Smoky Oyster Dishes To Dine Out

The hottest oysters around town

We've been thrilled by the last year's proliferation of great oyster destinations.

Now, the uptick in dishes that marry the briny bivalves with a bold dose of smoke has us salivating anew.

Paul Fehribach of Big Jones claims his recent installation of a wood-burning grill was largely driven by a desire to grill oysters. Inspired by a meal at Drago's in Metarie, a New Orleans suburb, he tops Chesapeake or Rappahannock oysters with a Worcestershire-spiked mignonette, butter, breadcrumbs and Wisconsin Pleasant Ridge Reserve cheese ($14).

Find a similar treatment at Frontier, where butter-, parmesan- and breadcrumb-topped oysters ($8) come off the grill, joining a list of over 15 served on the half-shell. And at Rustic House, chef Jason Paskewitz packs the shells with a compound butter of lemon juice, cayenne pepper and Romano (market price) before they feel the heat of both the grill and a blowtorch.

At the miniscule new EL, chefs Phillip Foss and Andrew Brochu accept fewer than 10 diners per night (and only Thursdays through Saturdays). Landing a seat means experiencing the newest iteration of the superlative smoked oysters that Brochu served at Kith & Kin, here cold-smoked with a smoking gun and artfully garnished with smoked trout roe, chive tapioca and oyster cream.