Seafood restaurants are plentiful in D.C., and more and more have been specializing in the art of the raw bar in recent years. The city’s mid-Atlantic location means access to terrific oysters, and the city’s diners are often willing to splurge when they know quality is high. Here are some of the area’s top destinations for clams, chilled lobster, crab claws, and more.Read More
D.C.’s Destination Raw Bars
For when simple seafood is best
PassionFish (Multiple Locations)
Oysters, clams, prawns, and crabmeat cocktail are all to be found at this suburban restaurant, with locations in Bethesda and Reston.
This beachy Adams Morgan bar, which takes its cues from the Jersey shore, offers items like peel-and-eat shrimp and oysters on the half shell.
Ivy City Smokehouse
This restaurant’s affiliation with seafood company ProFish ensures a particularly fresh selection of oysters, clams, and more. Items can also be purchased for preparation at home at the adjoining seafood market.
Pearl Dive Oyster Palace
Oysters are consumed aplenty at this Southern-influenced restaurant with an open-air patio. Selections vary daily and usually include Black Restaurant group's own oyster, the Old Black Salt.
This always-buzzing Stephen Starr French dining room offers chilled and raw "fruits de mare" such as oysters, clams, lobster, shrimp and king crab. Order up the dramatic petit or grand plateau for a full sampling ($85-$160).
Hank's Oyster Bar (Multiple Locations)
Hit the ice bar and check out the daily selection of oyster and clams or try a sake oyster shooter. There's also the seafood plateau and shrimp cocktail. Hank's also has locations on Capitol Hill and in Old Town Alexandria.
Rappahannock Oyster Bar
This relaxing Union Market bar has a menu of Virginia oysters and clams, all grown on Rappahannock's own farms. The company is also behind Brine, a seafood restaurant in Merrifield’s Mosaic District development.
Dyllan’s Raw Bar Grill
The extensive raw bar selection at this relatively new addition to Georgetown features oysters, clams, maki rolls, ceviche, carpaccio and tinned seafood. Seafood towers can reach upwards of $250 here.
Fabio Trabocchio’s Italian restaurant emphasizes seafood at least as much as it does pasta. For a Spanish-influenced take on raw bar, visit their sister restaurant, Del Mar.
Rare Steakhouse & Tavern
The raw bar menu at this relatively new restaurant includes bigeye tuna, blue crab, tiger shrimp, and more.
Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab
As the name suggests, this Miami import is a rare place in D.C. to find the elusive stone crab. The prices of medium, select and large claws vary with the market. Find oysters, clams, and other seafood options here, too.
Old Ebbitt Grill
Washington, D.C.'s oldest bar and restaurant, Old Ebbitt has a large selection of oysters to mix and match. The larger orca platter provides an impressive sample of everything they have to offer — go during late night happy hour to make it affordable.
This raw bar is a stunner within the Yards development in Navy Yard, serving shellfish towers, crudos, crab salad, soft-shell crab, and more. In warmer months, visitors can enjoy raw bar items in the restaurant’s outdoor rose garden.
The Salt Line
Oysters are a major focus of this breezy restaurant near Nats Park. Kyle Bailey’s menu also has some more unusual offerings like razor clam ceviche.