Lobster Newberg is a legendary dish with many stories surrounding it. Many culinary figures have laid claim to inventing Lobster Newberg, but it is thought that the first restaurant to serve this delicacy was the Delmonico Restaurant in New York.
According to legend, Lobster Newberg was created by a salesman working in the Caribbean fruit trade, a man called Ben Wenberg. In 1876, while dining at the Delmonico, Wenberg asked the owner, Charles Delmonico, to let him demonstrate a recipe for lobster that he had discovered on his travels. The demonstration was a success and the dish was added to the menu at the Delmonico with some slight modifications by the chef, Charles Ranhofer.
Sometime later, so the story says, Ben Wenberg and Charles Delmonico fell out and the dish disappeared from the menu. However, it was still requested by customers and was put back on the menu as Lobster Newberg (New from New York and Berg from Wenberg).
Later, chef Charles Ranhofer published a recipe for Lobster Newberg in his cookery book, "The Epicurean”. But similar recipes also appeared in French cookery books, as well as recipes with slightly different names such as Delmonico Lobster or Newberg Lobster. There are even references to the hotel Fauchere in Milford, Pennsylvania, built by a former chef from the Delmonico, as the origin of Lobster Newberg.
Although it is hard to disentangle the truth from legend, we do know that traditional Lobster Newberg is made with freshly cooked lobster, butter, cream and sherry. The sauce is seasoned with cayenne pepper and thickened with egg yolk and a splash of Cognac. It is usually served on toasted bread.
At the Cava Regulatory Board, we recommend discovering this dish in its traditional form and enjoying it with a splendid Cava de Paraje Calificado (more than 36 months).
Una cuerda o cabo fino
According to François Chartier, an expert in aromas and author of a study into the harmonious aromas of cava, the pairing of Lobster Newberg with a cava de Paraje Calificado (more than 36 months) allows you to enjoy the dish’s stand-out ingredients: lobster, butter, Cognac and cayenne pepper.