Lobster Salad with Citrus, Tarragon and Verjus

Lobster Salad with Citrus, Tarragon and Verjus

(Serves 2)

For the vinaigrette

1 tablespoon verjus

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon lime zest

1/2 teaspoon pink peppercorns, lightly crushed

1 teaspoon finely chopped


1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

For the salad

1 orange, peeled and separated into segments, pith and membrane removed

1 lime, peeled and separated into segments, pith and membrane removed

1/2 teaspoon fresh tarragon, chopped

2 1-1/2 pound Maine lobsters, steamed, shelled and cut into bite-sized pieces

1 head butter lettuce, washed, dried and torn into bite- sized pieces

6 spears of asparagus, steamed until crisp-tender and cut into 12-inch pieces

To make the vinaigrette: Place the verjus in a small bowl. Whisk in the salt, lime zest, pink peppercorns and shallots. Whisk in olive oil in a thin, steady stream until completely blended. Set aside.

To make the salad: Place the orange and lime segments in a large bowl and toss with the chopped tarragon. Pour the vinaigrette on top and toss gently. Add the lobster, lettuce and asparagus and toss gently until combined. Taste and adjust seasonings, if necessary. Serve chilled.


“Here we are left with a bit of a quandary. High-acid citrus and verjus with dense and decadent lobster surrounded with asparagus leaves a sommelier’s head aspin with possibly tragic choices. White wine will be overpowered by these flavors, and anything with tannin is generally uncomplementary to shellfish. Champagne saves the day! Were champagne still, the acid levels would leave it almost unpleasant to drink. However, with the secondary fermentation and resultant bubbles, all is well. A lush nonvintage champagne would work best here, but bring an umbrella to the table as you will be showered with compliments for another perfect match.”

— Chris Oppewall, sommelier


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