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“Pretty good food - a bit cramped” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Pearl Dive Oyster Palace

Pearl Dive Oyster Palace
Ranked #96 of 3,189 Restaurants in Washington DC
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: American, Seafood
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Local cuisine, Bar scene, Large groups
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Brunch, Late Night, Full Bar, Outdoor Seating, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Neighborhood: Logan Circle/ Shaw
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
213 reviews
177 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“Pretty good food - a bit cramped”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 13, 2013 via mobile

Sunday lunch was awesome. The place was very busy and the tables are close together but the food was lovely. My wife's eggs Benny were the best we have seen in DC for a while and the warm oysters we had were very tasty. I looked at the wine list which was good with a great selection by the glass at all price points. I am keen to go back for dinner.

Helpful?
Thank kellyenz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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277 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    161
    88
    20
    4
    4
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Wilmette, Illinois
Level Contributor
40 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
“Outstanding on All Fronts”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 10, 2013

I dined at Pearl Dive last night with medium expectations. After all, how much can one do with oysters? This place exceeded my expectations on all fronts and I strongly recommend it to others for it's look, feel, service, innovation, creativity, presentation and delicious food.

First of all, my friends and I sat at the one table in the kitchen. They don't advertise that they have a kitchen table but you can call ahead and try to get a reservation at it. If you like interacting with the executive chef, see the food coming off the line, and talking food with the staff, this is for you! It's a calm kitchen and not as noisy as one might expect. The exec chef could not have been nicer to us. We received two tastings on the house in addition to what we ordered. Everything was amazingly presented, was cooked perfectly and was tasty.

Our party got the scallops, the oyster dinner, and the catfish po' boy. Not a weak link among them. We also had a few appetizers to share, both raw and cooked oysters, all of which were top notch.

I wouldn't hesitate to return here and strongly recommend you try it. For an extra special experience, try to get the kitchen table.

  • Visited January 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank JohnThomason
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
50 reviews
33 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Comparison with Hank's Oyster Bar”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 4, 2013

Although I was initially wary of the hype surrounding its opening, Pearl Dive has exceeded my expectations. The food is great, even if you don't like oysters, and the Pearl Cup is one of many excellent mixed drinks worth trying. A favorite discussion among my friends who live in the area is whether Pearl Dive is even better than perennial favorite Hank's Oyster Bar, which is only a few blocks away on 17th and Q. On the one hand, Hank's has more outdoor seating, but Pearl Dive's indoor-outdoor bar with a huge window that swings open to 14th St. gives the whole restaurant a fun atmosphere. I cannot decide which has better oysters, but I LOVE the fish with sage on Pearl Dive's menu, whereas Hank's does a great grilled hanger steak. To the credit of both, we have not been able to decide on a clear winner, and we will happily continue to frequent both Hank's and Pearl Dive.

Visited November 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank J J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Paris
Level Contributor
57 reviews
33 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“Excellent Exotic Cajun, Generous Drinks”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 27, 2012

This is a great place for healthful Cajun seafood and a relaxed ambiance. The service is great and very engaging and friendly. The crowd draws mostly fro 20-40s Tonians but also the after-work 30ish dames out with the 50-60s naughty grandpas. Lots of suits, ties, as well as jeans and sneakers. I was lucky to eat here on a Monday when a bottle of Italian Sangiovese was half price at $11. I will definitely return to this place if ever I find myself in DC again.

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
Thank zippideedoodle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
267 reviews
205 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 155 helpful votes
“Charming and delicious - best array of Oysters I have seen in years!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 22, 2012

5 stars for what it is. Walked in without a rez, midday, and the friendly and competent manager didn't miss a beat, and got us in a booth right away. It's charming, unpretentious, and really affordable in lieu of their 14th st. location (I assume cheaper rent dropped the prices a bit.... I definitely didn't find it too pricey like others).

The service is friendly, informal, and very helpful. The kitchen seemed a bit slow, and there were some minor missteps, but nothing to write home about (or dwell on here).

Exceptional selection of Oysters. We got the bacon wrapped "angels on horseback" oysters, that were smoky, and DELICIOUS. Also got the rockefeller, and they did the classic much justice. Also got 12 oysters, 6 types, 3 from the west, 3 from the east. It was the most exceptional array I have eaten in years, possibly ever. The Rhode Island Oysters are always incredible.

They had an Argyle Brut that I love - I can't seem to get away from Willamette Valley anymore. Their wines are superior - great selections, but the pricing on the list is completely wrong. 4 glasses of wine should never be cheaper than the bottle. I have worked in the biz a long time, and I have never seen that as a strategy, so unless management corrects me, it's a mistake. If you order a bottle, ask for the 4 glass pricing.

The Caesar was good. The gumbo was AWESOME. I make gumbo, I've eaten every type of gumbo around the south, New Orleans, etc... this stuff is top notch!Wonderful spot that we found thanks to the new Travel and Leisure article on DC. Job well done. WE WILL BE BACK! =)

  • Visited December 2012
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank OnlineConcierge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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