Lobster Burger Bar
Toronto, ON M5H 3SG
Lobster Burger Bar is bringing a fresh new spin on seafood to Toronto. After settling into their first location above Coffee Oysters and Champagne, the lobster and burger bar is now getting ready to expand all over the city.
When managing partner Marcel Schneebeli and president Ivan Ye first heard about the U.K.-based restaurant chain Burger and Lobster, they decided they wanted to bring the same concept of surf and turf to Toronto. But their spinoff aims to emulate Toronto’s unique vibe. “They do it a little more up-market, a little more stiff, so we wanted to tone it down; music, lighting, quality. A pint of beer with a lobster goes well and you can feel comfortable about the price point,” said Schneebeli. The laid-back atmosphere is also a nod to the East Coast way of life, from the minimalist design to the affordable and fresh seafood.
The menu, created by Marcel Schneebeli, offers an assortment of dishes that revolve around (yes, you guessed it) lobster and burgers. Curated with help from executive chef Vishal Babooram, the menu is a dynamic mix of East Coast-inspired favourites, mixed in with flavours from the different backgrounds represented in management. The thing LBB wanted to master with this restaurant was to really show off the freshness of their lobster, which they import straight from Halifax. The restaurant gets fresh lobster into their shop every second day, brought in from their holding tank in Richmond Hill. LBB also works with Thunder Ridge Bison Co. in Uxbridge, to get the best grass-fed and sustainable bison patties, and EPI Bakery in Toronto for their buttery lobster rolls and burger buns.
“The taco craziness of Toronto, is why we had to do a taco,” Schneebeli says about the YYZ Lobster Taco ($12). “The texture should be the first thing that hits you,” says Babooram.
Being that chef Babooram was classically French trained, the lobster bisque ($12) is highlighted on this menu. “As soon as we blanch or steam them, I start my bisque right away,” says Babooram. This allows the bisque to retain that oceanic flavour while remaining sweet and creamy.
This wouldn't be a lobster bar without a fresh lobster roll ($23). The #Classic, is served on a fresh brioche bun from EPI bakery and topped with a hefty pile of chilled lobster that’s been tossed in a little mayo and lemon juice. "This lobster is probably five to six hours old before you get it and is tossed to order. There's nothing that's being built sitting in a container or pulled out of the fridge to get fridge burn," says Babooram.
The combos might be the LBB’s main attraction when it comes to the menu. Served on a silver platter, you can really get a smorgasbord of different menu items for a reasonable price. Combo #1 (on special for $35, but regularly $55) comes with a 10oz beef burger, a ½ pound of fried, grilled or steamed lobster and your choice of two sides.
The bar at Lobster Burger Bar encourages a communal atmosphere. Built in a large semicircle, this space is made for socializing, watching a game and enjoying LBB's Snappy Hour beers and bites. The cocktail program at LBB brings east coast refreshers together with Toronto classics. They are even in the works of cultivating a lobster-infused beer with a local Ontario brewery.
Take the LBB Caesar ($14). This classic Canadian beverage is given a classic LBB spin, with a mini slider and chunk of lobster added to the top.
The Pacific sweet water ($9) is a refreshing sip made with lychee liquor, sake and a touch of simple syrup.
For dessert, LBB offers some seriously sweet shakes ($6). These milkshakes come in a variety of flavours and are dressed to the nines in whipped cream, sprinkles and topped with a maraschino cherry.
With a 20-plus seat communal bar and many separate dining areas, Lobster Burger Bar is definitely more jeans and T-shirts than suits and ties. Partitions line the walls, creating some semi-private dining spaces, while the open centre space is filled with tables and plush booths.
Guests sitting in the back of the restaurant can peek into the kitchen and get a taste of the action.
There is also many large booths close to the bar, great for watching the game with some friends.
By: Nicole Richie, Posted on Jan. 21