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Take one Bean, many boatloads of succulent Maine lobster, and a smart-looking little eatery on Delray Beach's Restaurant Row and you've got Linda Bean's Perfect Maine Lobster Roll, which made its Atlantic Avenue debut a few days back after months of bloggy anticipation.
This first outlet in South Florida will be one of a reported hundred to be rolled out
nationwide, and it certainly looks like a well-financed operation. The heir to the L.L. Bean fortune hopes to help revitalize the sagging Maine lobster industry with the chain.
The smallish indoor eating area crams as much seating as possible into the space. It sports a pale sea-green and white color scheme inside and out, with a classy green-and-white tile floor, white columns, and a bronze pressed-tin trey ceiling. For "fast casual" -- you order at the counter, take a number, and wait for your food to be delivered -- it's definitely an upscale look.
However perfect Linda Bean's lobster rolls are, they're not cheap: $15.50 for a quarter-pound of meat tucked into a soft roll with mayo and dried herbs, plus a bag of potato chips and three sweet pickle slices. There's other stuff too -- a shrimp roll, various panini, steamed clams, mussels, soups and salads, even a hot dog, plus something called a Maine whoopie pie.
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