Liv's Oyster Bar

4.6
1511 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Seafood
Opening in 2006, Liv’s Oyster Bar quickly became a dining destination in Old Saybrook. Inspired by his daughter, Olivia, and years of experience in the restaurant industry, owner John Brescio set out with a desire to welcome the community to his family’s table. Dining at Liv’s, whether in the main room, at the bar, or on the patio, is an experience to be savored with friends and family long after summer on the shoreline has past.
John Brescio also serves as Liv’s Executive Chef, creating simple, focused dishes with an emphasis on local ingredients, and the stunning seafood that the area provides. The menu at Liv’s changes with the seasons, bringing guests a true taste of the pristine environment. John works closely with Liv’s partners to make sure only the best produce is used, as he would serve nothing less to his family.
Together with his exceptional staff, John welcomes you to the special experience he’s created at Liv’s Oyster Bar.

Specials

Happy Hour Mon-Fri 4-5:30


MON-FRI 4-5:30 Enjoy All Clams and 1 type of Oysters For $1.00
Also Enjoy Our Special Happy Hour Wine and Draft of the Week & New Happy Hour Menu!

Terms and Conditions:

Valid For: 1 - 20 people

Starts: December 24, 2018

Ends: December 25, 2117

Availability: Mon-Thu 4:00PM-5:15PM

Oyster Night

$1.00 Oysters All Night (1 type)
$1.00 Clams All Night

Terms and Conditions:

Valid For: 1 - 20 people

Starts: November 14, 2018

Ends: November 15, 2117

Availability: Wed 4:00PM-9:00PM

What 1511 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.7
service
4.4
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
100% of people would recommend it to a friend
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PS
New England
9 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Third time I have eaten here and the food and service have been very good each time.

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AK
San Francisco
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

We go to Liv's a few times a year. The food and service is consistently good. Among the four of us visiting the other evening, we each had a different entree and everyone was pleased. The only downside for me was that the tuna I ordered had a piece of gristle through it that made part of it inedible (although the flavor was good). We recommend Liv's to friends all the time, particularly if they're oyster fans!

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OT
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Valentine’s Day & Birthday

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on February 10, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Great place but did not like that they only accept parties of 6 at 5:15 or 8:15 despite reserving well ahead of time. Makes this “go to restaurant” a no go next time I have a party larger than 4.

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BC
New York Area
1 review
Dined on February 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We love Liv's!! We crave the truffle fries and oysters every week! The seasonal menu changes often and there's always something new to enjoy. Staff is knowledgeable, friendly and skilled. They're always accommodating.

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LR
New York Area
1 review
Dined on February 1, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We had an enjoyable evening with very good food, pleasant service, and a comfortable atmosphere. The oyster tasting sounded so good we had one for each of us, and it was well worth it. The mussels appetizer had a wonderful cream sauce that I've missed in recent restaurant fare. The trout was also very good. It's a bit of a drive for us but we plan to be back as often as we can. Thank you!

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W
New York Area
16 reviews
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Anniversary

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OS
New England
56 reviews
Dined on January 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I had a great cheeseburger after the panzanella we shared, she had the salmon w sesame seeds thanks to Brian. He took great care of us as usual, he never disappoints.

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HS
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on January 7, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

First time at Liv’s. Attending show at The Kate, and Liv’s is a very quick walk making parking a breeze. Delicious grilled octopus starter. The tuna main was fab and the fish tacos were very, very good! Worth a trip from Hartford just for dinner.

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AG
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on January 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We enjoyed a fabulous dinner with impeccable service. We’ll return soon for sure!

