Mac and cheese is a year-round favorite, but add some fresh Maine lobster and it becomes a harbinger of summertime. “Our lobster macaroni and cheese symbolizes that the warm weather is near,” says Michele Giamattei, owner of The Barn Restaurant & Bar in Morris. “This is the perfect dish during spring and summer because lobster is in season starting in April, and people love lobster!”

The previous owner created the recipe, and now chef Dalton Hubbal, a graduate of Johnson & Wales, features it as both a main and side dish. “We wanted something different than just lobster rolls and fries,” Giamattei says. “Lobster goes with a lot of dishes, so we decided to go with something that everyone likes, like mac and cheese.”

Hubbal appreciates how the smooth mozzarella, bold cheddar and robust Parmesan give the dish a different taste and complement the slight sweetness of the lobster. “The blend of cheeses, the fresh lobster and the spices come together to give it a great flavor. It’s creamy, warm, filling comfort food that people enjoy.”

Lobster mac and cheese

Serves: 4

Prep and cook time: 20 minutes