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Public Fish & Oyster, Charlottesville, VA
0

Public Fish & Oyster

4.7
4.7
2044 Reviews
$31 to $50
Seafood
Public Fish and Oyster serves only the freshest and responsible sourced seafood. We believe in the complete dining experience and our knowledgeable staff is eager to provide you with the best dining experience Charlottesville has to offer.

Make a reservation

2 people

9:30 PM


Booked 41 times today

Additional information

  • Dining style

    Casual Dining

  • Cuisines

    Seafood, Contemporary American, Oyster Bar

  • Hours of operation

    Mon, Sun 4:00 pm–9:00 pm Dinner Tue–Thu 4:00 pm–9:30 pm Fri, Sat 4:00 pm–10:00 pm Happy Hour Daily 4:00 pm–6:00 pm

  • Phone number

    (434) 995-5542

  • Payment options

    AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

  • Dress code

    Casual Dress

  • Executive chef

    Gregg Dionne

  • Neighborhood

    Charlottesville

  • Cross street

    6th St. NW

  • Parking details

    Parking is available in our shared lot adjacent to the restaurant. In addition there is ample street parking and a free city lot a block away in the Ambemarle Hotel lot.

  • Public transit

    Bus line and trolly service right outside our door.

  • Additional

    Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Gluten-free Options, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Popular dishes

What 2,044 people are saying

Overall ratings and reviews

Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant

4.7
4.7 based on recent ratings
  • 4.7Food
  • 4.7Service
  • 4.5Ambience
  • 4.5Value

NoiseModerate

Loved For

  • Virginia

    Seafood

  • Charlottesville

    Best Overall

  • Charlottesville

    Best Food

  • Charlottesville

    Best Service

  • Charlottesville

    Best Ambiance

  • Charlottesville

    Best Value

  • Charlottesville

    Innovative

  • Charlottesville

    Neighborhood gem

  • Charlottesville

    Great for fine wines

  • Charlottesville

    Great for outdoor dining

  • Charlottesville

    Lively

  • Charlottesville

    Most Booked

Sort by

Filters

  1. JB

    JimBobVA

    Washington DC

    33 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    33 reviews

    Dined 6 days ago

    overall5food5service5ambience3
    Public Fish & Oyster is an excellent restaurant! Every single dish that hits the table, from the oysters and appetizers to the seafood and sides, is always delicious, and they keep a great, energetic-but-never-hectic, vibe going. The cordial, efficient, staff sets the standard, and everyone in our party always has a good time! Kudos to the kitchen, the waitstaff, the hosts & hostesses, the entire staff, really, you have a great restaurant!
  2. LW

    LoisW

    New York Area

    14 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    14 reviews

    Dined 6 days ago

    overall5food5service5ambience4
    Everything we had was so good! Started with a dozen oysters- then i had the mussels , my husband had the rockfish special. All were delicious. We shared key lime pie for dessert that was excellent. Only disappointment was the coffee! We will be back for certain.
  3. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Jacksonville

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined 7 days ago

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Public Fish & Oyster is our favorite place to dine in Charlottesville! Hands down the freshest and best oysters in the area. The service is always fantastic as well. I highly recommend requesting Alana as your server, she’s the best! Can not wait to return.
  4. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Richmond

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on January 20, 2023

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Lovely staff, excellent food. Will be back!
  5. CV

    CVilleJim

    Richmond

    3 reviews

    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on January 19, 2023

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Love this place. Good service and good food
  6. v

    vadiner14

    Washington DC

    40 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    40 reviews

    Dined on January 17, 2023

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    The best seafood in Charlottesville. Fresh, cold raw oysters serve properly. Great bread and desserts. Will definitely return.
  7. ML

    MLE64

    Washington DC

    6 reviews

    vip
    2.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on January 16, 2023

    overall2food3service2ambience1
    If you’re a fish and oyster restaurant, you shouldn’t run out of oysters or the daily fish special, especially on the same night. And we gambled on the outside dining and lost—we left way too cold. Perhaps it should be limited to months when temps are more moderate. Overall, it was not a pleasant experience. Won’t be going back.
  8. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Richmond

    3 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on January 15, 2023

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    One of my favorite restaurants in Charlottesville! The happy hour lobster rolls are the best!
  9. s

    sarah

    Richmond

    4 reviews

    5.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on January 15, 2023

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Great food, super fresh. And the key lime pie was divine!
  10. K

