I’m a traitor. I was born in Maine. I lived in New England for a collective 20 years. Most of my family is in Maine and Massachusetts. I was a Red Sox fan even when I lived in Nebraska, and a Patriots fan even during the ugly years. And I am here to say: the best lobster roll I’ve ever eaten was in North Carolina.

Don’t look at me like that.
cousins maine lobster raleigh lobster roll
The Cousins Maine Lobster food truck has made its way to North Carolina, and before you even ask yes it absolutely is worth standing in that long line. You may already be familiar with Cousins from Shark Tank (I was not; that show makes my neck sweat.) or from their truck-turned-restaurant in LA. They’ve franchised their trucks and are now in 11 locations, including Raleigh.
The Cousins lobster roll goes like this:

  • Start with a toasted, buttery top-split white bread hot dog bun. WE WILL ACCEPT NO SUBSTITUTIONS.
  • Add a squeeze of mayo along the bottom of the bun.
  • Stuff generously with lobster meat.

Yep, that’s it. With every bite you get a little mayo, some bun, and a metric shit ton of lobster, which is exactly the correct, scientifically-proven ratio. No gloopy lobster salad. No celery. No whatever-other-fancypants-ingredient you’re mistakenly adding to your lobster roll. Just the best things in life, in a package designed to neatly stuff into your face over and over.

There’s nothing like a crisp summer evening in Maine, my grandmother’s baked beans that cook all day long to be eaten that night with brown bread and Red Snapper hot dogs, getting a sunburn in the bleacher seats at Fenway, and lobster rolls in North Carolina. Go Sox.