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Grand Central Oyster Bar - New York, NY - Reviews page 1 - Judysbook

Grand Central Oyster Bar

89 E 42nd St (at at Vanderbilt Ave.)
New York, NY 10017
(212) 490-6650
Incorrect info? Correct your listing


Grand Central Oyster Bar - New York, NY
Grand Central Oyster Bar - New York, NY
Grand Central Oyster Bar - New York, NY
Grand Central Oyster Bar - New York, NY
Grand Central Oyster Bar - New York, NY
Grand Central Oyster Bar - New York, NY
Grand Central Oyster Bar - New York, NY
Grand Central Oyster Bar - New York, NY
Grand Central Oyster Bar - New York, NY


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...the best New England clam chowder in the City, hands down. The chowder never changes and never varies - it is always fresh and delicious! A+ Have it at the counter with oyster ...


I used to love this place but something's gone wrong over the yrs. Maybe the location and tourist cache will be enough to keep it going forever which is probably a big part of t...

New Enland clam chowder paradise... 10/10/2010

...the best New England clam chowder in the City, hands down. The chowder never changes and never varies - it is always fresh and delicious! A+ Have it at the counter with oyster crackers and a glass of cold tea. Heaven for less than 10 bucks... more

Fried Oysters were a disgrace to the establishment's name 9/10/2010

I have been a loyal customer for almost ten years, but tonight made me question my loyalty. After ordering my usual fried oyster platter, I was shocked to be presented with a few whole oysters and about two dozen tiny fried bits that were dredged up from the bottom of the fryer. When I take guests from out of town here, I don't expect a huge pile of oysters, but the ones I receive I expect to be of high quality -- medium sized and plump. Tonight was a disappointment. To the credit of our server, he did agree to take the charge off our bill after I sent the plate back. Still, the next time I want to treat my guests to a top-notch New-York fried-oyster experience, I will look elsewhere... sadly. more

Great Oysters! 7/24/2010

Always sit in the back of GCOB by the bar, otherwise you will be overrun by tourists. \r \r Still a NYC landmark and still the best oysters that you can find without travelling to the west coast, but over the years the waitstaff quality has dropped - they are less knowledgeable about the oysters, more into rushing you out than caring about your experience and not as cordial. \r \r However, the food still holds up to what it was and the underground speakeasy feeling exists. \r \r I am not a beer drinker, but when I do drink it's always dark.\r \r Highly recommend: Turbo Dog Dark Ale with your oysters and ipswich clams. Pros: Oyster Selection, Decor, Ipswich Clams Cons: Waitstaff, Tourists more

no longer a landmark 5/9/2010

I used to love this place but something's gone wrong over the yrs. Maybe the location and tourist cache will be enough to keep it going forever which is probably a big part of the problem. The food is no longer great and the service even much less so. skip it, go elsewhere Pros: history Cons: shadow of its former self more

Get the Shrimp Pan Roast! 2/21/2010

Did a great walking tour of Grand Central Terminal (we love you, Justin Ferate!) and ended up smack-dab in... more

best oysters 2/11/2010

I love going to this place with my mom. We both are big fans of seafood and they have a great selection here. I especially love their oysters and the fact that they have such a great variety of oysters to choose from!! Pros: seafood is delicious! Cons: long wait more

Humiliating Experience 12/30/2008

I've been going to the Oyster Bar for 10+ years and have never had an experience so bad or humiliating as the one I had today at lunch. After waiting 45 minutes for our food, we got 1 of the 2 dozen oysters we ordered and were missing the panroast. The oysters we did get were an incorrect order and looked as if they had been sitting out open for quite a while. When I complained I was met with a resounding ""Aaawwww"" from the entire bar staff. Upon complaining to the management they nitpicked our check and were inept at resolving or addressing the problem. Sadly I feel as though this is a NY Classic in name only anymore and in all my years of eating in NY have never had an entire waitstaff humiliate me in such a way. This ranks in the top two worst dining experiences I've ever had in NY. I would not recommend this restaurant to anyone. more

Just Great 11/8/2008

a ny classic - you'll never go wrong here. a bit more on the formal side but very very tasty. i've had several seafood dishes here, all of which were top notch. will have to revisit to provide more specific commentary. Pros: food,service more

