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15 Stellar Spots for Raw Bar in NYC

Few things are as refreshing and lavish as a seafood plateaux

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The splendor of a raw bar tower isn’t an everyday (or even every month) sort of experience for most, but it’s one of the best, undeniably luxurious-feeling ways to eat seafood. These New York City restaurants are doing it up really right, from various New England-style fish shacks to an iconic Soho brasserie, to the dining offshoot of an excellent fish market in Chelsea. Ahead, 15 top-notch picks for a raw bar feast.

Note: This map is an updated version of one originally published in 2018.

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The name of this Hamilton Heights joint from Angel’s Share alums Shigefumi Kabashima and Tetsuo Hasegaw stands for ramen, oysters, kitchen, and cocktails, which describes the menu’s scope. As for the oysters, there are seven varieties to choose from, as well as raw clams.  The Tokyo-inspired cocktail menu was crafted by co-bartender Joji Watanabe, a vet of the Experimental Cocktail Club.

ROKC
ROKC
ROKC [Official]

The Mermaid Inn

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This nautical seafood spot serves a raw bar menu that includes a well-priced $72 Grand Platter, complete with oysters, clams, tuna crudo, shrimp cocktail, and half a chilled lobster. The Baby Grand Platter is less than half the price and comes with the former three items. A la carte options for all of the platter components are available, too, to mix and match with seafood-focused small plates and entrees, such as seared calamari, roasted skate, and crab cakes. It’s a solid date-night choice, and there’s substantial sidewalk seating. Other locations exist in the East and Greenwich Villages, and there’s a daily happy hour with $1.25 oysters and $8.50 cocktails.

Grand Central Oyster Bar & Restaurant

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This NYC icon has been serving up fresh seafood in a memorable space since 1913, and remains one of the best places to eat in Midtown East. On the raw bar end, there’s a $37.55 shellfish platter, with eight oysters, two clams, two jumbo shrimp, and three mussel; take it up a notch by adding lobster, priced at $53.05 for half or $68.55 for the whole crustacean. Or, select from nearly two dozen types of oysters available a la carte, plus littleneck, top neck, and cherrystone clams. The subterranean space inside Grand Central Terminal is nestled under a soaring arched and tiled ceiling, and the environs, complete with massive U-shaped counter seating perfect for dining solo, is so special that the restaurant nabbed the Design Icon Award at at the James Beard Awards in 2017.

Grand Central Oyster Bar
Grand Central Oyster Bar
Nick Solares/Eater

The NoMad Restaurant

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The grand plateau at this plush American restaurant from Daniel Humm and Will Guidara might sound like a classic raw bar presentation, but don’t expect the standard breadth of seafood served raw and on various tiers. Instead, a couple of creative crudo, ceviche, or tartare creations arrive on ice, which might feature scallop, hamachi, oyster, or sea urchin.

Cull & Pistol Oyster Bar

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This Chelsea spot is the restaurant offshoot of fishmonger the Lobster Place in Chelsea Market, which equates to extremely fresh shellfish including clams, oysters, scallops, crab claws, and shrimp. The space is snug and modern, with the raw bar selection prominently displayed on ice, and lots of two-tops and barstool seating.

Cull & Pistol Oyster Bar
Cull & Pistol Oyster Bar
Cull & Pistol Oyster Bar [Official]

Mary's Fish Camp

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This pint-sized space has been serving up well-received seafood since 2000. Mary Redding, a partner at nearby Pearl Oyster bar — another excellent option for raw bar — opened up the charming West Village seafood joint. One of the city’s topnotch places for finding a New England fish shack feel in NYC, the raw bar menu changes often with options displayed on a chalkboard. Complement raw seafood with a memorable fresh sardine banh mi, a grilled shrimp burger spiked with sambal lime aioli and daikon slaw, and a fried clam roll spiffed up with celery root remoulade. Long waits are common at dinnertime, so opt for lunch or brunch.

Jeffrey's Grocery

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A mainstay in restaurateur Gabriel Stulman’s roster of charming West Village neighborhood spots, Jeffrey’s Grocery has a solid raw bar selection incorporated into the menu. Le Royale includes a dozen oysters; six clams, oysters, shrimp each; half a lobster; half a pound of king crab legs; and marinated mussels, all for $100. A larger version, dubbed Le Jeffrey, offers larger portions of the above, plus a crudo and diver scallop for $135.

