Almost once a week, after a particularly long day on the grind, when the stress starts to overwhelm me, I get a serious craving for oysters. It’s become my way of hitting the reset and regrouping. I’ll take ‘em just about anywhere they’re fresh, but if I can manage to have those delectable mollusks on a nice patio overlooking the waterfront at sunset with a strong cocktail in hand, then I’m pretty much in heaven.

The Dill-icious cocktail is just that.

The Dill-icious cocktail is just that.

It just so happens that Jack’s Oyster Bar & Fish House delivers exactly that. Situated right next to Bocanova’s waterfront side in Jack London Square, the new restaurant offers a full bar with handcrafted cocktails, a great beer and wine list and a menu focusing on classic California seafood with a few interesting twists.

The raw bar provides a center piece for the space.

The raw bar provides a centerpiece for the space.

Chef-owner Rick Hackett and Meredith Melville, who opened neighboring Bocanova 5 years ago, have completely revamped the space with sleek, modern architecture and beautiful artwork. With an outdoor patio section overlooking the harbor, Jack’s provides the perfect environment for enjoying their plethora of amazing seafood options. The back of the restaurant is adorned with a large-scale wheat-paste mural installed by local artists Becky Carter and Michael de la Torre, giving the interior a whimsical and uniquely Oakland flare.

Oakland mural.

Oakland mural

Executive Chef Peter Villegas’ menu keeps it simple with a focus on sustainability and freshness. In addition to the extensive raw bar, Jack’s offers traditional East-Coast items such as lobster rolls, chowders and crab cakes with a California twist, pulling influences from Vellegas’ globe-trotting culinary experiences to craft original dishes like his battered soft shell crab on a bed of kimchi, drizzled in black garlic, or the baked sardines with with radish and salsa verde.

Baked sardines.

Baked sardines.

Adding to their focus on sustainability, a portion of their featured oyster specials are donated to the Watershed Project, a nonprofit devoted to research and monitoring of the San Francisco Bay.

Freshly shucked oysters on ice.

Freshly shucked oysters on ice


Jack’s Oyster Bar & Fish House
336 Water Street in Jack London Square, Oakland
Open Monday – Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.; Saturday 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. and Sunday 11:00 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.

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