GT Fish & Oyster
531 N. Wells St. 312-929-3501
Rating: !!!! (out of 4) Already hot
The scene: Seriously bustling. The decor at GT in River North, the latest Boka Restaurant Group eatery, is all ships-at-sea paintings, plates set with fishing sinkers and lighting fixtures that look like giant pearls tangled in fishing nets. The crowd is mostly working the business-casual uniform, with the occasional diner channeling the nautical feel with a striped sweater or scarf.
The food: Giuseppe Tentori, the “GT” behind the name, tells us the staff shucked more than 500 oysters a night during opening week. Unless you’re an expert on oyster varieties, ask your server to put together a sampler. A big thumbs up for the salty-citrusy vinegar sauce and apple-cucumber cocktail sauce they're served with; I couldn’t help but think I hadn’t really enjoyed oysters this much before because I'm just bored by plain ol’ cocktail sauce. The classics (clam chowder, lobster roll, Key lime pie) are solid, but the more contemporary dishes -- such as smoked salmon with pickled cucumber and barbecue eel atop wasabi octopus salad -- were the most memorable.
The drinks: You can’t go wrong with a flute or bottle of bubbly with those oysters. Craft cocktails courtesy of BRG mixologist Benjamin Schiller go down quickly. Our favorite was the Highland Daisy, a blackberry-mint-pear concoction spiked with tequila.
Bottom line: Fresh off the success of Girl & the Goat, the Boka guys have successfully adapted the oyster bar for downtown’s younger crowd; while your parents go to Shaw’s, you and your friends can opt for GT. Just keep an eye on your ordering: Like any restaurant with a shared-plates menu, the bill adds up fast.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun