Grilled Lobster with Marionberries and Bourbon

Two things I learned about grilling when I moved to Oregon from Utah. First is that if the ambient temperature doesn’t feel like you are standing in a grill, you are much more charitable to the ideal of grilling. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve stood outside over a hot barbecue wondering where the heat of the grill began and the heat of the day ended.

The second thing that I’ve learned is that I love the taste of food cooked over hot coals that weren’t tainted with the flavor of chemical fire starter. I don’t say that as a purist with any sort of attachment to grilling one way or the other. If you grill over a gas flame or use fire starter, keep on doing you. I mean that. But I can taste the difference of food cooked over coals, and I suggest you give it a go just to see if you feel the same way.

With my new appreciation for grilling, I’ve spent an extended amount of time barbecuing anything I can get my hands on. This is one of the best things I’ve made.

Lobster has a special flavor when you cook it on the grill, but you have to nail the timing or you end up with lobster jerky. I don’t even leave the grill when lobster is on the flame so I can keep a close eye on things. Color is everything to knowing when it’s time to pluck the lobsters up and tuck in.

I love lobster however you make it, but grilled lobster with marionberries, drowning in creamy butter and sitting in a bed of sweet, citrusy bourbon-marinated berries and earthy mushrooms? Summer magic. The pea shoots sprinkled liberally on top are merely a bright bonus.

Choosing the Ingredients

Don’t get hung up on getting the exact ingredients. I chose marionberries because they are in season – I picked these off the bush just before tossing them into the dish – and they have just the right amount of tartness that I was looking for. You can use whatever is in season – but a tart berry like a blackberry, currant or goose berry works best.

You could also use king crab legs instead of lobster, rose petals instead of pea shoots, and cucumber instead of apples.

Grilled Lobster with Marionberries Ingredients

Serves 2

  • 1/2 onion
  • 1 cup chopped mushroom 
  • 2 lobster tails
  • 1/2 apples 
  • 1/2 cup berries 
  • Pea shoots
  • 1/2 cup bourbon 
  • Butter
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Pour the bourbon and a tablespoon of butter into a pan and heat. Add chopped mushrooms and chopped apples and cook until soft. Add berries. Set aside and keep warm. If you’re in Utah, that means setting the plate anywhere outdoors – it’s all one giant oven, anyway. I kid! Not really!

Grill lobster tails until done.

Scoop apple/berry/mushroom mix onto a plate. Place a lobster on the plate and sprinkle with pea shoots. Add butter and salt and pepper to taste.

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