heart of Notre Dame de Grâce, a 15 or 20 minute cab ride from downtown, but well worth the trip.

20 comments:

  1. Lookin' good David ... though I'm not a seafood fan, if they have ribs, I'm sure they'd have something to make me happy. I have to agree on the fries (can't say about the wait staff though) ... they look fresh cut with skin on and (twice fried) perfectly cooked, the way fries are meant to be. If done in duck fat they must have put you into taste bud heaven.

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    1. You hit the nail on the head Karen. Twice-fried they were.

      There were plenty of tempting choices. I saw a steak dish go by on it's way to anotger table that would have made a Texas rancher drool.

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  2. Very nice review of the place. And a new interpretation of "surf 'n turf". I don't think I'm close enough to "in" to even know how far away it is...

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    1. "In" is a state of mind. I'm in. You're definitely in. I think of you ride, you're much more likely to be in than not. If not "in", then very definitely cool.

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  3. I think I need to plan a vacay out your way, that looks amazing!!!

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    1. If you come, I'll show you around for sure.

      The Divas should make it a road trip.

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  4. Lobster and I don't get along - I'm not allergic; I just don't like it - but I could eat ribs 5 nights a week. And with scenery thrown in? Maybe all 7. Great fries, good ribs, I'm "in" for that.

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    1. Dave I'll eventually find a moto excuse to do Blakstrap. Guaranteed no seafood there.

      It looks like the other Bob and I will meet for lunch there, just don't know when precisely. September-ish for sure.

      Delete
  5. Well, David, having a great time, eh? We should all meet in Montreal and have you as our tour and culinary guide (but please work in some vegan options).

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    1. If you come, I'll do my best to make it a mpto-extravaganza. Every venue will have vegan choices and I'll find one or two that are only vegan.

      Delete
  6. David, I like ribs but I'd go seafood first, every time and Lucille's looks like a very proper place to enjoy it.

    You painted everything with very vibrant colors here; the photos almost an aside.

    For the very little that it's worth, I'll add that I'm a fan of polka-dots.

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    1. I'm now kicking myself for not sneaking a shot of the dots. What was I thinking? I could have blamed it on the Caesar.

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  7. I had to laugh when you said Seafood Caesar, I thought of a Caesar Salad with seafood on top and not the libation.....I think I am too old for my age, lol.

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    1. Too funny!

      'too old for my age'... that's a first. Although somehow, I don't think so. C'mon now. Take a step back, look at the lifestyle, too old for your age? Nonsense.

      You were thinking I was too old to be behaving so poorly :)

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  8. David:

    What ! Two stunning lobster rolls within one week ? I mean, why bother going to the Atlantic coast when you have it all there. Ribs, Swartz, Lobsters I just need to bring along my Bilingual tour guide whom knows were all the "IN" places are to be "COOL"

    and I'll take Canajun's share of the seafood . . .

    bob: riding the wet coast

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    1. You're right of course Bob. After Vancouver, the next best place in Canada in terms of things to do and things to eat, is Montreal.

      When you take into account all the quality of life factors, right now, if the political peace holds (and it now seems like bedrock compared to all previous times going back to the 1960s), Montreal may just be the place to be in Canada.

      Seems ironic if you ask me.

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  9. David ... do I feel a moto-blogger/foodie event brewing in La belle Province?

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    1. Hmmmm.... I came of age in the 60s, if it feels good, do it.

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  10. I reckon Our Lady of Grace got to hear somebody's confession after this orgy.

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    1. Michael, that's the ine thing I rarely do. Translate Montreal place names into English. I guess it's because in English it's NDG of course.

      I often translate into Spanish though.

      Sainte Foy = Santa Fe

      Delete

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