Awful Arthur's Oyster Bar
Welcome to the home of the happy oyster where for over 35 years the oyster has been our world. The Outer Banks only authentic oyster bar is the place to enjoy sensational fare from the sea washed down with your favorite brew or cocktail. We serve by the peck, pound, and dozen, raw or steamed to perfection. Kicked back casual, down to earth friendly staff, and reasonable prices make Awful Arthurâ€™s Oyster Bar the all-time favorite of locals and travelers alike.
Whether you just discovered this famous Outer Banks restaurant, have been coming in for years, or have always wanted to, one thing rings true: Awful Arthurâ€™s Oyster Bar has a reputation that is second to none. The first oyster bar to open its doors on the Outer Banks 35 years ago, Awful Arthurâ€™s is a local mainstay known for its fresh, delicious seafood and casual, friendly atmosphere.
Customers will delight in watching hot oysters come hissing right out of the steamers as the guys behind the bar shuck and serve them on the restaurantâ€™s copper-topped bar. Order them steamed, fried, or slurp them down rawâ€¦no matter how you like your oysters, Awful Arthurâ€™s has it covered.
One of the only Outer Banks restaurants with an ocean view lounge, Awful Arthurâ€™s emits a welcoming, coastal vibe. Dubbed one of Americaâ€™s greatest oyster bars by Coastal Living magazine and recognized by Esquire magazine for its steamed, spiced shrimp, Awful Arthurâ€™s is not only a household name on the Outer Banks, but is recognized all over the country by its emblematic logo, backed by its delicious seafood and other popular menu items.
Nautical adornments lend to the salty, seaside atmosphere of this quintessential Outer Banks restaurant â€“ the perfect place to bring the entire family, enjoy a casual date night or join a group of friends to enjoy a peck of oysters, an ocean view, cold drinks and good times! Kicked back is the name of the game and Awful Arthurâ€™s plays it well.
Jo Whitehead proudly describes her oyster bar: â€œPeople want to sit at the Oyster Bar to watch and be entertained by the guys steaming all the oysters, shrimp, crab legs, and clams in front of them!â€
Awful Arthurâ€™s has been recognized by Esquire magazine for their steamed, spiced shrimp and took home 2014 â€˜Taste of the Beachâ€™ award for the chowder cook off.
A Little History
Born and raised in Virginia Beach, owner Jo Hopkins Whitehead moved to the Outer Banks in 1985 with her then soon-to-be-husband Jay, after she graduated with a business degree from Atlantic Christian College. The couple opened Awful Arthurâ€™s Oyster Bar, and after getting married in 1991, Jo and Jay would expand their venture of Whitehead and Whitehead to include Awful Arthurâ€™s Beach Shop and Bad Barracudas Raw Bar & Grille.
After having two children, Katie and John, Jayâ€™s untimely passing left Jo to run their three businesses and her family on her own, so in 2005 she decided to sell Bad Barracudas to focus on Awful Arthurâ€™s Oyster Bar and the beach shop. Katie graduated from Elon University, in 2017 and John will be a junior at Hampden-Sydney College this fall. Today, she continues to thrive. In the spirit of Jayâ€™s legacy Jo continues to give back to the community through many charitable donations and her work with the Outer Banks Community Foundationâ€™s David Stick Legacy Society and the Outer Banks Relief Foundation.
Along with its esteemed national recognitions, Awful Arthurâ€™s was the proud winner of the 2014 Outer Banks Taste of the Beach Annual Chowder Cook Off for its popular shrimp corn chowder. Awful Arthurâ€™s isnâ€™t just about oysters, thereâ€™s also a wide selection of crab legs and clams from the steamer, fried seafood, or steaks, chicken, pasta and salads to choose from that keep people coming back year after year. Oh, and donâ€™t forget to get a homemade dessert before you leave; they truly put the icing on the cake.
Chef AJ Johnson has been with Awful Arthurâ€™s for 25 years and in 2011 was promoted to head chef and kitchen manager. Consistency and customer service are two of AJâ€™s hallmarks as a chef, and many of the restaurantâ€™s regular customers wouldnâ€™t consider it a complete experience without a visit from him. AJ attributes Awful Arthurâ€™s enduring reputation to the effort of the staff led by Whitehead, with some employees having been with the restaurant for more than two decades.
If longevity is any indication of quality, itâ€™s no surprise that over the past three decades, Awful Arthurâ€™s has become a favorite among both locals and visitors.
Now come and taste the fresh seafood that started that reputation!
Open daily for lunch and dinner.
Also, stop by next door at Awful Arthurâ€™s Beach Shop for great logo apparel, resort wear, fashion jewelry coastal dÃ©cor and everything for the beach. Get your $2 off coupon from the Outer Banks Visitors Guide or the Outer Banks Go Guide or print out the coupon above.
MP 6 Beach Road
Kill Devil Hills