Excellent... 10/14/2008

I am in love with this place! We came last week and mixed green salag with beefsteak tomato- - SUPER GOOD! You have to get it when you go! I had the broiled Florida red grouper filet with\r peekytoe crabm and pancetta eat wine sauce, 5 grain rice and tiramisu and it was AMAZING! My friend had the lobster and it was just as good (but mine was better). I cannot wait to come back!\r Pros: food,staff,business dinning more

yUMMYYY 8/11/2008

moderately hung over on a sunday? Well go somewhere else, can't help you. I want the window seat at Grand Central ! You can't have it. Sitting here with the friendly staff, yummy crab, and wine just made my day. more

Worst dining experience ever. 6/30/2008

Dreadful experience. One appetizer did not appear. Mains arrived cold with accompanying dishes (spinach, french fries). We all had ordered fillets of various fish. told the waiter they were cold. He took them away and left the spinach and french fries on the table, presumably to get as cold as the fish was. Back came the main courses. Same pieces of fish that were now hot but so over-cooked they where inedible. Accompanying dishes were by now stone cold. Sent them back to the kitchen. \r We decided then to complain to the management who it turned out basically couldn't care. Called for the bill which came up with all charges included. Couldn't believe this. Couldn't wait to get out of the place.\r NYC has sooooo much better to offer than this sad place\r \r Pros: Being able to leave the place Cons: The food, the price, the service more


In NY fresh fish is nothing special. What this place does with it is a crime. The Oyster Bar is a NY institution but sadly its reputation is all based on the past. Today the place is an over-rated, over priced tourist trap. Poor service on top of the poor quality of the food adds insult on top of injury. Hopefully the place will shape up one day and become the treasure it once was. For now though leave it as buried treasure. Cons: poor chefs and even poorer service more


HORRIBLE EXPERIENCE - HORRIBLE STAFF - DISGUSTING FOOD OTHER THAN THE OYSTERS......\r STAFF: the staff is part of the union and believe they are untouchable - and it shows..\r 1/ after ordering some wine by the glass the waiter didn't return within 10 minutes...we tried to ask the other waiter who at first pretended he did not hear us \r we then waived our arms to see how far this idiot will go to ignore us\r he then could not get away, we asked him about our drinks he didn't even answer but point out with his finger that the other guy was the waiter\r 2/ as those idiots were rushing everyone to go home - they dumped our main courses while we were finishing up the oysters\r 3/ sole!!!!!!!!!!!! badly prepared - vegetables - lol - disgusting\r 4/ the wine - besides the fact that we had to serve ourselves our own $200 wine bottle....the busboy another idiot came and took the bottle from our table while 10% of the wine still remained....i had to yelled at him to bring it back....he look at me like he was ready to start a fight...idiot\r 5/ then the desserts....we had to ask twice to see the desserts...waiters told us he will see if we can still order (it was 10 pm)...pecan pie,chocolate mousse passed\r 6/ waiter rushes and bring the check...we leave $20 on a $400 check.....wanted to leave $0....waiter came to ask why?....idiot\r Manager....was half asleep...never walk in the dining room....we didn't bother to complain to him...dude is close to retirement and just like all of them does not give a dam Pros: the worst more

Horrible... 3/11/2008

My wife and I decided to pop in on a Friday night a couple of weeks ago since we were in Grand Central Station and had nothing planned for the evening. We strolled in and were seated immediately, but unfortunately the dining experience went downhill from there. We sat there for who knew how long before someone even bothered to offer to get us some water. While we sat waiting for service we went through the menu and it looked promising enough with probably the biggest selection of oysters I have ever seen. We ended up order probably three dozen oysters from the raw bar as well as an appetizer and a fish entree from the kitchen. My wife LOVES oysters, so I was shocked when I saw her gag on a couple of pieces. I can't remember exactly which ones they were, but they were terrible and she had to actually sp*t them out. The cooked entree was edible, but the fish was totally void of any flavor. We quickly finished up and asked for the check, paid and made a promise to ourselves to never dine there again ever.\r \r If not for the prime location attracting the tourists (and the bored locals), this restaurant would have closed up shop ages ago. Pros: Location Cons: Food... need I say more? more

Nice location, Ho-Hum everything else 2/4/2008

Imagine this: A tourist trap that also has a loyal local following. That's how I'd size up this place. For the money, I'd really rate this place one star. Pros: Location, Ambience Cons: Poor service, ho-hum food, expensive more

