True story: Waffles are my love language. And the only things I love eating more than waffles for brunch are seafood and soul food.
So when Red Lobster said it was introducing lobster and waffles last week, my taste buds were ready. It’s the restaurant’s 50th anniversary and annual Lobsterfest celebration, when the almost-fancy dishes are rolled out. Like everyone else on a salivating social media, I thought this chicken and waffles remix was going to be a win.
A Cheddar Bay waffle topped with a crispy, buttermilk-battered split Maine lobster tail? Hi honey, I’m home. Take my $20.
And then give it right back. I’ve never seen a dish equal parts delectable and disgraceful.
The waffle is frozen, my foodie friends. Like an Eggo, but irredeemable. It’s tossed under the broiler until it’s hard and nearly burnt.
I tried to explain to the waiter how it tasted, and before I could finish my sentence, he said, “Like disappointment.”
Even he couldn’t comprehend why the restaurant doesn’t make the waffles fresh — especially when the lobster that comes with them is crispy yet tender, fried and seasoned to perfection. I ate it with the signature (and freshly made) Cheddar Bay biscuits, wishing I could have called Grubhub to deliver me better waffles.
You don’t have to be a fan of this chain restaurant to have heard of the Cheddar Bay biscuits. I prefer to eat local, but I’m human. Who, outside of vegans and the lactose intolerant, doesn’t love those biscuits?
They have their own Facebook fan page with nearly a million followers. The copycat recipe is one of the most searched online. Red Lobster even made a box mix to sell in stores.
I figured the Cheddar Bay biscuit waffle was going to rival the cheddar, bacon and chive waffle greatness at Beer Kitchen and Char Bar. I thought it was going to be a fluffy, freshly made bed of love for the lobster to lie upon.
But all that love Red Lobster puts in the freshly made cheesy, garlic-buttery brilliance of the biscuits has been neglected in the waffle wannabes.
In “Formation,” Beyoncé sang that if bae was good she’d take him to Red Lobster. But believe me, this would be punishment.
Somebody send the fine folks of Red Lobster a waffle iron. It’s their anniversary.