Jeffrey’s Grocery
Jeffrey’s Grocery
Jeffrey’s Grocery [Official]

Greenpoint Fish & Lobster Co.

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This raw bar-seafood market mashup in Greenpoint carries super-fresh raw oysters, scallops, sea urchin, and crudos. Cooked options include fish chowder, fish tacos, lobster rolls, and more. The white-tiled space with a marble bar feels clean and airy, with hi-tops and bar seats, the latter of which afford prime views of the shucking in action. Oyster happy hour goes down seven days a week (with a shorter timeframe on weekends), with certain oysters and clams priced at $1.50 apiece, plus beer and wine deals.

Greenpoint Fish & Lobster Co.
Greenpoint Fish & Lobster Co.
Greenpoint Fish & Lobster Co. [Official]

Balthazar

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This Keith McNally institution opened in 1997 and has had a considerable impact on the city’s dining landscape. The sprawling French brasserie is filled with his signature massive distressed mirrors, dark wood, and red banquettes. It’s a uniformly excellent menu, but the two plateau options, sporting tiers of impeccable shellfish, are available for $120 or $170. It’ll taste even better when eaten as a leisurely weekday meal.

Balthazar
Balthazar
Balthazar [Official]

Grand Banks

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This spiffy Sherman Zwicker sailboat docked seasonally on Tribeca’s Pier 25 is decked out in white- and yellow-striped awnings and truly lovely views, particularly on the south side of the boat. Choose from over half a dozen oyster varieties, plus sea bream ceviche and cooked options like a lobster roll or caviar-topped latke. Beyond the jaunty Tribeca vessel, the Grand Banks team opened up two more seafood-centric establishments in 2017: Pilot, an oyster joint housed on a boat near Brooklyn Bridge Park, and an expansive raw bar restaurant on Governor’s Island, dubbed Island Oyster.

Dozens of people are seated at tables and chairs on the hull of a boat
Grand Banks
Doug Lyle Thompson via Grand Banks

Maison Premiere

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Known for its oyster selection, this handsome and acclaimed cocktail bar serves up renowned raw bar assortments. Three plateau sizes are offered: La Petite Maison is $72, La Maison is $98, and La Grande is $195, and include various combinations of oysters, lobster, crab, shrimp, and clams, with additional treats like scallop and sea urchin on the larger two sizes.

A bartender behind the bar at Maison Premiere
Maison Premiere
Daniel Krieger/Eater

Walter's

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This neighborhood joint offers a tightly edited raw bar selection, with oysters, clams, and shrimp cocktail available a la carte, and two platters to choose from. The $100 Frazier option is a chef’s assortment, while the smaller Whitman version includes oysters, clams, and shrimp cocktail for $55. Plus, in the back of Walter’s is modern Japanese izakaya Karasu, which also serves raw dishes like oysters served with umeboshi mignonette and yuzu kosho mignonette, or raw lobster and scallop dressed with lemon oil and yuzu kosho.

Grand Army

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The focus is placed equally on cocktails and raw bar delicacies at this Boerum Hill corner place, created by an experienced team (Mile End, Black Seed, Rucola). The raw bar offerings include The Plaza platter, priced at $90, which comes with 18 oysters plus shrimp, clams, and ceviche, while The Grand Army option for $120 includes 24 oysters along with shrimp, clams, ceviche, and king crab leg; either should definitely be paired with one of the top-notch cocktails or a glass of orange wine. This spot is also known for its accoutrements, which are all made in-house and served in colorful tinctures.

Grand Army
Grand Army
Grand Army [Official]

Littleneck

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At this stylish seafood spot in Gowanus, expect gussied-up takes on Northeastern (and beyond) clam-shack classics. The raw bar menu is pretty affordable for the genre, and includes a lavish tower for $125, with 24 oysters, a dozen clams, six shrimp, half of a chilled lobster, and salmon crudo; smaller versions go for $75 or $40. Besides full-fledged fish feasts, this is a great option for a drink and some oysters post-work, too. There’s a cafe offshoot in Greenpoint, too. Note: cash only.

Littleneck
Littleneck
Littleneck [Official]

Randazzo's Clam Bar

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Opened in 1932, this family-run Sheepshead Bay old-timer is one of the city’s more memorable seafood experiences. While the Littleneck or Cherry Stone bivalves are available baked and steamed, order them up raw for the freshest version of the place’s namesake shellfish type. Also popular: the fried calamari, an order of which tends to appear on most tables.

