Lauren’s Food Truck Reviews, Vol. 1: Cousins Maine Lobster

Since its expansion to cities across the nation, Cousins Maine Lobster has become popular among seafood lovers.

Lauren Washington, Reporter

From its birthplace on NBC’s critically-acclaimed show Shark Tank, Cousins Maine Lobster has experienced major company growth. After its franchising, Cousins has made itself a seafood staple in many cities across the nation, including Houston. Now, Houstonians have ready access to the wonders of fresh seafood from a truck–and probably the only place in Houston that serves lobster quesadillas.

From the moment I stepped in front of the truck, I knew my experience would be positive; the aroma of fresh lobster and butter hit my nostrils immediately. Situated below the window of the truck was a sign that listed all of the shows that Cousin’s had been featured in, along with pictures of the owners, Sabin and Jim, posing with Shark Tank investor Barbara Corcoran. Upon looking at the menu, I felt slightly overwhelmed at all of the choices; lobster tacos, lobster quesadillas, lobster tots. In the end, I chose to go with something a little less-conventional; lobster grilled cheese with a side of tater tots.

I know what you’re probably thinking: who mixes pepper jack cheese and lobster and expects it to taste right? That’s exactly what I thought upon ordering. However, I wanted to taste something unique; when most people think about Maine and lobster, they think about the classic Maine lobster rolls. And I’ve eaten too many lobster rolls in my lifetime to write even a mildly interesting review on them. But you don’t want to hear me ramble about my decisions. You want to know how the food tastes.

As a person who normally hates pepper jack cheese, I was pleasantly surprised at how well it mixed with the tender lobster in the sandwich. I was also surprised at just how much lobster was in the actual sandwich–with so many restaurants skimping on how much lobster they’re willing to give, it was really nice to taste the lobster in every bite. The star of the sandwich, however, was undoubtedly the bread; buttery, warm, and appropriately greasy, it reminded me of the bread my grandmother used to make with my grilled cheese sandwiches as a child.

While the lobster grilled cheese is a tough act to follow, the tater tots still shone on their own. They were golden, seasoned with a good amount of spices, and had a good crunch to them; the flavor was reminiscent of the tater tots served at a fast food chain like Sonic (given a choice between fast-food tater tots sitting under a heat lamp and Cousin’s fresh tots, though, I’d choose the latter).

For the hardcore seafood lover, Cousin’s is a spot that you wouldn’t want to miss. With its fascinating history, affable staff, and food made with love (and a little butter), I’ll be sure to revisit the food truck in the near-future.

Final Rating: 5 lobster tails out of 5.

(view their location schedule online at www.cousinsmainelobster.com/houston)