Before fishermen invented boats, the difficulty of lassoing lobster from the shore and the embarrassment of slow-motion underwater fish chases made seafood a rare delicacy. Imbibe in the fruits of modern buoyancy with today's Groupon: for $25, you get $50 worth of coastal fare at Hancock Gourmet Lobster Company, at its store location in Topsham or online. While shipping is not included, the value of this Groupon can be used toward shipping costs, which begin at $20.95.
Hancock Gourmet transforms locally harvested seafood into small batches of take-home dishes, bringing fresh lobster and crab from shore to door at its storefront or with overnight or two-day delivery. The Port Clyde lobster mac ‘n’ cheese ($33.95 for two 9-oz. containers) has earned the establishment national recognition on Food Network’s Throwdown with Bobby Flay. This trademark dish oozes with Maine lobster and mascarpone-cheddar sauce, crowned with panko crumbs, herbed butter, lemon zest and parmesan cheese.
Hancock Gourmet's host of other appetizers, soups, and entrees incorporates the daily catch from local fishermen in nearby Casco Bay. Sample the Spruce Head smoked-scallop lobster bisque ($28 per quart), melding lobster meat with smoked bay scallops in a spiced cream base. Pemaquid Point lobster pot pies ($68.50 for four) bathe chunks of lobster in a sherry-splashed cream sauce inside a crisp puff pastry. Each individually packaged pot pie comes in a reusable ceramic ramekin, perfect for savory soufflés or hiding candy from sugar-crazed strangers. Most items ship frozen and arrive ready to pass off as your own recipe.
The Hancock Gourmet Lobster Company received two sofi gold awards in 2010 for Outstanding Soup, Stew, Bean or Chili and for Outstanding Frozen Savory. It also received two sofi awards in 2008 for Outstanding Pasta, Rice or Grain and Outstanding Soup, Stew, Bean or Chili. Both the New York Times and Throwdown with Bobby Flay featured the Hancock Gourmet Lobster Company.