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MC
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My husband and I had a wonderful time. The food was flavorful and our waitress was outstanding. She was very knowledgeable and friendly.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 28, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Great service
Very responsive wait person
Great cocktail and wine selection
Outstanding raw bar selections

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KM
New England
1 review
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

We were looking for a last-minute reservation for Christmas Even and Liv's had openings. We had not tried it before, but the menu looked good and we do love oysters! We were greeted warmly upon arrival and led to our table. The restaurant is in a converted cinema and is comfortably appointed. Also - we could actually have a conversation which seems to be a rare occurrence in restaurants these days. Our waitress was friendly and very attentive. We ordered first 1 dozen, and then another dozen of oysters, several of which I had not tried before. They were fresh and well prepared. Next we enjoyed the shrimp and pork dumplings which were served nice and crispy over a bed of mildly spiced kimchi. I very much enjoyed the dumplings and could have eaten many more! For main courses, we had the Fennel Crusted Yellowfin Tuna which was perfectly prepared (rare) with olive oil mashed potatoes, broccoli rabe and a tomato, Kalamata olive & fennel slaw. The dish was delicious with nicely balanced flavors. Our other main course was a special that evening of John Dory with a saffron sauce over fingerling potatoes with a few muscles on the side. The sauce was lovely, but the fish was overcooked and the muscles seemed to be filled with water. Of note, we did eat the whole dish but mentioned it wasn't the best to the waitress who must have told the owner because she came right over, apologized and offered to take it off the bill or otherwise make good - which we declined saying it might have been a fluke and we weren't complaining, just felt she should know. For dessert, we shared the bread pudding which was served with a caramel sauce and what tasted like homemade ice cream. Very nicely balanced and a lovely treat (oh, and the owner did comp the dessert, which was very kind of her, and nothing we expected). Overall, we had a very enjoyable dinner and I would happily go back again!

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s
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on December 22, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

Raw bar good, food ok, bartender stingy with the Johnny Walker. Shrimp cocktail is special oysters good as well, but no big ones.hanger steak perfectly cooked but salty. Salmon not wild caught, just regular Atlantic veg over cooked.

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JS
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We are long time patrons of Liv's. It is always a pleasure to dine there. Our hostess, Julie, is exceptionally welcoming.

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GD
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on December 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always so accommodating with my allergies! Thanks again for a great time!

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KC
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 19, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great meal and great service!

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LB
New York Area
12 reviews
Dined on December 19, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent oysters and main course. Very fresh. A place to dine as they don’t rush you at all.

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C
New England
93 reviews
Dined on December 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The cocktails are always perfectly made and served. Kudos to the chef as many people are doing a Brussel sprout salad or something, but this shaved one is so good....it's addicting. In it's simplicity, but perfect execution ...it's divine. We have had it 4-5 times now and it's so consistent. The shaved brussel sprouts, pancetta, radicchio, parmesan, celery root and a creamy lemon vinaigrette is my favorite. Speaking of favorites, the fall dish of Butternut Squash tortellini with Duck Confit, sage, parmesan and duck cracklings is the bomb! I've had it several times this winter! Our other entrée was pan seared Barramundi, with Beluga lentils, tasso ham, leeks, escarole and an herb clam sauce. She literally cleaned her plate. Thank you to Devon for top notch professional service!

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LC
1 review
Dined on December 12, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful wait staff. All had great personalities as well as knowledge of the menu.

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SS
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous friendly manager and staff. Knew their oysters and made great recommendations.
Had a wonderful time.

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CT
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 2

I have been to this restaurant several times and loved everything about it. But this last visit was lackluster.
For starters, we were seated at the front of the restaurant, near the bar, at a table with very bright overhead lighting - almost like a spotlight (one of the very few lit like this), along a corridor that had a lot of foot traffic. Overall, it was an uncomfortable spot. We had always had the good fortune to be seated in the back of the restaurant, so now we know better and will request the back room if/when we return. I suggest you do the same.

The food was lacking. I ordered what was described as a rutabaga and apple soup with a bit of duck confit on top with mustard crema. It was a bit watery and surprisingly tasteless. Our delightful waitress noticed me shaking copious amounts of salt on it and inquired. She immediately offered to bring me something else and I accepted. The New England clam chowder was a vast improvement. The house was very gracious about this and agreed that the soup was off. The rest of the meal was fine but uncharacteristically unremarkable (although the pumpkin cream cheese cake was wonderful).

