Not much comment required here… the best place in the world to eat the best lobsters in the world is New England, preferably within 100 miles of the coast. We bought these beauties live, from a tank; each one weighed about 1.5 pounds.
Now the awkward part – how to kill the little dears? While plunging them headfirst into a large pot of boiling water is the time-honored way, some say that there is a more humane way to do it with a knife, which you can see here, complete with gruesome photos of lobster-cide. A friend skilled in biology once told me that lobsters have such a basic nervous system there is some doubt about whether they actually feel pain, as we think of it. Who knows? Ask a lobster!
The advantage of the quick knife through the brain is, supposedly, instant and relatively painless death. The benefit of the boiling water method accrues completely to the murderess – one can look the other way and scream while thrusting the beast into the pot. That way you won’t hear it if it screams. Surely death by boiling water is also quick? I have never heard a lobster scream, but then, being a practitioner of the second method, I have a pretty well-developed scream of my own.
However you choose to do in your lobster, serve it with drawn butter and lemon, and put out a big bowl for shells and extra liquid, as well as plenty of napkins. If you’ve never eaten lobster and don’t know how to tackle it, you can find some excellent instruction here.
A note on what you might find within: if you find some orange stuff you’ve got a female and those are her eggs – considered delicious by many. The green stuff is the lobster’s liver; while it is yummy, it might not be such a good idea to eat it; the liver is where all the poisons and contaminants of the lobster’s body gather. The lobster is a bottom-dwelling garbage eater, so what his body considers poison is probably pretty gross.
Is it worth traveling to New England to eat lobster. Oh yes! The ‘shedders’ (lobsters who have outgrown their old, hard carapace and are wearing a new one that is still soft) have less meat in relation to the shell size, but the shell is much softer, and some consider the meat sweeter. Typically a lobster sheds in the summer, so if you want a crusty old fella bursting with meat, eat lobster in the winter or spring. Having said that, my two companions had hard-shell lobsters and mine was soft-shelled; you really just never know.