(212) 490-6650 | Reserve Onlinewww.oysterbarny.com
Mon - Fri: 11:30AM - 9:30PM
Sat: 12PM - 9:30PM
“Historic” is the word on this 1913-vintage seafood mecca in Grand Central’s lower level serving “divine” bivalves and “classic” pan roasts in a “glorious” setting outfitted with arched tile ceilings, long counters and an “old-school” rear saloon; surveyors find the smaller-scale Park Slope replica rather “underwhelming” in comparison, though the menu is as “pricey” as the mother ship.
The history is rich and the vaulted tile ceilings high at this quintessential New York eatery, the crown jewel of Grand Central's lower-level dining concourse. Opened in 1913, the same year as the terminal itself, the Oyster Bar has undergone some cosmetic changes over the years, but it still offers a rare glimpse into the city's bygone Beaux-Arts golden age (with a lingering residue of Gordon-Gekko '80s). Grab a seat at the winding, cafeteria-style counter in the main room or head through the swinging doors to the Saloon Room bar in back for a cozier, clubbier experience.
The menu offers a deep roster of seafood options, including every imaginable bivalve, crustacean, and whole fish, served every which way—raw, steamed, fried, baked, or grilled—with all the accompaniments. Whole Maine lobsters, delivered daily, free swim until your order is placed. And the bloody Mary oyster shooters are always ready when you are. The popcorn shrimp here is among the best in the city and is perhaps best enjoyed over an after-work martini at the bar. They even give you a personal mini-shaker for the overflow, which is just the kind of old-school touch that's won the Oyster Bar so many loyal disciples.
Despite its less-than-fashionable address inside a major transportation hub, the Oyster Bar is a destination in and of itself, and reservations are highly recommended, especially at lunchtime and during the after-work crush. For the complete experience, head upstairs after your meal for a drink at Grand Central's storied Campbell Apartment, a fully-restored jewel box of a bar that serves cocktails authentic enough to satisfy anyone's inner Don Draper.
4,5,6; 7; S to Grand Central
What to tell a cabbie
Take me to Grand Central.
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