One of three new casual lobster joints to open in central London this past month, Smack Lobster Roll Deli is probably the one with the best credentials. Coming from the people behind the hugely popular and ever expanding Burger & Lobster (who have recently crossed the pond to New York), they have decided to take the best item on their limited menu and turn it into a fast food concept.
The first thing that strikes you when walking in is the huge menu board and the prices. £7.50 (£9 eat-in) for a lobster roll! Sure there must be some kind of catch – immediately I assumed the rolls would be tiny, or that the toppings would make up the bulk of the filling.
The second thing that strikes you is the “Wine, Beer & Naked Women” sign pointing downstairs. Not sure why it’s necessary to chuck in casual misogyny in an effort to be ‘cool’, even on the menu it was apparent – I’d love to be there when a parent inevitably has to explain to their child what a “Happy Ending” is. Anyway, back to the food. I had barely gotten comfortable, when my buzzer buzzed for my roll to be collected.
Erm, I couldn’t have been more wrong about the size/quantity.
It was literally loaded with chunks of claw, filled to bursting. I’d never had a lobster roll that had anything more exciting than drawn butter & chives or some lemon mayo and old bay, so was a bit wary of all those punchy flavours overpowering the lobster, but they were perfectly complimentary, especially the kick from the togarashi on top. Literally the only downside to the food I could think of was that the meat was a little dry, as you would expect from a pre-cooked lobster, but otherwise great – a perfect lunch spot for workers or shoppers.