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Best Seattle Oyster Bar?

I'm looking for a place that has a variety of the freshest Pacific Northwest Oysters available to eat when I'm visiting Seattle next week. It would be a plus if the person shucking or serving is knowledgeable about the harvest. I know it's not the best time of the year but whatever is available is surely better than what we get in L.A.

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  1. Try those oysters at The Brooklyn. Wash them down with a flight of microbrews or a wine flight. Try the Kumomoto's if they have them!

    1. The counter at Jack's Fish Spot in the market.

      You're right, it's not the best time of year - but with our lovely Junuary weather you wouldn't know the summer solstice was next weekend.

      8 Replies
      1. re: terrier

        Ditto on Jacks.
        Emmet Watson's in the market for a dive type place.
        Shuckers in the Farimount for upscale.
        Boat St. has an oyster happy hour.

        Try Totten Inlet Virginicas if you find them - I am newly converveted.

        1. re: bluedog67

          Union usually has great Totten Virginicas although i think this time of year they are not quite as plump as during the winter. Had some of them at the Brooklyn the other day and they were disappointing.

          1. re: barleywino

            In general i would concur, but i had some at boat st about a week ago that were great, and bought some at Wild Salmon that were delicious. Taylor seems to be the best source.

              1. re: bluedog67

                Yeah, got some Totten Virginicas from the Taylor Shellfish guys last week, surprisingly big and plump for this time of year.

                (well, most of 'em anyway... a couple were somewhat disappointing)

              2. re: barleywino

                l got a rez at Union so I will do a compare and contrast. Thanks.

                1. re: eatseverything

                  I could be wrong (and hopefully I am), but I dined at Union last week and I didn't see oysters on the menu. Perhaps it's a seasonality thing, or perhaps I had already consumed too much sparkling wine... ;)

              3. re: bluedog67

                Thanks for giving me a Seattle Oyster Grail to seek.

            1. Elliot's has a great selection and great shuckers at the bar, always knowledgeable and friendly.
              I always have a great time when I'm there.

              3 Replies
              1. re: GreenYoshi

                you know, i forgot about elliots, but that is a great place for oysters, great service and has the view, etc. i think the remodel makes them the longest oyster bar in thew west or some random statistic. I would concur on that recommendation.

                1. re: GreenYoshi

                  I dislike Elliots for everything except oysters - if you go, I'd just go for oysters and drinks and skip eating lunch/dinner there. They have a huge selection of fresh oysters and do know what they're talking about. They have a progressive oyster happy hour M-F 3-6pm (starts really cheap and gets progressively more expensive throughout the afternoon) that might be worth checking out. The make a mignonette that is excellent and doesn't overpower the oysters.

                  1. re: akq

                    Get there at 3:00 and order-up several dozens. Of course, you will get whatever the house has surplus, which may limit your choices, but I've never had a bad one there and have found conversation with the shucker entertaining and maybe beneficial. They do know their oyster stuff there, though I can't speak to the rest of the menu. I don't remember having thought so much of the martini I selected for my mandatory beverage, but it may also be that it kicked my memory's a** to the curb and moved on...

                2. Ditto on the Brooklyn.
                  You might want to try Ray's Boathouse. They have a great happy hour and great views!

                  1. Spawning (from wikipedia):
                    A piece of folk wisdom concerning oysters is that they are best to eat in months containing the letter r, as illustrated by the famous phrase: "oysters 'r' in season." This is because oysters spawn in the warmer months, from roughly May to August in the Northern Hemisphere, and their flavor when eaten raw can be somewhat watery and bland during spawning season; additionally their meats are much reduced in size.

                    1. Elliotts has an Oyster Happy hour - which is the reason I go! I think they start at a quarter, and go up in price every half hour. It's so nice sitting on the deck, drinking wine, eating delicious (but cheap!) oysters and other happy hour appetizers.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: burritobelle

                        I usually go with a dozen of the "Happy Hour" oyster (which is usually something generic) and then a half dozen of whatever the shuckers recommend that day.

                      2. Whre are you visiting from, eats?

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: firecracker

                          When you live in LA as I do and have a passion for oysters, you have to go at least to San Francisco to get the great ones. I'm hoping that the TIV's in Seattle will be as memorable as the Irish Natives in Galway and the Belons in Paris I've been lucky enough to consume. Thanks to all the PNW Hounds for the above recommendations.

                          1. re: eatseverything

                            Can't comment on the European bivalves, but by way of comparison, I had some Tomales bay oysters when I was at a wedding in Marin Co. a couple weeks ago. The oysters were great off the BBQ (which appears to be a local specialty in Sonoma/marin) but raw I found them creamy and weird. There is no comparison to the Pac. NW varieties. The best I've ever had was the couple dozen Shigoku I bought in May from Taylor Shellfish's farm at Samish Bay in Bow, WA. They were like Kumamoto but larger and more briny. Amazing. Taylor advises they have just began cultivating this kind and they are only available from the farm. But Totten Virginicas, Kushis and Kumos are fantstic too, and even the standard Penn Cove in season are superior.

                            1. re: equinoise

                              i love those Tomales bay oysters! Tottens seem to be the closest we have around here to those..Hama Hama's can be good too

                        2. ai, I don't know if your still here, but in terms of great pac nwest oysters and knowledge, I've been going to Ama Ama for a bit now - they have $0.50 oysters at happy hour, their super fresh, their very northwest and the staff apparently just took a trip up to the oyster farms in the san juans / puget sound region for a day to learn about the oysters - so there you go for 'knowledgeable staff'. This place too is getting better and better...anyway, that's my two cents on some good local oysters (West Seattle)

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: jamesbra

                            Thanks for this tip! I will be visiting the family in WS this summer and will have to make Ama Ama a "must".