Destin gets new eatery for fresh seafood

The Destin Log
Half Shell Oyster House is bringing a new experience for oyster lovers with its new location in Destin. [ABRAHAM GALVAN/THE LOG]

Seafood lovers have a new restaurant option to consider when looking for the best oysters in town.

Half Shell Oyster House, which officially opened on Memorial Day, specializes in local oysters and variety of Gulf Coast seafood with a New Orleans flare.

The first Half Shell Oyster House opened in the summer of 2009 in downtown Gulfport, Mississippi. The Destin location will be their 10th location and second in Florida. In 2012, the restaurant expanded in to Florida for the first time by opening its Sarasota location.

“We are more then an oyster house. We have a variety of food items on our menu,” said Stephen Vallette, the restaurant’s general manager. “We have something for everybody.”

With signature dishes like seafood stuffed portabella and bacon and pecan crusted redfish, the New Orleans flavor continues into their burgers, chicken, steaks and pastas.

“We will also have specials on locally-caught fresh red snapper and grouper and we will put our own spin on them,” said John Graham, Half Shell Oyster House’s area director.

The upscale casual restaurant has a French Quarter feel including murals, antique fixtures, lighting, wrought iron railings and antique wooden doors from New Orleans.

“Our biggest focus is the quality, consistency and our customer service,” Graham said.

Enjoying lunch with her family on Saturday during a soft opening for family and friends, Rachael Hollingsworth said the eatery is bringing a new flavor to Destin with the variety of seafood options.

“The food quality and consistency is the same as the other locations,” she said.

Hollingsworth said the atmosphere is perfect for date night or a night out with the whole family.

“My favorite is the crab and lobster dip,” she said. “I will just come in for the dip and have drinks with friends.”

Half Shell Oyster House will be open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. from Sunday through Thursday and until 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. The restaurant is located at 34761 Emerald Coast Parkway with happy hour specials from 3- 6 p.m.