Looking for a slightly casual, but slightly fancy restaurant in Philadelphia? The Oyster House is a not-to-miss visit.
A friend and I took a weekend girls trip to Philadelphia last month, with pretty much one thing in mind.
To eat our way through the city.
And I’m pretty sure we managed to accomplish that.
Although we were only there for one night, we made the most of our time, which pretty much means our weekend was packed with epic proportions of food deliciousness.
Say oysters and I’m there.
No questions asked.
Our hotel was pretty centrally located, and within walking distance to Reading Terminal, the famous LOVE sign, and the Oyster House restaurant, which we planned to visit for our starters that Saturday night.
Because, you know, oysters.
The restaurant is slightly on the small side, so if you’re going during the height of dinner time, and especially on the weekend, call ahead for reservations. Luckily we were there early and managed to snag a small table, but it was crowded at 5 pm, and packed when we left.
Dimly lit, and simply decorated, I could not love the décor more. Rustic and brick throughout, the walls were focused on one theme: oyster plates. Modern ones. Colorful ones. Sparkly ones. There are over 100 of the vintage plates throughout the restaurant, and they are part of the owner’s collection. Each one more beautiful than the next, I loved this out-of-the-box idea for decorating, and it was, obviously, perfect for the restaurant.
I can’t post the photo here because of its width, but this shot gives a great view to the place. The hostess led us to our table, and our waitress came by right away to offer drinks. A huge glass goblet sat in the center of the table with oyster crackers for snacking.
I was r-e-a-l-l-y tempted to throw our “appetizers only” plan out the window when I saw a fried oyster topped burger. I mean, my mouth is watering just thinking of it again. But my friend reminded me of our plan.
Although the restaurant was busy, service was brisk, and our dishes came out really quickly. Amazing kitchen and wait staff. I would be hard pressed to pick a favorite out of all the oysters we had, but if I had to, I would have said the BBQ Oysters, surprisingly enough. Just a hint of smokiness. Of BBQ flavors. And downright sublime.
I could have happily stayed the night there and stuffed myself silly with oysters. Our waitress was friendly and attentive, without being overbearing, and it was the perfect visit. If you want something a little different, opt for sitting at the centrally located marble raw bar where the staff will shuck the oysters right in front of you.
If you’re visiting Philly, the Oyster House is definitely worth a stop. And if you make a weekend out of it, you can find a few more Philly places to visit on my dedicated Pennsylvania board right here, and other tri-state area stops here.
1516 Sansom Street