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All Reader Reviews of...

Grand Central Oyster Bar & Restaurant

89 E. 42nd St., lower level, New York, NY, 10017
at Vanderbilt Ave.
212-490-6650

Avg. Rating

4
Food: 5
Service: 4
Décor: 6
"Not Recommended"

Average Reader Rating on a Scale of 10.

32% would go back.

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Great Experience

By ChuckPMi on 12/7/2008

  • Overall Rating: 10
  • Food: 10
  • Service: 10
  • Décor: 10
  • Yes, I would go back!

The food was excellent, the decor was magnificent, and the service was prompt and cordial for some Michiganders who had never been there before. Two of us had raw oysters. They were as good as any of us has had and there were no ill effects afterwards.

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93 out of 178 people found this review helpful.

Been going there for decades

By ahfurman on 11/15/2011

  • Overall Rating: 9
  • Food: 9
  • Service: 8
  • Décor: 8
  • Yes, I would go back!

We have gone to the Oyster Bar for decades. If you want quick, cheap stuff to put in your mouth and swallow, go elsewhere. If you are a oyster fan, this is a great place. My introduction to raw oysters happened 60 years ago. We have eaten oysters in Paris, Seattle, Ill de Rey in France, Boston, Bellingham in WA, Port Townsend in WA, Galveston in TX, New Orleans, Grand Isle, LA, Boston, Biloxi, MS (before the Whitecap was washed away) and even Forth Worth, Texas. Raw, pan fried, and other preparations. So my favorite lunch at the Oyster Bar is an appetizer of raw oysters, then pan fried oysters and cole slaw with a nice glass of white wine. I plan on being there for lunch December 7 and was just checking the hours they are open. Oops, salivating!!

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64 out of 126 people found this review helpful.

Had a really good dining experience

By questered on 6/23/2009

  • Overall Rating: 9
  • Food: 9
  • Service: 9
  • Décor: 9
  • Yes, I would go back!

The oyster house service was very good the day we attended (6-9-09). I had soft shell & my wife had salmon. She says it was the best salmon she has had. Soft shell was good too.

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110 out of 221 people found this review helpful.

Grand Central Classic

By martin_chamois on 5/7/2005

  • Overall Rating: 9
  • Food: 10
  • Service: 9
  • Décor: 8
  • Yes, I would go back!

Oyster Bar is a classic. After nearly 100 years in Grand Central it continues to shine bright. The seafood is classic American seafood. Not much has changed - all the better. Service is surprisingly good. The decor while not very modern fits the Grand Central environment and classic menu.

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333 out of 690 people found this review helpful.

GO FISHING IN GRAND CENTRAL

By adsong on 5/29/2003

  • Overall Rating: 8
  • Food: 9
  • Service: 6
  • Décor: 8
  • Yes, I would go back!

Touted as one of the more famous seafood places in New York, This large,indeed cavernous restaurant with its vaulted ceilings, has withstood the test of time(Except of a couple of years, when it closed due to a fire) with its very,very large menu (One page...but its a BIG One page) with daily specials, and a vast listing of wines. Sit at the bar, or at a table, and order their wonderful chowders,($4.50) or from their selections such as :Jumbo Gulf Shrimp Greek Salad - Served Chilled with Feta Cheese- $29.95 Grilled Ecuadorian Bigeye Tuna Steak - With Jalepeno Cilantro Cream - $24.95 Broiled Hawaiin Pompano Filet - With Chimichurri Sauce and Grilled Balsamic Summer Vegetables - $25.95 Saute'ed Imported Turbot Filet - With Plum Tomato and Herb Fondue, Black Truffles and Oil - $26.95 Maryland Crab Cakes with Baltimore Hot Sauce - $27.95 among the many choices (You can even order wonderful Florida Stone Crabs, when in season.) This place is not cheap, and it is a bit noisy due to its tiled decor,but this gives you a chance to whisper "Sweet Nothings" into your loved one's ears.The Oyster Bar MUST be experienced by New Yorker's as well as (Oh,No!!)Tourists as well.!!!

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283 out of 628 people found this review helpful.

It's a Classic. It's also Loud.

By amsterdam9 on 12/4/2002

  • Overall Rating: 8
  • Food: 9
  • Service: 8
  • Décor: 7
  • Yes, I would go back!

It's an institution and the oysters, other seafood dishes, and wine list -- the menu is huge -- make it a worthy one. If you can handle the noise, grab a table and soak up the atmosphere.

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226 out of 403 people found this review helpful.

Shuck 'em

By marieviljoen on 4/10/2003

  • Overall Rating: 7
  • Food: 7
  • Service: 6
  • Décor: 8
  • Yes, I would go back!

Eat the oysters. Lots of them. The house-smoked tenderloin of salmon on the deep blue plate with the black bread is remarkably fine. Sit at the bar and watch the oystermen work. They are grumpy and unfazed by whoever you are and if they smile at you your whole day flips over and grins. Try the clam chowder, but you may be sorry. The fish, in general, is OK, but not at those prices. The bouillabaisse is a disgrace. It's great place to bring a tourist-friend, a crew of friends, or to sit in quite alone - because there is so much to watch. The wine list is extensive, over-priced, and pretty good. If you eat wisely you leave happy, and aware that you live in New Yawk.

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304 out of 646 people found this review helpful.

Amazing Oysters!!

By PIXEE22 on 1/8/2003

  • Overall Rating: 7
  • Food: 7
  • Service: 8
  • Décor: 8
  • Yes, I would go back!

The service was great! And our server did not make us feel like idiots when we asked about the vast oyster selection. Definitely a spot to simply enjoy a variety of oysters and a cocktail. Lots of non-oyster options too!

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337 out of 661 people found this review helpful.

Terrible service and SLOW!

By Nicole673 on 9/13/2009

  • Overall Rating: 6
  • Food: 8
  • Service: 2
  • Décor: 7
  • No, I would not go back!

Took 4 out of town guests here last night. Arrived at 7:15 and by 8pm we didn't even have our appetizers. Our waiter was so rude. He would walk away while we were trying to order and go attend to another table. After we finally got our apps, he came back with a LONG printed listed of all the things they were out of. It was about half their menu (no lobsters, broiled scallops, grouper, sole, trout, bass, etc.). The waiter then said "well you know we are closed tomorrow so it is the end of our week". I'm sorry but isn't this Saturday night in Manhattan? We spoke to a manager mid-meal to try and sort out the slow service and how they mixed up about everything we ordered. Although he talked to us, nothing was offered in the way compensation. Also, they tacked on an automatic grat of 18% and there were only 5 of us. The only good thing I can say is my food tasted good, but I thought it was expensive for what I got.

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109 out of 247 people found this review helpful.

classic but not always worth it

By melissafield on 5/11/2005

  • Overall Rating: 6
  • Food: 6
  • Service: 5
  • Décor: 9
  • Yes, I would go back!

I loved this place... eating the raw oysters and pan roasts. Then I brought some out of town guests and had a surprisingly dissappointing experience. There is no kids menu. We ordered fish and chips for the kids at 18$ we expected a great dish but were disappointed, any pub would have given us the same dish for half the price. The smoked fish (salmon, trout and sturgeon) plate is under "main dishes" but comes with nothing more than a couple thin slices of bland smoked fish. No accompanying salad, side veg.. nothing, and for 23$! We were waited on by 5 different people and no one came to our table to ask how the food was after we were served. The creamed spinach was heavily over spiced with nutmeg, all at the table agreed. It's a classic place, but I'd stick to a couple raw oysters and a panroast, spend the rest of your money somewhere else.

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309 out of 693 people found this review helpful.

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