Alternative oyster: Grand Central Oyster Bar opens its Slope location

Shuck shack: Oysterman José Cisneros gets his shuck on at the Dec. 18 opening of Grand Central Oyster Bar’s Park Slope outpost.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

And the Manhattanization of Brooklyn continues – with oysters.

The Grand Central Oyster Bar, a Midtown seafood icon that opened along with the landmark terminal in 1913, unveiled its first Brooklyn location in a triple-wide storefront in Park Slope on Wednesday. The afternoon opening of Oyster Bar Brooklyn on Fifth Avenue was not so grand thanks to a total absence of diners, but the eatery’s co-owners say they know they will do well because they know Brooklyn.

“Fifth Avenue used to be the ass of Park Slope,” co-owner and Park Slope resident Jonathan Young said. “Now it’s sort-of like restaurant row here, but we do not want to change too much.”

Young, who previously served as general manager of the original restaurant, said he and his partner Bruce Fox wanted Park Slope to be the next outpost for the shellfish dispensary because of the borough’s “hot” factor. The proprietors never considered opening another Manhattan outpost, they said.

“Obviously, it’s a business decision as much as it’s a gut feeling,” Fox said.

Oyster Bar Brooklyn will offer a rotating menu of oysters from Long Island, Rhode Island, and Prince Edward Island, a Canadian province, among other bivalve havens, plus other pescatarian fare such as fried calamari and mussels. Beer picks include Blue Point Hoptical Ilusion and Bronx Pale Ale, though those might change as the owners get a better idea of what the locals want.

“If they sell, great. If they don’t, we’ll change it up,” Fox said.

Oyster Bar Brooklyn [254-256 Fifth Avenue between Carroll Street and Garfield Place in Park Slope, (347) 294–0596, www.oysterbarbrooklyn.com].

Reach reporter Megan Riesz at mriesz@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4505. Follow her on Twitter @meganriesz.
Bivalve businessmen: Grand Central Oyster Bar franchise owners Jonathan Young and Bruce Fox opened their fifth location in Park Slope, where Young lives, on Dec. 18.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

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