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One of my favorite parts of travel is eating local food. I mean, one of my favorite things in general is eating, so this really is no surprise. Once kids came along, some meals on the road (and at home) become just fuel instead of a fun experience, and our first meal in Rhode Island held true to that pattern. However, just when I thought I was doomed to McDonald’s nuggets, there was a fun surprise waiting on the menu.
We had an early morning flight from Houston to Boston, so by the time we landed in Massachusetts it was already lunchtime. We had snacked our way through breakfast on the plane, and were fully ready to eat a real lunch at Legal Sea Foods in airport in Boston before continuing our journey to Rhode Island. However, our toddler was getting very tired and cranky, the seats at Legal Sea Foods were far from kid-friendly, and after sitting for a couple minutes no one had come over to start our order. That was our cue to give up on that plan of lobster rolls in the airport and just get in the rental car and start our trip to Rhode Island.
Since the day started at 4:30AM and neither of the girls napped on the plane, we fully hoped/expected them to nap on the drive from Boston to Rhode Island. Once we got out of Boston traffic, that was exactly what happened. That was great news, but it meant that our lunch choices had narrowed to a drive-thru or starvation. I was a little bummed at ‘wasting’ a meal in the Northeast on McDonald’s drive-thru, but such is life.
As we waited in the drive-thru line and I prepared myself for our road trip staple of McNuggets and Hot Mustard Sauce (the hot mustard is what makes the meal….the nuggets are just dipping vessels), I spotted a sign on the menu advertising….LOBSTER ROLLS!
I know McDonald’s can have local specialties, but I had no clue a McDonalds’s could have a lobster roll?! I hesitated ordering since seafood is typically either really good or really bad without much in-between room, but I simply had to try an $8.99 McDonald’s lobster roll. I mean, when else does a Texan get the chance to do that? Worst case scenario I could just steal the girls’ fries if it was horrible and hold out for a better dinner.
Keeping in mind that I don’t get lobster rolls very regularly in Texas, the McDonald’s lobster roll was totally decent…once you took off some of the annoying lettuce. At less than $10 it is also 1/2 the price of most lobster rolls I have encountered.
I couldn’t find much written recently about this McDonald’s menu item anomaly, but based on last year’s info, it seems that they use 100% North Atlantic lobster and toss it lightly with mayo. It is available at select McDonald’s in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut and Albany, NY during the summer months.
Now, is it nearly as good as a real deal seaside mayo-free lobster roll? Of course not! But, if you are in a situation like we were, desperate for a taste of New England, but not able to get out of the car quite yet, it may be the best $8.99 you can spend.
And of course this story wouldn’t be complete without sharing that the second we pulled away from the McDonald’s drive thru, both girls woke up with just 20 minutes of napping under their belts and stayed awake the rest of the drive….enjoying their own nuggets and fries.
I’d love to hear about some of the fun local McDonald’s menu items you have found on your travels!