New York Openings: Lobster Joint, Kittery of Brooklyn

Back in the day, lobsters were fertilizer and fish bait. Even into colonial times the meat was considered worthy only of servants and prisoners. Fast-forward to contemporary NYC and fresh lobster is all but a fetish. Low-key seafood spots are proliferating. The meat is a luxury. The atmosphere is casual. And there’s a nostalgic connection to summers and the seaside. Newcomers Lobster Joint and Kittery of Brooklyn are prime examples of why seafood shacks are the new black.

Greenpoint and Rockaways sensation Lobster Joint has taken on a prime slice of East Houston. The spot skews quaint, with picnic tables, whitewashed walls, and natural light streaming in from the skylight. Order off the hand-lettered menu and settle in for seriously fresh fruits of the sea. Lobster rolls are signatures, made in two styles: warm Connecticut, or New England with herb mayo. There are ample alternative rolls, too, from clam to crab to crispy oyster. If you want the full feast, opt for a dinner, complete with corn, potatoes, coleslaw, and a pound and a half of succulent lobster.

Vacationland comes to Carroll Gardens with the opening of Kittery of Brooklyn. A corner spot with ample yardage does its best impression of Maine coastal dining. Ayuh, they’re serving lobstah rolls, with meat shipped straight from Kittery. Borders broaden with a selection of sustainable ocean seafood, fished from Maine all the way down to the Gulf of Mexico. New England native Josh Moulton helms the kitchen, drawing on memories of early Down East years (recent stints at Monkey Bar and Union Square Café make for a high-wattage résumé). Nautical-themed digs are a reminder that the Atlantic is just a short hop on the F away.

Photo by Erin & Camera/Flickr