Having said all this, the restaurant has been a perennial favorite; the food has always been great, and the service very friendly and accommodating. So, we'll chalk it up to a blip and look forward to another visit some time in the future.

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DE
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 29, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

The food was good, and although our waiter was very kind the service was not great. The price does not match the experience.

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v
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on November 28, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

The oyster special is always great. The pasta with clams and broccoli raab was not great.

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WH
New York Area
12 reviews
Dined on November 27, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Four in our group; food came out in somewhat uneven timing. One diner’s fish was stone cold (and not ceviche.) Replacement dish was fine, but companions had finished their meal by that time

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KF
New York Area
23 reviews
Dined on November 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was wonderful! Liv’s is a continuous destination for us. Will be back again and again. Wonderful as always!

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h
Tampa
7 reviews
Dined on November 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

I brought my family for my wife and my 50th wedding anniversary. we went early evening so it was quiet but we enjoyed that. the food was outstanding for adults as well as the children. The service was excellent.

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MR
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Liv's is seriously my favorite restaurant of all time forever.

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MR
New England
49 reviews
Dined on November 19, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Good food. Nice atmosphere. Have been before and will go again.

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HC
1 review
Dined on November 11, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

From the clam chowder to the cioppino, from the scallops to the salmon, all dishes were tasty, imaginative and served promptly. It was a busy night, but we did not feel any rush, and instead were surrounded by obviously pleased diners enjoying dinner and conversation.

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KS
New England
11 reviews
Dined on November 10, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 4

We were seated and attended to in a timely manner. Raw bar was good, however our meals were just average. One was even undercooked. It was removed from the check without having to ask. Dessert was very good. Would probably not return.

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RS
New York Area
11 reviews
Dined on November 10, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

We are Liv's fans, and have been for years. Unfortunately, being seated in the front of the restaurant changes the entire experience. The tables there are way too close together; private conversation was impossible.

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CL
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on November 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Have never been disappointed with my meal or service here. It’s a regular go to for us.

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C
New England
93 reviews
Dined on October 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Liv's is definitely one of our favorites. The décor is so lovely and the staff are incredibly professional, knowledgeable. Can't say enough about the bartender and cocktails...have no idea how they always have the small martini shaker perfectly filled to fill your stemmed glass to the absolute rim! The chef does an excellent job of keeping some favorites on the menu, but also changing it up just enough seasonally to keep you guessing and curious about what is next! Love the oyster specials during happy hour and off season on Wednesday nights....all night. Always a pleasure!

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P
New York Area
1 review
Dined on October 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Hats off to Liv's! It was our first visit this fall for Wednesday's Dollar Oyster night. The freshest, best shucked raw bar around!

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KB
1 review
Dined on October 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great place with an outstanding menu and service. The warm mushroom salad was wonderful as well as the mussels. They recognized my birthday as it was selected in the Open Table reservation.

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RI
New England
17 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

We arrived 30 minutes early for our reservation but were quickly seated. The waitstaff here are some of the best trained and knowledgeable in any restaurant that we have ever visited. The food choices were unique and they had a great assortment of speciality drinks along with a great selection of wines and beer.

The presentation and freshness of all of the dishes was excellent. My wife ordered the oyster sampler plate which she claims were the best oysters that she has ever had. The desert menu was very tempting so we indulged and were very happy that we did. Like the drink menu and the entrees the deserts were not your run of the mill standards - they were freshly made and consistent with the season.

As good as the food was the service was the standout. Our server and the rest of the team were just so great I can not say enough about them.

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BK
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Service was nothing short of excellent, food was very good and the atmosphere was perfect.

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KC
New England
1 review
Dined on October 19, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We had an excellent meal, happy to find a good seafood place that isn't the usual shoreline stuff, and the service, particularly our waitress who was also the pastry chef, was great. The pumpkin cheesecake was exceptional, too, by the way.

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L
Philadelphia
25 reviews
Dined on October 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was delicious and the service (bartender) was excellent!

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