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good places in MSP for raw oysters

Is there any place I can trust in Minneapolis for a good raw oyster? I recently had some in Boston that were to die for.

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  1. Given the phrasing of the question, perhaps start with the tried-and-true:

    Coastal Seafoods, if you're buying them to serve at home.

    Oceanaire Seafood Room, if you're making an occasion of it.

    Sea Salt Eatery, although it's closed for the season.

    Sea Salt Eatery
    4801 Minnehaha Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55417

    Coastal Seafoods
    74 Snelling Ave S, St Paul, MN 55105

    Oceanaire Seafood Room
    1300 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, MN 55403

    Coastal Seafoods
    2330 Minnehaha Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55404

    1. In no particular order (as I'm not an oyster authority of any kind):

      McCormick & Schmick's

      When they're open, Sea Salt Eatery has them as well. (April - November)

      (Looks like KTFoley and I were typing at the same time except she's thoughtful enough to provide the place links)

      2 Replies
      1. re: MSPD

        I;m pretty sure Barbette has them on their menu, but I have never tried them there, so can't comment on how they are. Tis the season for oysters though!

        1. re: autmommy

          Adding link

          1600 W Lake St, Minneapolis, MN 55408

      2. Barbette has oysters on both their regular and happy hour menus.

        Salut has a raw bar featuring a variety of oysters which change based on availability:

        1. Are you asking where to purchase for home consumption or restaurants? I think everyone has already covered the biggies

          Oceanaire for sure, best selection.
          Stella's has had great fresh hama hama's and other west coast varieties. Not a fan of much else there though.
          Lurcat generally has 3 or 4 varieties per night, at least one east coast variety
          Origami, Nami, several other sushi places I would trust
          Vincent almost always has oysters on the menu
          The raw bar at Salut has been consistant

          Places where oysters are on the menu occasionally: Alma, Fugaise, Cosmos, Cucina, I know I am forgetting some. I'll tell you I miss the Kumamoto oysters @ Auriga, they had a little micro shaved thing on top that was perfect.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Foureyes137

            I mean restaurants. This rookie chowhound definitely doesn't prepare any meals at home.

          2. I've never been there, so I can't vouch for them, but I just noticed that Jax Cafe has them on the menu: http://www.jaxcafe.com/_dnld/JaxDinne...


            1. Bluepoint in Wayzata has my favorite presentation with fresh grated horseradish for mix your own cocktail sauce. Nice happy hour specials, but crowded tiny bar area.

              1. I had raw oysters at Pancho Villa on Eat Street. The presentation was very simple - a small slice of avocado on each oyster and lime wedges on the side. Oysters tasted just right - like the sea without fishiness.

                1. I've had some excellent oysters at Azia.

                  1. I love Salut in Edina. It's got a cosmopolitan atmosphere and amazing food.
                    Their raspberry points are lovely with a glass of champagne,

                    1. Meritage Oyster Bar is now open in St. Paul in the Hamm Building. I will be there Friday to try it out.

                      410 Saint Peter St, Saint Paul, MN 55102

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: chelle

                        I was just going to mention Meritage! Has anyone been to the Raw Bar there yet? I was there a few weeks ago for the Sunday Prix Fixe meal, and had the bloody mary oyster shooter, but no other oysters.

                        410 Saint Peter St, Saint Paul, MN 55102

                        1. re: linfr21

                          I've not actually consumed the oysters there yet as I'm not really an oyster person, but Hubby and I were there last week after they reopened and the new bar space is gorgeous and provides some much needed extra space. The couple at the table next to us had several rounds of oysters and seemed to really enjoy them.

                          1. re: linfr21

                            Yes, The Oysters are great and the largest selection in town. The rest of the food is terrific as well. Try the Chicken, Duck and Cassolet

                        2. My husband and I just visited Meritage tonight just to have their raw oysters. We just moved back to MN from the east coast recently and seafood is one of those things we miss the most, especially oysters.
                          I have to say that I was not impressed. For one, I'm just not into pretentiousness. It's about the food, not how people look while eating it. Meritage is the sort of place where the snooty host gives you the once over before he greets you. C'mon dude, I make more money than you and I'm not judging you lack of skill shuffling menus so quit it with the stink eye. We ordered an assortment of different species of raw oysters. My husband tried to order a Miller Lite and the waitress looked at him like he was speaking a foreign language. That made me giggle. The oysters arrived and they were all farm raised and lacking flavor. They weren't horrible but I didn't, "Taste the sea" when I ate any of them. Just bland and therefore disappointing. Also, having recently moved from the east coast and earnestly missing the good old oyster bars where real people go to eat real oysters, from the ocean...it was a bummer to have to pay $60 bucks for 14 oysters and 2 beers, (Not Miller Lite. LOL) I would gladly have paid that much though if they had been good.

                          Also, for the record. We recently ate at Pescara in Rochester. I know it's outside of MSP but the food was amazing and they had the best raw oysters I've had since I was actually sitting on the Chesapeake Bay eating them.

                          410 Saint Peter St, Saint Paul, MN 55102

                          1. We went to Meritage about a week ago and sampled few oysters recommended by our waitress and thought they were delicious and fresh! I've eaten oysters in other parts of the country and thought they were sweet and tasted like the ocean so maybe it was a bad night? I do agree they are expensive here compared to coastal cities.

                            i've been to Meritage several times in the last few months and have found the service to be kind.

                            410 Saint Peter St, Saint Paul, MN 55102

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: mn_praline

                              I've found the service at Meritage to be pretty all over the map, actually. Snooty, yes. Friendly, yes. Overly-friendly/over-the-top-joke-cracky to the point where you want to pull the server aside and say, "Lady, we promise to tip you. You don't need to put on a little vaudeville performance for us", yes. Mostly friendly and professional, but not always.


                              410 Saint Peter St, Saint Paul, MN 55102

                            2. I have loved the oysters at Meritage for a long time now -- they are superb. Last year I had oysters in Stockholm, Amsterdam, San Francisco and Boston. The oysters at Meritage were as good or better. They have increased the selection now that the bar is open. I'm not in love with the really big ones -- the medium adn small sizes are as good as ever. Also the shrimp cocktail is superb.

                              I've mostly found the servers at Meritage to be excellent -- hard-working and knowledgeable. The owners are awesome and very accessible.

                              410 Saint Peter St, Saint Paul, MN 55102

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: Michael Florey

                                I agree, the Chef Russell Klein hovers over the room. He's very accessible and always comes to our table to check on how we are enjoying our meal. May think the waitstaff is snooty, but would you rather have someone greet you with "How's you'se guys doing tonight?", or have a server with a great knowledge of the food and menu. I'll live with a bit of snoot to have a knowledgable server