Randazzo’s Clam Bar
Randazzo’s Clam Bar
Robert Sietsema/Eater

ROKC

The name of this Hamilton Heights joint from Angel’s Share alums Shigefumi Kabashima and Tetsuo Hasegaw stands for ramen, oysters, kitchen, and cocktails, which describes the menu’s scope. As for the oysters, there are seven varieties to choose from, as well as raw clams.  The Tokyo-inspired cocktail menu was crafted by co-bartender Joji Watanabe, a vet of the Experimental Cocktail Club.

ROKC
ROKC
ROKC [Official]

The Mermaid Inn

This nautical seafood spot serves a raw bar menu that includes a well-priced $72 Grand Platter, complete with oysters, clams, tuna crudo, shrimp cocktail, and half a chilled lobster. The Baby Grand Platter is less than half the price and comes with the former three items. A la carte options for all of the platter components are available, too, to mix and match with seafood-focused small plates and entrees, such as seared calamari, roasted skate, and crab cakes. It’s a solid date-night choice, and there’s substantial sidewalk seating. Other locations exist in the East and Greenwich Villages, and there’s a daily happy hour with $1.25 oysters and $8.50 cocktails.

Grand Central Oyster Bar & Restaurant

This NYC icon has been serving up fresh seafood in a memorable space since 1913, and remains one of the best places to eat in Midtown East. On the raw bar end, there’s a $37.55 shellfish platter, with eight oysters, two clams, two jumbo shrimp, and three mussel; take it up a notch by adding lobster, priced at $53.05 for half or $68.55 for the whole crustacean. Or, select from nearly two dozen types of oysters available a la carte, plus littleneck, top neck, and cherrystone clams. The subterranean space inside Grand Central Terminal is nestled under a soaring arched and tiled ceiling, and the environs, complete with massive U-shaped counter seating perfect for dining solo, is so special that the restaurant nabbed the Design Icon Award at at the James Beard Awards in 2017.

Grand Central Oyster Bar
Grand Central Oyster Bar
Nick Solares/Eater

The NoMad Restaurant

The grand plateau at this plush American restaurant from Daniel Humm and Will Guidara might sound like a classic raw bar presentation, but don’t expect the standard breadth of seafood served raw and on various tiers. Instead, a couple of creative crudo, ceviche, or tartare creations arrive on ice, which might feature scallop, hamachi, oyster, or sea urchin.

Cull & Pistol Oyster Bar

This Chelsea spot is the restaurant offshoot of fishmonger the Lobster Place in Chelsea Market, which equates to extremely fresh shellfish including clams, oysters, scallops, crab claws, and shrimp. The space is snug and modern, with the raw bar selection prominently displayed on ice, and lots of two-tops and barstool seating.

Cull & Pistol Oyster Bar
Cull & Pistol Oyster Bar
Cull & Pistol Oyster Bar [Official]

Mary's Fish Camp

This pint-sized space has been serving up well-received seafood since 2000. Mary Redding, a partner at nearby Pearl Oyster bar — another excellent option for raw bar — opened up the charming West Village seafood joint. One of the city’s topnotch places for finding a New England fish shack feel in NYC, the raw bar menu changes often with options displayed on a chalkboard. Complement raw seafood with a memorable fresh sardine banh mi, a grilled shrimp burger spiked with sambal lime aioli and daikon slaw, and a fried clam roll spiffed up with celery root remoulade. Long waits are common at dinnertime, so opt for lunch or brunch.

Jeffrey's Grocery

A mainstay in restaurateur Gabriel Stulman’s roster of charming West Village neighborhood spots, Jeffrey’s Grocery has a solid raw bar selection incorporated into the menu. Le Royale includes a dozen oysters; six clams, oysters, shrimp each; half a lobster; half a pound of king crab legs; and marinated mussels, all for $100. A larger version, dubbed Le Jeffrey, offers larger portions of the above, plus a crudo and diver scallop for $135.

Jeffrey’s Grocery
Jeffrey’s Grocery
Jeffrey’s Grocery [Official]

Greenpoint Fish & Lobster Co.