    Krisg

    Washington DC

    19 reviews

    vip
    2.0

    19 reviews

    Dined on January 14, 2023

    overall2food2service2ambience2
    We had a disappointing night at Public. The place was loud, cold, and crowded. Our waitress was slow and not attentive. The fish of the day was ok but the portion was skimpy. My Hodgepodge dish was lacking seafood and drowned in a tasteless brown sauce. Plus it was my birthday and the waitress even asked at the start of the meal. The end came and she didn’t even offer the dessert menu. A huge disappointment of a night that ended with an expensive bill.
  11. l

    louise

    Richmond

    54 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    54 reviews

    Dined on January 12, 2023

    overall5food5service4ambience4
    Great food
  12. VC

    VeraC

    Washington DC

    46 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    46 reviews

    Dined on January 11, 2023

    overall4food4service5ambience5
    Cosmo and espresso martini on point and delicious. Clam chowder flavor was good, too many potatoes, not enough clams. Oyster fabulous. Good section. We had crab legs and crab cake Sandwich-both of which were good for this area.
  13. TB

    ThomasB

    Washington DC

    1 review

    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on January 11, 2023

    overall3food3service3ambience3
    The wine selection has changed and is lacking. The waitress was not that well-versed in the wines available. Overall, I think it’s lost a few steps. What is one of my four “go to” restaurants in Charlottesville. That’s changed going forward. I would recommend to a friend with qualifications.
  14. A

    Alessandra

    Richmond

    5 reviews

    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on January 11, 2023

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Our server was fun as well as helpful and made the dinner even better
  15. O

    Outoftowner

    Richmond

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on January 11, 2023

    overall5food5service5ambience4
    We were seated near the front and side door. Each time the door opened the cold air hit us. It didn’t impact the enjoyment of dinner.
  16. S

    Superfoodie1

    Charlotte

    10 reviews

    vip
    3.0

    10 reviews

    Dined on January 11, 2023

    overall3food5service5ambience3
    It was too cold sitting outside with no heaters. Wish they would have turned them on for us. Just don’t like having to eat in my coat. Heaters should be turned on before guests get there to warm the tent up. The food was good.
  17. WF

    WilliamF

    Washington DC

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on January 8, 2023

    overall5food5service5ambience4
    Excellent staff service. Outstanding food. Highly recommend this place.
  18. R

    Rena

    Washington DC

    2 reviews

    3.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on January 7, 2023

    overall3food5service3ambience3
    Food was reasonably priced, service was ok! If you can sit inside that’s ideal the outside was definitely cold despite heaters. Wouldn’t recommend sitting at the bar.
  19. YO

    YanniO

    Washington DC

    5 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on January 5, 2023

    overall5food4service5ambience5
    Had a great time. 1st dinner here for 2023!!. Megan was awesome, and a pleasure to chat with.
  20. j

    jimo

    Western NC

    11 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    11 reviews

    Dined on January 3, 2023

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    PHENOMENAL AS ALWAYS!!!!
  21. T

    Theo

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on January 3, 2023

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Lobster rolls, oysters, and the mixed seafood are very delicious. Obviously I’ll come back and taste more.
  22. MB

    MartyB

    New York Area

    66 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    66 reviews

    Dined on January 3, 2023

    overall5food5service5ambience2
    As usual excellent. If you are a raw oyster fan this is the place. That's just for starters. The rock fish special was ideal. We got lucky the weather cooperated and we ate outside. Terrific. Inside is rustic but comfortable with a terrific selection of beers if that's your thing plus you can watch the oyster shocker do his thing. If you happen to be in Charlottesville and are looking for great food, this is the place. Everything is locally sourced except the oysters of course. Oh, and I forgot too mention the mussels also not to miss and usually shareable. Sounds like more than one night of dining and that's probably true so stay an extra night and enjoy. Oh, great wine list
  23. M

    Michael

    Raleigh

    6 reviews

    5.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on December 31, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience4
    Four of us celebrated New Year's Eve at PF&O with an excellent meal and service that matched. Started off with clam chowder and oysters on the half shell (superb). Entrees included red fish, snow crab legs, PEI mussels and lobster roll. All were extremely well prepared. Our server and the kitchen easily accommodated my wife's food allergies with tweaks to her order. Our wait for our entrees was slightly longer than normal (on a very busy night) and the hostess brought our table a large shrimp cocktail to share to tide us over. (An extremely nice touch). This was our first visit to PF&O and it has already earned a place as one of our very favorite restaurants in Charlottesville. If you are looking for great seafood, a fun environment and top-notch friendly service PF&O delivers!
  24. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on December 31, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Amazing food, drinks and service! Highly recommend for a special occasion dinner.
  25. T

    Tucca7

    Richmond

    4 reviews

    5.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on December 31, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Our first visit. Excellent food choices from the appetizers to the entrees. Loved the oyster choices. Food was very good and our waitress was great. Definitely will be going there again.
  26. JM

    JMUgrad

    Richmond

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on December 30, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Phenomenal food, excellent array of oysters, extensive wine list. Definitely won’t disappoint!
  27. CC

    CruisingChick

    New York Area

    4 reviews

    4.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on December 28, 2022

    overall4food4service5ambience5
    Great service and ambience. Mussels, crab cakes, crab legs and oysters were very good. My husband said his oyster po boy was just okay. Overall it was very good and would go back.
  28. YO

