Stepping Slightly Out of Bounds for the Tuna Burger at Grand Central’s Oyster Bar

Oyster Bar Window
The Oyster Bar Take Out window in Grand Central is a Midtown Lunch gem. Perfectly fried oyster po’ boys, lobster gazpacho, Maryland She-Crab soup … these are just a few of the dishes you can get within Midtown Lunch range, from a New York institution that’s decidedly out of the typical ML budget. That said, they do have a few items that sneak above the $10 lunch mark. One of those being their Tuna Burger. Some time ago I sampled nearly the entire menu with my fellow ML contribs, but the Tuna Burger wasn’t included because of the price ($10.95). As a big fan of their Grilled Tuna Sandwich, I’ll admit the burger piqued my curiosity so the other day when my errands brought me to the Grand Central area, I decided to give that burger a try, to see if it was worth it for the extra buck …

Grand Central Oyster Bar Tuna Burger
When I opened the bag with my lunch, the early signs were promising. The burger was enormous and cooked to order. Want it medium rare or rare? You got it. It’s Asian style, which as far as the actual burger is concerned means that it has finely chopped scallion bits mixed in with the fish. For garnish there’s a cache of wasabi and pickled ginger along with standard burger toppings: tomato, red onion and lettuce (+1 for Bibb lettuce). Did I mention the burger is huge? Getting burger + bun + toppings in your mouth is a challenge. These days there’s plenty of lunch time fare tiptoeing out of the ML price range. This burger is worth the splurge. It’s a huge lunch that doesn’t leave you feeling overstuffed afterwards. This one is definitely going into my summer lunch rotation.

Speaking of summer, while I was there, I noticed they have Soft Shell Crab sandwiches ($12.95) — why didn’t I know that they had these?! (And yes, I will fall on the sword to see if the crab sandwich is worth the money). The gentleman manning the cash register let me know that lobster gazpacho is officially back in action on Mondays and Friday. And while the weather may be exhibiting somewhat manic swings, the signs of summer are accumulating and I say, bring it on.

Grand Central Oyster Bar Take Out Window, 89 East 42nd Street (in the Concourse), 212-490-6650


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    Are you sure you want to promote this place on ML? Did you happen to notice the Giant C in the doorway? They have it so that if the door is open you can’t actually see the fact that their NYC Dept of Health Inspection rating shows a C. What’s amazing is that I walk by every day and I never saw the rating sign until recently yet DOH site shows its been a C since December 2011.

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    I’m eating the Tuna Burger now, and it tastes much better knowing that it comes from a “C” establishment. I don’t like “A” establishments. “B” and “C” shows some character. Stick to your sanitized restaurants, more dancin’ room for me!

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    Congrats to NOLA Steve for making the first reference to “taste” in this review.

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    Something Phishy going on in here

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