The Oyster Gourmet Opens in Grand Central Market Oct. 30

Just look for the giant mechanical oyster

Grand Central Market will be gaining another new tenant next week: the long-awaited oyster bar from Christophe Happillon, The Oyster Gourmet.

Happillon, who is Los Angeles’ only Master Ecailler (shellfish master) is known for his pop-up oyster bars at Joe’s, Akasha, Church & State, Perch, and Le Zinque. At this first restaurant, you’ll be able to grab a front-row seat at a 14-seat circular raw bar and enjoy shellfish and other freshly shucked delicacies. On the opening menu will be oysters, clams, shrimp, sea urchin, and some raw fish preparation to be enjoyed alone or combined as a platter. The seafood will be sourced from the West Coast as much as possible, with each selection certified ecologically sustainable. The menu will also include wine and champagne pairings, thanks to the Grand Central Market’s new beer and wine allowances.

“The Oyster Gourmet is the realization of my dream of creating a forum to share my passion for the oyster and the ocean,” said Happillon. “A big part of this dream was having a physical space that is unlike any other oyster bar people have ever seen.”

The most visible feature of the new kiosk is its unique, oyster shell-shaped design. The Oyster Gourmet features eight retractable canvas-skinned panels that open and close. The combination of metal, wood, and canvas also lends a certain maritime quality.  To create The Oyster Gourmet’s kiosk, Happillon tapped design firm The Los Angeles Design Group. The LADG Principal Claus Benjamin Freyinger describes the space as “a hybrid of a restaurant and a performance piece with Happillon on stage in the center, akin to the pearl within the oyster.”

The Oyster Gourmet will be open starting Oct. 30 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday, and until 9 p.m. Thursday through Saturday.