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Oyster Gourmet
California's dry climate produces a more briny oyster

Ah, Grand Central Market, why can’t we quit you? First you opened an improbably sexy breakfast joint. Next you got Bon Appétit magazine all hot and bothered. Then last week, you debuted an architecturally edgy new kiosk devoted to our favorite aphrodisiac: oysters. 

The Oyster Gourmet is easy to spot, even amid the bustling crowds near the Hill Street entrance. It’s a wood-and-canvas stand that looks like the offspring of a bivalve and a tiki bar. Here, master escailler (oyster expert) Christophe Happillon proffers a well-focused and mostly local menu of raw oysters, clams, shrimp and sea urchin--whatever’s best from the day’s catch.

Perch on a stool and ask for three big, meaty oysters ($9) followed by tuna poke--cubed raw tuna seasoned with sesame oil, soy sauce and chopped chiles, heaped on a clamshell ($10). Wash it down with a glass of Chardonnay, then leave happy because you enjoyed top-shelf seafood without having to shell out big bucks. 

The Oyster Gourmet, 317 S. Broadway; 310-570-0682 or

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