Rock shrimp derives its name from the rock-like hardness of its shell and can easily be mistaken for a miniature lobster tail. Rock shrimp, which tastes like a lobster, is actually a member of the shrimp family. The texture of the rock shrimp leans toward the lobster, while the palate appeal is more like a shrimp.
The rock shrimp (Sicyonia brevirostris) is a deep-water cousin of pink, brown and white shrimps. But due to its hard exoskeleton or shell, it did not have the large market and popularity as its cousins until a machine was invented that would split the tough shell and devein the shrimp. Now rock shrimp are widely available fresh or frozen, whole, headless, shell-on, peeled, round, split or deveined.
Similar to deep-sea lobster, rock shrimp live, spawn and are harvested in 120 to 240 feet of water. Harvesting is done with reinforced trawl nets throughout the year.