We may live in a landlocked desert, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy fresh seafood in town. These days more and more restaurants and popping up that serve top-quality seafood flown in from all over the country and world. Whether you like your oysters raw, baked, or charred on a grill, metro Phoenix has plenty of great options for getting your seafood fix.
Here are five of our favorite places for slurping oysters.
The Walrus and The Pearl
Located inside DeSoto Central Market in downtown Phoenix, The Walrus and The Pearl makes a perfect spot for a casual meal. This oyster bar serves a rotating selection of raw oysters sourced from all over the country — and you'll want to pair your selections with a glass of bubbly. For the best deal stop by during happy hour, offered Monday through Friday from 3 to 6 p.m. On Monday and Tuesday during happy hour oysters will cost you just $1 apiece; during the rest of the week the happy hour deal gets you oysters for $2 each.
The Salt Cellar
This classic Scottsdale restaurant in one of the coolest places to dine during summer. Hidden one story below street level, The Salt Cellar serves all manner of seafood dishes including, of course, raw oysters and oysters Rockefeller. You can get a half dozen Blue Point oysters on the half shell for $14 or an order of spinch and pernod sauce-topped oysters for $14. During the restaurant's happy hour, offered twice daily from 4 to 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. in the bar only, oysters are available for just $1.50 each and an order of oysters Rockefeller gets discounted to $8.
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Angry Crab Shack
With locations in Mesa and Phoenix (with more to come), Angry Crab Shack is one of the best-loved places in town for Southern-style seafood boils. But this restaurant offers more than just Cajun-spiced crab and crawfish. You can also get raw oysters on the half shell for $8 per half dozen or $16 for twelve. We prefer to get the restaurant's char'd oysters, which get nice and smokey after being cooked on a grill and come topped with garlic, breadcrumbs, and just a touch of cheese. This lighter take on a classic oysters Rockefeller comes by the half dozen for $12 or by the dozen for $24.
Central Bistro's oyster spread is not to be missed. And best of all, during Social Hour from 2 to 6 p.m. every day and all day on Monday, the restaurant offers raw oysters for a buck a piece. Order how ever many you please and your oysters will arrive on an ice-filled platter along with a vinegary mignonette, cocktail sauce, and a side of seaweed salad. For the dollar price, you don't get to pick the type of oyster, but on our most recent visit we had no complaints about the daily selection: Kumamotos.
Little Cleo's Seafood Legend
Located at The Yard in Phoenix, Sam Fox's Little Cleo's Seafood Legend is probably our favorite of the restaurateur's concepts. Designed to look like an East Coast seafood restaurant, Little Cleo's serves an ever-changing lineup of oysters that you can order in any quantity you want. We like to order one of each selection and let the servers educate us about the subtle differences in each. Looking for a simpler oyster experience? Head to the spot for the happy hour, offered Monday through Saturday from 4 to 6 p.m., when a featured oyster will cost you just one buck. The restaurant also offers $2 champagne pours and half off absinthe cocktails during happy hour — you're never going to want to leave.