12/13/2012 10:20:00 AM

First Bites: Kittery of Brooklyn Does Lobster Rolls in Carroll Gardens

Lobster roll! 
After many delays and a hurricane, the much-anticipated Kittery of Brooklyn has opened its doors on the corner of Smith and Union Streets in Carroll Gardens. The seafooder is only taking cash for the time being (there’s still trouble with the phone lines) but other than that it’s smooth sailing at the laid back new eatery, which serves an array of classic seafood dishes prepared Maine-fish-shack-style.

Boston-raised chef Josh Moulton, formerly of Monkey Bar, Café Luxembourg and Union Square Café, is behind the concept. He has spent his summers in Maine since childhood. “I have been doing seafood all my life,” he said. “I love clam shacks, and making a lobster roll is something I have always done. For me it’s home food.”

The principle goal of Kittery, which is named after a small fishing town in Maine, is to showcase sustainable offerings fished from Moulton's native coast down to the Gulf of Mexico. You’ll find some clam shack staples on the menu - think fish and chips, BBQ shrimp rolls, fresh Blue Point oysters, fried calamari and classic clam chowder with bacon. Moulton also whips up a light lobster stew, rich sea scallops seared and paired with truffled cauliflower, and a traditional iceberg salad.

And then there’s the main event: the lobster roll. The $18 dish is served on golden, buttery bread, and it is brimming with hearty chunks of lobster. Another dish Moulton prides himself on is a tarragon-laced lobster bisque. It’s made over the course of three-days with a process that uses rice as a thickener, so this bisque is gluten-free.

The corner space used to house Diego, and before that Union Smith Café, all owned by Jimmy Mammary and James Geritano. This is their third attempt for success at the address, and the only place like it in the neighborhood. It isn’t immediately apparent why their previous ventures didn’t succeed. The corner space is beautiful and features a large, gated outdoor seating area. Inside, there is room for a full bar, a few tables in the front and booths in the back.

For this go-round, the owners gave the space a nautical-style makeover and whitewashed the outside front wall. The interior walls are covered with memorabilia from Maine and a red-and-white abstract painting of a boat sits over the stairs. On the tables, white tin plates and plaid tablecloths covered with brown butcher paper evoke a simple seaside restaurant.

Right now, you can score a lobster roll for dinner until 11 PM nightly, except for Sunday when the restaurant stays open until 10 PM. Moulton has plans to reel customers in for brunch, so except the weekend meal to launch soon.

The Details: 305 Smith St., Brooklyn; 718-643-3293


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