LOUD & Average Food 1/8/2008

I know this place is somewhat of a New York favorite but, honestly I thought it was average. I had the fried oysters, fried clam strips and chowder. The chowder was good but, have had comparable and the oysters nd clam strips were a bit...""overfried"" for me. The arching, cavernous space would have been beautiful and it was something I was excited about, except for the fact that it becomes a giant tuning fork, echoing sound after sound through it's underground cavernous space. Some might like it but the food and the fact that it's just too loud in there, don't do it for me. more

A Big Disappointment 12/30/2007

This was the first real disappointment I?ve ever had in Manhattan. The mediocre food and poor service was not worth the 40 minute wait at lunch.\r The real deal-breaker was that the wait staff was just too busy to: even finish taking our order without my walking over to his station to remind him; bring us some crackers or bread before the meal for a young nephew with low blood-sugar; bring our entrees all at one time (no apology or acknowledgement); bring my oyster appetizer until after my entree was served; or to describe the selection of oysters in my appetizer when it finally arrived as he promised he would do. Because service had been so poor up to that point, I asked the waiter to remove the entree until he served me the appetizer. He was belligerent and walked away while I was still talking to him. \r As for the food, the other folks at my table generally said, it was 'OK', but not anything special.\r The experience was something I would have expected at a bus station, but not Grand Central Station. Pros: Ambience Cons: Poor Service. Mediocre food. Long wait. more

Outsanding Seafood Very Expensive 11/6/2007

I really enjoy this place .It does have some small short commings once in a while ( very busy,very loud) .The food is great and you do pay alot for it. If you want to wolf down raw oysters and clams, then get ready to do major damage to your wallet .I now live in the northwest (oregon) and can get the same food for about 1/3 the cost in our seafood houses . The menue at the Oyster Bar is hard to beat . Try it once and see what you think . Pros: Great Seafood Cons: Spendy more

Try it just to say, ""you've been there and done that."" 10/16/2007

A good friend of mine was moving out to SF so I decided that the Grand Central Oyster Bar would be a good send off restaurant. It was a place where we had always talked about trying but never did.\r I had my doubts after reading so many unflattering reviews but decided to forge ahead anyway.\r We were fifteen minutes late for a 7pm reservation on a very crowded Monday evening but we were luckily seated promptly. The raw bar offerings are excellent. Very tasty. Fried osyers are delicious too.\r The actual entrees? A tad on the pricy side for mediocre (and possibly frozen not fresh) seafood. \r My friend had very sandy and dry scallops. I had corn meal fried shrimps but the batter overwhelmed the shrimp taste. The bus boy was great in removing our empty plates and refilling our water glasses. Our waiter could have been more attentive but he was by no means as terrible as some of the other reviews make out the wait service to be.\r While it was a decent dining experience, I probably won't go back for the food unless it's just to for a beer and some oysters at the bar. Pros: Ambience, great raw bar Cons: seafood was not as great as i hoped more

Awful! Awful! Awful! 8/29/2007

We had a lunch on 8/27 with our very important guest. \r Rite after our main dishes were served, our waiter came and asked if we are going to order dessert. (This is when we just started eating) We said no, so he brought our check while we were eating our meal. And he came to check if we took care of the bill. Again, this is just when we started eating. Still eating.... He came back again, and checked if we put our credit card on the bill. Even some of them were still eating, I didn't want him to come back again, so I put my credit card in the bill folder. Right after I did it, he came back and took the bill folder away. And he came back with a pen and receipt, and asked me to sign even though I was still eating my main dish. I could tell they wanted us to leave. And I don't understand why they want us to leave. I still gave them 18% of tip, but now I really think I should have given them any. Because of this awful service, our day was ruined, and we were very embarrassed in front of out guest. Food wasn't that great either. I don't understand why this restaurant is popular among some people. We will never return here, and I would NEVER recommend eating here. \r more
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Menu for Grand Central Oyster Bar

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New York's Premiere Racquet Shop.


  • The Scene
    There's something grand about eating in Grand Central Terminal, as 90 years of Oyster Bar patrons can attest. Just ask the time-pressed commuters who prefer the lunch counters;...

  • 4/18/2007 Provided by Citysearch

Additional information

  • Hours:

    Mon-Fri 11:30am-9:30pm Sat 12pm-9:30pm
  • Payments:

    Discover, American Express, Visa, Diner's Club, Master Card
  • Neighborhoods:

    Midtown, Midtown South Central

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