    YanniO

    Washington DC

    6 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on December 23, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Thanks Erin, awesome service! Thanks John for happy hour kick offs!!
  29. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on December 21, 2022

    overall5food5service3ambience5
    Service was slow but very nice if you weren’t I’m a hurry
  30. CT

    CvilleTownie

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on December 19, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Great selection of fresh oysters and nice happy hour pricing
  31. JM

    JohnM

    Las Vegas

    3 reviews

    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on December 19, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    PFO never disappoints. We go 3-4 times a year and they always recognize us when we walk in. The staff is terrific and the food incredible. We always feel we are the only people being served even when it is a packed house. We will keep coming back!
  32. RH

    RobertH

    Houston

    7 reviews

    5.0

    7 reviews

    Dined on December 17, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Love love love this place! Best seafood in Charlottesville. Great atmosphere. Friendly fun staff!
  33. GW

    GWR1

    Washington DC

    51 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    51 reviews

    Dined on December 17, 2022

    overall4food4service4ambience3
    We have dined here several times over the past decade and have considered this our go to for C-Ville. We will likely look for other options after this last visit. Quality of oysters subpar. No fresh fish options on the menu. Menu has become pedestrian. We have previously ranked this best in town more than once, but no longer.
  34. O

    Oscar

    Richmond

    24 reviews

    4.0

    24 reviews

    Dined on December 16, 2022

    overall4food4service5ambience4
    Good dinner but lose the polystyrene to go containers. The food was quite good, and the service was excellent. It was a bit noisy on the patio, but we still enjoyed dinner. Given the high prices, I’d hope the owner could afford to use recyclable to go containers instead of the cheap, environmentally toxic, non-recyclable polystyrene. I was surprised and disappointed. C’mon Public Oyster House. You can do better.
  35. MS

    MichaelS

    Richmond

    4 reviews

    5.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on December 15, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience4
    This is our first visit to Public Fish & Oyster based upon reviews. My wife and I arrived at 4:15 for an early dinner prior to concert at JPJ arena. We were seated promptly, perused the menu and decided to order the crab cake duets for each of us. As an appetizer, I had a bowl of New England clam chowder, which was hearty and served hot, the way I like it. My wife started with a small garden salad, which was ample. When our main dish arrived, there were two large crab cakes and two vegetables on the dish. Needless to say, the crab cakes were delicious...just lump crab meat, no fillers! And the meal was served hot! If we are ever in this area again, would come back.
  36. E

    Eddie

    Central Coast

    5 reviews

    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on December 12, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Superb experience Oysters were fabulous. All 3 mains were Michelin star quality. And superb service.
  37. RD

    RobD

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on December 11, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    The server and the bartender were fabulous and the food was outstanding
  38. PB

    PaulB

    New York Area

    4 reviews

    5.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on December 5, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience4
    Service was great even though the place was packed. The oysters were perfect. Other dishes were also very good. It is a small place so make sure you have a reservation.
  39. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    New Orleans

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on December 4, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Best crab cakes I’ve had! Loved our experience and everything we had
  40. TW

    TinaW

    Atlantic City

    10 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    10 reviews

    Dined on December 3, 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience4
    Excited to find a restaurant with delicious gluten free options

Safety precautions

  • Cleaning & sanitizing

    • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
    • Common areas deep-cleaned daily
    • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
  • Physical distancing

    • Limited number of seated diners
    • Distancing maintained in common areas
    • Extra space between tables
  • Protective equipment

    • Waitstaff wear masks
    • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
  • Screening

    • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace

FAQs

Public Fish & Oyster offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (434) 995-5542.

Public Fish & Oyster is rated 4.7 stars by 2044 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable.

Make a reservation

2 people

9:30 PM


Booked 41 times today
Google Map for Public Fish & Oyster

513 W. Main St, Charlottesville, VA 22903

Additional information

  • Cross street

    6th St. NW

  • Neighborhood

    Charlottesville

  • Hours of operation

    Mon, Sun 4:00 pm–9:00 pm Dinner Tue–Thu 4:00 pm–9:30 pm Fri, Sat 4:00 pm–10:00 pm Happy Hour Daily 4:00 pm–6:00 pm

  • Cuisines

    Seafood, Contemporary American, Oyster Bar

  • Dining style

    Casual Dining

  • Dress code

    Casual Dress

  • Parking details

    Parking is available in our shared lot adjacent to the restaurant. In addition there is ample street parking and a free city lot a block away in the Ambemarle Hotel lot.

  • Public transit

    Bus line and trolly service right outside our door.

  • Payment options

    AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

  • Executive chef

    Gregg Dionne

  • Additional

    Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Gluten-free Options, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine

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