When you’re driving down the road and you see a sign saying ‘Cheap Seafood’, you usually keep right on driving. Seafood is one of those things where cheaper isn’t necessarily better.
On the other hand, we’re suckers for a good oyster party. There are plenty of great venues in Melbourne—places whose seafood quality you can trust—that’ll shuck you salty rock oysters for $2 a pop. Fresh squeeze of lemon, little squirt of Tabasco, happy days. You can sit there for hours, pounding oysters like nobody’s watching. We’ve rounded up all the best places to find cheap oysters in Melbourne. Intestinal happiness pretty much guaranteed.
Arbory Bar & Eatery | $2
The ever-popular station-dwelling Arbory Bar is always cooking up something, this time it's
cost-effective oysters. Making the most of the fleeting sunshine in Melbourne Arbory Bar is bringing their iconic oyster cart to Thursdays and Fridays, from 5pm until sold out, where each oyster will run you a grand total of $2.
Hemingway’s Wine Room | $2
Hemingway’s was inspired by the 1920s brasseries of New York and Paris, so you know they take their oysters pretty seriously. The guys here run Oyster + Champagne Wednesdays from 5pm to 7pm every Wednesday (go figure). That’s $2 a shell, for those playing at home. You can also get a glass of Imada ‘Seaside Sparkling’ sake for $13—this stuff was bottled to match with oysters from Japan’s best oyster region, Hiroshima.
Hobson's Bay Hotel | $2
On Sundays between 12pm and 3pm, newcomer Hobson's Bay Hotel is slinging shells at $2 a pop. Grab a spot on the balcony at 2pm then stick around for an early dinner—their rotisserie chicken is worth sticking around for.
Aptus Seafood | $1.30
Now we’re talking. If you’ve ever been to South Melbourne Market, you will have spotted Aptus Seafood. These guys have been around since 1969, and their oyster bar (with adjoining condiment rack) is legendary. You can get $1.30 oyster shots here every market day—that’s Wednesday, Friday, Saturday & Sunday. Note: this isn’t the same place as South Melbourne Seafood’s dedicated Oyster Bar. That’s ‘round the corner.
Philippe | $2
An underrated French gem in the middle of the CBD. And they do cheap oysters. What’s not to like? Sit yourself up at the bar in Philippe (you’ll find it just off Collins St, near George Parade) and enjoy freshly shucked $2 oysters—all day, every day. For an extra kick, order them Philippe Mouchel-style: with shallots, vinegar and a squeeze of lemon.
Imbue | $1
Imbue in Maribyrnong are still rocking their $1 Oyster Tuesdays. We’re talking fresh Hervey Bay rock oysters. Sometimes the shells are on the small side, but hey, it’s $1 you cheapskate. Imbue also includes a selection of vinaigrettes and sauces on the side. This deal usually gets slurped up pretty fast: it runs every Tuesday from 5pm until 9:30pm (or sold out). Bookings are a must.
Galah | $2
Galah in Windsor used to run $1 oyster Wednesdays. They’ve bumped the price to $2 a shell, but it’s still a bargain. Every hump day from 5pm you can get as many fresh-shucked oysters as you like—there’s no minimum order. Make it a seafood feast with a $15 bowl of mussels ($20 with a glass of house wine). Pro tip: you can also get $2 oysters on Sundays here, along with $14 Bloody Marys. Dynamite combo.
Did we miss any? Send us your cheap oyster suggestions and we’ll update the list.
Image credit: Hemingway's Wine Room