I suppose I should offer a few disclaimers up front: Amy from Austin has not been to Neptune Oyster (yet) AND Neptune not only serves one of my all-time, best-anywhere lobster rolls, but it is also one of my absolute favorite restaurants in Boston, in fact, it is absolutely one of my favorites, anywhere…and food critics agree, everyone loves Neptune Oyster. This is a somewhat biased review.
Neptune sits on a narrow and crowded side-street in Boston’s North End, our “Little Italy”, that, much like NYC’s Italian neighborhood, now caters mostly to tourists by offering sub-standard fare in cheesy (couldn’t resist, sorry) “red-sauce” establishments. Frankly, my family and I hardly ever eat in the North End, unless we are headed to Neptune or if I am doing my holiday shopping at the local salumerias, I’ll sneak in a quickie at the bar, one round of oysters and I am good-to-go. Neptune is tiny (small parties only), loud (I love, love, love the white subway-tiled walls, the tin ceiling and white marble tabletops…although not for the acoustic effect), slightly cramped (one long red leather banquette) and there is always a considerable wait (no reservations taken)…all well-worth enduring as Neptune never disappoints.
Okay, on to the lobster roll: two options, hot or cold. The hot is dripping (and I mean dripping) with butter, the cold (absolutely my preference) is just perfection. No hotdog buns at Neptune, your lobster is served on a gorgeous (but soft) baguette which is grilled and oh, so fabulous (Neptune, with its décor and vivacious vibe definitely has the feel of a French bistro). Whether hot or cold, the lobster is plentiful (nothing minced in this lobster roll) with no filler (the cold roll has just enough mayo…just enough) and served with a side of perfectly prepared fries. This is a generous dish; I usually go light on my oysters (maybe just four?) if I am ordering a lobster roll (Neptune’s entire menu is fabulous…so fabulous that a few times my family and I have celebrated the Neapolitan Feast of the Seven Fishes, here). A couple of beers (or a few glasses of prosecco, as I prefer) and really, my friends, it just does not get any better.
At $25.00 this is one of the priciest lobster rolls I’ve enjoyed but is it worth it!! If you are in, near or are planning to come to Boston, hit up Neptune, you’ll fall in love.
63 Salem Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02210