It’s lobster season in South Florida – our clawless sweet bugs are now coming to land via the lobster fishermen – mostly taken in and around the Keys.
With a license and a few tools (including a ruler), those willing to dive can catch their own dinner. Divers in the know say Florida Bay is the place to get them quickly and just by snorkeling – depths are a mere 6 to 10 feet in the bay and there are plenty of lobster holes to plunder.
Here are basic regulations for lobstering from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission; the complete list of regulations and requirements be found at their website: myfwc.com.
Regular Spiny Lobster Season
|Season dates||Bag limit||Possession limit – on the water||Minimum size limit|
|Aug. 6 – March 31||6 per person per day||Equal to the daily bag limit||Carapace larger than 3″, measured in the water
Possession and use of a measuring device is required at all times
Find out how to measure spiny lobster
***Harvest of lobster is prohibited in Everglades National Park, Dry Tortugas National Park, and no-take areas in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary.
Not a diver? Cod and Capers Seafood in North Palm Beach has them for you fresh. Broil or grill the tails in or out of the shell just till opaque.
If you prefer the Maine lobsters – we can’t resist claws! – check out the Wednesday deal at Prime, the supper club in Delray Beach. For $39, diners get up to three Maine lobsters plus potatoes and corn during their Lobster Mania summer promotion.
Down in Boca Raton, the place for bugs is Chops Lobster Bar. (Don’t miss their lobster mac n’ cheese.)
The long-time favorite for lobster in Palm Beach County is in Lantana at the Station House, where Maine lobster dinners rule. The old former train station is outfitted for dining at the bar and tables indoors where it’s cool.
Hankering for a lobster roll? Check out the Dune Deck Cafe. An outdoors, on the dunes spot at Lantana Beach, it’s a perfect setting for eating the traditional lobster meat mixture served on a roll.
Linda Bean’s Perfect Maine, a cafe in Delray, has its fans for the Maine crustaceans on a roll. They’re traditional – a little mayo and a lot of lobster.
Farther north, Jupiter’s Chowderheads features both the traditional Maine and Rhode Island versions of lobster roll, with the mayo mix on one, and melted butter on the other. Fried clams and a number of summery seafood offerings also are on their menu.
A number of other seafood and steak spots run lobster specials during the summer including Spoto’s Oyster Bar in Palm Beach Gardens and Stuart.
Cod and Capers: 1201 U.S. Highway 1, North Palm Beach; 561-622-0963; codandcapers.com
Prime: 110 E. Atlantic Ave., Delray Beach; 561-865-5845; primedelray.com
Chops Lobster Bar: 101 Plaza Real South, Boca Raton; 561-395-2675; buckheadrestaurants.com
The Station House: 233 E. Lantana Road, Lantana; 561-547-9487; stationrestaurants.com
Linda Bean’s Perfect Maine: 200 E. Atlantic Ave., Delray; 561-276-2502; lindabeansperfectmaine.com
Dune Deck Cafe: 100 N. Ocean Blvd., Lantana; 561-582-0472; dunedeckcafe.com
Chowderheads: 2123 S. U.S. Highway 1, Jupiter; 561-203-2903; chowderheadsusa.com