Lovin' lobster at Lobstah's
louise bolger | sun
From left, Chef Bob Brodeur and owner Jeff Levey
welcome diners to Lobstah's.
Remember the classic lobster scene from Woody Allen’s 1977 movie, "Annie Hall," with Allen and Diane Keaton chasing lobsters around the floor of their beach house? If cooking lobster at home presents the same challenge to you as it did to Annie Hall, there’s a restaurant in Holmes Beach that makes it look easy.
In March the curtain went up on the second act of Jeff Levey’s life on Anna Maria. The first act was when he and his wife Bert Schaefer purchased the iconic Ginny’s & Jane E’s in Anna Maria once they relocated to the west coast of Florida. After talking to hundreds of residents and visitors who passed through Ginny’s, Levey decided the one thing the Island was missing was the availability of fresh cold water lobster and shellfish.
And the lobsters don’t get any fresher than at Lobstahs, where they contently thrive after their arrival from Maine in the only lobster tank on the Island. But lobsters aren’t the only thing on the menu at Lobstahs. There is a different lunch and dinner menu, both with plenty of variety, all created and prepared under the watchful eye of Executive Chef Bob Brodeur, who uses only the freshest food and even makes his own fresh mozzarella.
For lunch, you can choose lite bites like mozzarella sticks, calamari or oysters; a nice selection of salads like chicken and fruit salad; some pasta dishes; and, of course, fresh lobster and lobster dishes. Lobstahs also offers sandwiches including the catch of the day fish, crab cake and portabella mushroom, as well as fish and chips and, naturally, Maine Lobstah Roll.
The dinner menu has everything from the signature lobster in the size of your choice, steamed or broiled, to hand cut beef dishes with a little bit of Italy thrown in. The Lazy Garlic Lobstah Casserole and Lobstah Pot Pie are two of the outstanding lobster dishes, but there also is Groupah In A Bag, stuffed flounder, linguini and clams, filet of sole and more. Lobstahs has recently introduced smaller plates for both lunch and dinner called “Dinghy” portions for diners who would like to try a couple of different dishes or have a smaller appetite. Cannoli, tiramisu and other desserts are also available, and if you never ate a whole lobster you’ll find step by step instructions on the back of the menu.
Lobstahs has a full bar with an extensive wine list and six beers on tap in addition to Signatcha Cocktails including bloody Mary with a Gulf shrimp garnish, mint julep and pina colada. Happy hour is every day from 3 to 6 p.m.
Lobstahs has three dining areas – their fine dining indoor room with tropical décor and fabulous wrap around bar, an outside deck and the indoor Tiki Room and bar, which feels like you’re outdoors and where local bands play on Friday and Saturday nights. You can also try your luck at winning a live lobster for $2.
Lobstahs does take out for small and large gatherings and is happy to host parties for all occasions, and with its own parking lot, parking is never an issue.
If you’re wondering about some of Lobstahs creative spelling, Levey will tell you if you visit his home town in Long Island, N. Y., you’ll understand. He’ll also tell you that the best thing about owning a restaurant is that all his friends and neighbors eventually drop in, so he gets to see them all.
The next time you’re craving something from the sea, give Lobstahs a try. Just like Annie Hall, everyone at Lobstahs speaks shellfish, and they have the tank to prove it.
5337 Gulf Drive
All major credit cards accepted
Open every day
Noon to 10 p.m.