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Wander Minnesota: Lobster Rocks

When I grew up in northern Minnesota, lobster was very much a special-occasion, very-expensive, once-in-a-great-while kind of treat. It involved going to a nice restaurant (a dinner club—remember those?), and for me, it also sadly meant dressing up, including pantyhose, which made eating things like lobster synonymous with "uncomfortable."

Then for a couple of years I lived in New England, and was shocked to find those craven, mannerless New Englanders eating lobster out of shacks, at picnic tables, on concrete slabs, dressed in shorts and tank tops and baseball caps. Good heavens! That's no way to appreciate lobster!

Except it is. The lobster boil is a New England staple, of course, and they've got it figured out. Lobster is a messy, hands-on, hard-work kind of entrée. It makes total sense to approach it as a picnic, rather than an elegant evening out.

So I was greatly cheered when I heard that Josh Thoma of the Smack Shack had teamed up with northeast Minneapolis' 1029 Bar to offer good old-fashioned lobster boils this summer.

1029 Bar
(credit: Amy Rea)

Back behind the 1029 Bar, the Smack Shack has an enormous boiling pot, periodically filled with lobsters, meeting their culinary fate.

Lobster Tank
(credit: Amy Rea)

For just $27, you get your very own 1 ¼-pound lobster, corn, potatoes, and bread from the Salty Tart. Not to mention the requisite plastic bib, lots of napkins—and plenty of melted butter.

Lobster Plates
(credit: Amy Rea)

What a way to spend a summer afternoon or evening—cracking open your piping hot lobster, rooting for treasure in the bright red shell, and chowing down on sweet corn. The 1029 Bar will happily take your beverage order, adult or not, and you'll be set.

You need to make reservations for the lobster boil. The next one takes place July 23, and you can make reservations here. Also, keep an eye on the Smack Shack's event page—it looks like they have an even more major lobster event coming in August.

The lobster boil should make you happy. But if you need more happiness, here's some lobster-related goofiness to enjoy.

What else is happening in our state? Be sure to check out the 10 p.m. Sunday night WCCO newscasts, where you can learn more in the weekly segment, Finding Minnesota.

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