Skip to content

Posts from the ‘Sheepshead Bay’ Category

Jordan’s Lobster Dock

Like an out-of-touch politician clueless about the price of milk (I have no idea, myself), I don’t know what lobsters normally sell for. $6.99 seems like a deal, though. The prospect of cheap lobster was enough to motivate me onto the Belt Parkway to Sheepshead Bay on a freezing Sunday afternoon, a neighborhood I normally associate with summer and Clemente’s.

Jordan's lobster dock

Clowns to the left, jokers to the right… Jordan’s is stuck in the middle of a Cold Stone Creamery and TGI Friday’s.

Jordan's lobster dock seating

When you first walk in, Jordan’s has a casual eat-in restaurant where you can order platters of fried seafood, chowder and sandwiches. (And sadly, no bread bowls. I’ll never be able to erase the sound of a grown man’s voice, heavily Brooklyn-accented, on the JFK air train, describing a chicken salad in a bread bowl at a place called Jordan’s as “bangin’.”) Up a few stairs, you’ll see the retail market and where the $6.99 lobsters, clams and assorted shellfish can be bought to take home. Cooking soft-shell crabs at home is as far as I’ve gone with kill-your-own food—and I was more squeamish about it than I’d like to admit as a carnivore—so I chickened-out and had them steam our two lobsters for us.
Jordan's lobster roll

While waiting, we went back downstairs and got some snacks. Jordan’s $15.99 lobster roll is served with a plastic container of coleslaw and a foil packet of Hellman’s. Barely a sandwich, this creation is really a pile of chunky lobster meat atop a flap of iceberg lettuce and a nondescript bun. I’m absolutely not a connoisseur of the city’s recent-ish lobster roll deluge, so I can only compare with the buttery Connecticut-style specimen I had at Red Hook Lobster Pound right before Christmas (which unfortunately, I didn’t photograph for comparison).

This lobster was a little overly chilled and stiff, though still sweet, and there was double the quantity of what I was served in Red Hook. Less delicate, for sure. This was a manly lobster roll.  I only wish that I had a beer (they do serve alcohol but I don’t go in for hair of the dog cures) and could’ve sat outside instead of being forced indoors by the snow and slush.

Somehow, I forgot to take a photo of the most important thing: the cooked lobsters, two enormous two-and-a-half pounders too large for any plates in my house.

Jordan’s Lobster Dock * 3165 Harkness Ave., Brooklyn, NY

Clemente’s Maryland Crabhouse

1/2 Convincing thirteen people to endure a lengthy B/Q ride (maybe the B line is the shit—Grub Street was all over it today) then walk a mile in high heat and humidity would seem like a tough sell, but I was lucky enough to coerce a crew out to Clemente’s Crabhouse in Sheepshead Bay on Saturday. I don’t normally do destination birthday parties or group dinners because trauma invariably ensues. Maybe the frozen margaritas, sea air and ‘90s jukebox hits (I thought I’d permanently blocked out the Spin Doctors) messed with my ability to judge, but I did feel better about hitting “the wrong side of my thirties” as one friend ominously remarked in a card.

Sure, Clemente’s can be a pain in the ass to get to, but the fun is being in completely non-Brooklyn feeling Brooklyn. The urge to buy a houseboat is not an unusual reaction after sitting on the pier for a few hours. Sprouting tan muscles, a moustache and donning a tank top and denim shorts might occur if you stay too long, though.

All-you-can-eat crabs were definitely in order since on my previous visit last year I chickened out and lobster rolled it. Minus the poor vegetarians forced to witness mass crustacean carnage, most diners opted for the same $29.95 deal. Massive metal bowls filled with both Old Bay and garlic and oil drenched crabs took over the paper-covered table. I’ll admit that I’m lame with meat extraction and it takes a lot of effort with little pay off. The crabs aren’t huge by any means. I doubt I went through more than ten, though I didn’t keep count.

After everyone seemed sated and dusk approached, there were still claws and bodies aplenty. It seemed like a waste but I couldn’t take anymore. That’s when James stepped up and went nuts. I swear, an hour after everyone else threw in the lobster bib, he was still cracking and picking like a machine. I started getting nervous that he might start turning red, sprouting claws and walking sideways. There’s no doubt that he got his money’s worth.

James's overflowing refuse bucket captured by Nao.

We really couldn’t call it an evening until the candle adorned, deep-fried Twinkie doused in ice cream made an appearance. I’m not one to indulge in party pics, in fact I keep humans out of the picture as much as possible, but lest you think my only friends are my laptop and TV, here you are. No, I’m not in any of them because I looked like a sweaty blob and my incessant rambling is more than enough.

Read more