Rick Allison has long been acquainted with one of Washington’s favorite past times: shucking and slurping oysters. Before opening King Street Oyster Bar locations in Leesburg and Middleburg, Allison was a chef at Great American Restaurants and at raw-bar haven Old Ebbitt Grill. In late October, he’ll debut the third branch of his seafood restaurant in NoMa’s luxe Resa development.
Like its Virginia counterparts, the 247-seat restaurant will feature two opportunities for $1 oyster happy hour (washed down with $5 drinks). One will run daily from 3 PM to 7 PM while a second session rolls out Sunday through Thursday from 10 PM to midnight. At any hour, the kitchen will serve a rotating roster of a dozen East and West Coast 12 oysters, plus boutique bivalves from as far as New Zealand.
Some oyster shells will be sent to the Oyster Recovery Partnership, which recycles, cleans, and repopulates shells with baby oysters for the Chesapeake Bay. Others will be used in an Insta-ready “oyster wall.”
Appetizers and entrees are pulled from around the world. New Orleans gets a shout out with fried- oyster and shrimp po’ boys; ceviche nods to Peru; and New England lobster rolls are available both hot and cold.
The 24-drink cocktail list is overseen by general manager DJ Suan, an alum of Adams Morgan cocktail destination the Green Zone. He takes a similarly global approach. A banana daiquiri melding Jamaican rum and housemade roasted-banana syrup is an ode to his childhood in Hawaii: “One of the biggest things to do while you’re driving up to Hana, Hawaii is to stop and buy banana bread at these little roadside stands.” The bar is also pouring his take on a Pisco Sour, made with apple, coriander, and egg whites.
The restaurant will open with lunch, dinner, and happy hour service. Brunch will be added later.
King Street Oyster Bar. 22 M St., NE. Open Monday through Thursday, 11 AM to 11 PM; Friday and Saturday, 11 AM to 2 AM; Sunday, 10:30 AM to 11 PM.