Anchor Oyster Bar

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Anchor Oyster Bar is probably more of a local scene versus famed Swan Oyster Bar.  Same setup with no reservations in this tiny restaurant.  Only a small number of counter seats and 4 tables makes for a bit of a wait.  Make sure you write your name, # in party, and time arrived on the white board when you walk up.

This cheesy garlic bread is delicious!  At first I thought a full order is too much ( you can order half an order, which is not listed on the menu), but the whole basket was devoured by end of meal.  Not too cheesey or garlic, but a nice balance between the two, along with a toasted crunch in every bite.

Clam Chowder at Anchor Oyster Bar - #28 on 2012 7x7 SF's Top 100 Eats
 The bowl of clam chowder here is a little on the smaller side compared to other bowls of clam chowder I've had.  It's a little thicker than Swan's chowder, but also has a sweet aftertaste.  Also, very few clams in this bowl.  Not something I would order again. I still prefer Basa Seafood's smokey bacon, chunky clam chowder.  (See post HERE).

Anchor Oyster Bar has a combination they do with a dozen oysters, 4 chilled prawns, and 8 steamed clams for $38.95, but I only wanted oysters, which are sold at $2.50 each.  The types of oysters vary daily.  I ordered 4 of each.  From bottom left, clockwise:  Washington Steamboats, New Brunswick Beausoleils, and British Columbia Kusshls.  Not a fan of the mignonette sauce here - a little too pungent.

The cioppino isn't on the menu, but if you ask for it they will make it for you.   Possibly the best thing here and the best cioppino I've had.  It's huge - enough for two people to share. The subtle spicy tomato base is slurp worthy, especially with the two garlic bread slices that come with the dish.  If you order the garlic bread, I suggest saving a couple pieces for soping up the broth.  One of the issues I have with cioppino is something is always overcooked, either the shrimp or the shellfish is too rubbery.  Anchor makes it absolutely perfect.  Each seafood (shrimp, mussels, clams, fish, and crab) are perfectly cooked so each piece is juicy and succulent.  Another bonus is they shell the crab for you so no need to ruin the eating momentum by cracking the crab.   

In order of favorite to least favorite (Bay Area):
Oysters: Hog Island  > Anchor Oyster Bar > Bar Crudo > Hog & Rocks >Swan Oyster (Haven't gotten to taste the oysters at Basa yet - tbd soon....)

Clam Chowder:  Basa Seafood > Hog Island > Anchor Oyster Bar > Old Port Lobster Shack > Sam's > Swan Oyster > Cook's Seafood

Cioppino: Anchor Oyster Bar > Sam's   

Address:                        Anchor Oyster Bar
                                              579 Castro St.
                                              San Francisco, CA

Type:                                seafood

Popular chomps:   oysters
                                              clam chowder
                                              garlic bread
                                              steamed mussels/clams      

Chomp worthy:       oysters
                                              garlic bread        

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