This raw bar-seafood market mashup in Greenpoint carries super-fresh raw oysters, scallops, sea urchin, and crudos. Cooked options include fish chowder, fish tacos, lobster rolls, and more. The white-tiled space with a marble bar feels clean and airy, with hi-tops and bar seats, the latter of which afford prime views of the shucking in action. Oyster happy hour goes down seven days a week (with a shorter timeframe on weekends), with certain oysters and clams priced at $1.50 apiece, plus beer and wine deals.

Greenpoint Fish & Lobster Co.
Greenpoint Fish & Lobster Co.
Greenpoint Fish & Lobster Co. [Official]

Balthazar

This Keith McNally institution opened in 1997 and has had a considerable impact on the city’s dining landscape. The sprawling French brasserie is filled with his signature massive distressed mirrors, dark wood, and red banquettes. It’s a uniformly excellent menu, but the two plateau options, sporting tiers of impeccable shellfish, are available for $120 or $170. It’ll taste even better when eaten as a leisurely weekday meal.

Balthazar
Balthazar
Balthazar [Official]

Grand Banks

This spiffy Sherman Zwicker sailboat docked seasonally on Tribeca’s Pier 25 is decked out in white- and yellow-striped awnings and truly lovely views, particularly on the south side of the boat. Choose from over half a dozen oyster varieties, plus sea bream ceviche and cooked options like a lobster roll or caviar-topped latke. Beyond the jaunty Tribeca vessel, the Grand Banks team opened up two more seafood-centric establishments in 2017: Pilot, an oyster joint housed on a boat near Brooklyn Bridge Park, and an expansive raw bar restaurant on Governor’s Island, dubbed Island Oyster.

Dozens of people are seated at tables and chairs on the hull of a boat
Grand Banks
Doug Lyle Thompson via Grand Banks

Maison Premiere

Known for its oyster selection, this handsome and acclaimed cocktail bar serves up renowned raw bar assortments. Three plateau sizes are offered: La Petite Maison is $72, La Maison is $98, and La Grande is $195, and include various combinations of oysters, lobster, crab, shrimp, and clams, with additional treats like scallop and sea urchin on the larger two sizes.

A bartender behind the bar at Maison Premiere
Maison Premiere
Daniel Krieger/Eater

Walter's

This neighborhood joint offers a tightly edited raw bar selection, with oysters, clams, and shrimp cocktail available a la carte, and two platters to choose from. The $100 Frazier option is a chef’s assortment, while the smaller Whitman version includes oysters, clams, and shrimp cocktail for $55. Plus, in the back of Walter’s is modern Japanese izakaya Karasu, which also serves raw dishes like oysters served with umeboshi mignonette and yuzu kosho mignonette, or raw lobster and scallop dressed with lemon oil and yuzu kosho.

Grand Army

The focus is placed equally on cocktails and raw bar delicacies at this Boerum Hill corner place, created by an experienced team (Mile End, Black Seed, Rucola). The raw bar offerings include The Plaza platter, priced at $90, which comes with 18 oysters plus shrimp, clams, and ceviche, while The Grand Army option for $120 includes 24 oysters along with shrimp, clams, ceviche, and king crab leg; either should definitely be paired with one of the top-notch cocktails or a glass of orange wine. This spot is also known for its accoutrements, which are all made in-house and served in colorful tinctures.

Grand Army
Grand Army
Grand Army [Official]

Littleneck

At this stylish seafood spot in Gowanus, expect gussied-up takes on Northeastern (and beyond) clam-shack classics. The raw bar menu is pretty affordable for the genre, and includes a lavish tower for $125, with 24 oysters, a dozen clams, six shrimp, half of a chilled lobster, and salmon crudo; smaller versions go for $75 or $40. Besides full-fledged fish feasts, this is a great option for a drink and some oysters post-work, too. There’s a cafe offshoot in Greenpoint, too. Note: cash only.

Littleneck
Littleneck
Littleneck [Official]

Randazzo's Clam Bar

Opened in 1932, this family-run Sheepshead Bay old-timer is one of the city’s more memorable seafood experiences. While the Littleneck or Cherry Stone bivalves are available baked and steamed, order them up raw for the freshest version of the place’s namesake shellfish type. Also popular: the fried calamari, an order of which tends to appear on most tables.

Randazzo’s Clam Bar
Randazzo’s Clam Bar
Robert Sietsema/Eater

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