Christmas is fast approaching (faster than perhaps I’d like), so I wanted to write a quick post on gift ideas for people who love Maine and/or love lobster.
The Best Gifts for People Who Love Maine Lobster
For lobster lovers, there is perhaps no better gift than some live Maine lobster delivered right to their door. In a previous post, I wrote about the best places for ordering live lobster as well as cooked lobster products (lobster mac and cheese, anyone?) online. My recommendations were:
1. Hancock Gourmet Lobster Company : a family run company, based in Cundy’s Harbor who have been in the business of shipping live Maine lobster and other lobster products for many years. You can get Live Maine Lobsters shipped to your door plus a wide variety of other lobster products from Lobster Mac and Cheese, Lobster Pot Pies and Lobster Bisque to Downeast Lobster Rolls (which have very good reviews on Amazon).
2. Cousin’s Maine Lobster: a newer establishment but they’re making waves in the Maine lobster distribution business. They currently list two live Maine lobsters (1 and1/4 pounds each) for $65.00 on their website (the shipping element/price is a bit unclear to me). Cousin’s also offer a variety of other lobster products for purchase from their website.
3. Dorr Lobster Co : Dorr are another family run lobster business based in Downeast Maine. One neat thing about ordering live lobster from Dorr’s is that the lobster will come with a special tag on it, which you can use to see exactly where the lobster came from – down to the specific fisherman who caught the lobster.
Beyond live lobster, there are some great books about lobster fishing out there which can bring the taste of Maine right into your lap. I’ve read most of the books on Maine lobster fishing as research for my own book and recommend the following books as great gifts:
1. The Lobster Coast: Rebels, Rusticators, and the Struggle for a Forgotten Frontier: A great cultural history of Maine, providing an interesting, in depth account of how Maine was settled and how Maine lobster fishing evolved into the thriving business it is today. It also offers some great insight into why Mainers are such rugged, stoic characters. A beautiful and insightful read.
2. The Lobster Chronicles: Life On a Very Small Island: A laugh-out-loud story of lobster fishing on a small island in Maine, written by a native.
3. The Lobster Gangs of Maine: A fascinating sociological study of Maine fishermen, written several
decades ago but still referenced today. If you’re interested in learning about ‘trap wars’ (also referred to as ‘lobster wars’), this book is for you.
4. How to Catch a Lobster in Down East Maine: My book provides a comprehensive, authentic account of what it’s like to be a Maine lobster fishermen, with a focus on lobster fishing along the Downeast coast. It covers everything from the lingo used by lobster fishermen and what happens during a day on the boat to the unwritten rules of lobster fishing, lobster conservation and lobster recipes.
There are also some great children’s books which bring Maine and lobster fishing to life for little ones. My favorite children’s books on Maine and lobster fishing, which make for great gifts, are as follows:
1. Burt Dow, Deep-Water Man: An adventurous tale with beautiful illustrations by Robert Mccloskey. Great for kids aged three to eight.
2. One Morning in Maine: Another Mccloskey classic, about the adventures of an island family in Maine. Good for four to eight-year-olds.
3. Lobsterman: Chosen as one of Yankee Magazine’s Top 100 Classic Children’s Books, it tells the story of a day in the life of a lobsterman’s son, working alongside his father. For ages 4 and up.
4. Counting Our Way to Maine: I read this book to my (currently one-and-a-half-year-old) daughter
before bed every night. She loves it and when we get to the lobster fishing page she now points to the fisherman in his boat and says ‘Gramp!’. I started reading this book to Anya when she was around six
months old. It’s great for little ones.
5. Going Lobstering: A simple picture book about a day out on the boat. Great for little ones, six months old and up.
Hope you find this information useful and good luck with your gift giving – and getting!