The Hourly Oyster House

4.6
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603 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Oyster Bar
The Hourly Oyster House is a vibrant and welcoming neighborhood outpost in the heart of Harvard Square, where guests can enjoy thoughtfully sourced and playfully prepared seafood and oysters from New England and beyond, as well as a carefully crafted selection of signature cocktails, beer and wine. With a focus on seafood, The Hourly serves up New England classics in a dynamic and airy space. Instead of traditional bread service, meals begin with fresh, homemade salt and vinegar chips and guests are sent home with taffy from Harvard Square neighbor, Cabot’s Candy.
What 603 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
4.5
food
4.6
service
4.6
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
93% of people would recommend it to a friend
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San Francisco
17 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Loved the option that gave our party 2 of each of the day's oyster...SO yummy and liked the mignonette, too. I was a bit surprised that my panfried chicken did not have a crust but the chicken thighs were juicy and tasty and the spinach was a great part of the dish. I would definitely go again :)

T
New England
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 3food 4service 5ambience 3

The food at Hourly was delicious. The portions could have been bigger. The noise level made it difficult for our party of 5 to converse on a high top table.

CG
New England
9 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Absolutely love this restaurant! The calamari is my favorite thing on the menu.

CK
New England
4 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The lobster roll and scallops were excellent. I tried the chocolate mousse for the first time and by far it was the best I’ve had. The complimentary chips were also an excellent added bonus.

LP
Richmond
1 review
Dined on October 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We LOVED it! Wonderful meal in Cambridge. Everything was top-notch. Highly recommend.

ZA
1 review
Dined on October 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Incredible experience, drinks where brought to us very quick. Oysters where fresh and tasted amazing. 10/10 will recommend to a friend!

A
New England
3 reviews
Dined on October 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Best food! The oysters are amazing!

OT
New England
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 4ambience 4

Disappointing. Have eaten many times before satisfactorily. but this time food was substandard. Halibut was dry overcooked and inedible. Caesar salad dressing a big glop. Sliders just ok. Poke was just ok. Service good. .

BH
New England
22 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Service was excellent and food was great. I’m looking forward to going back again!

LG
New England
11 reviews
Dined on September 19, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Loved the historical ambiance. Service was great. I tried bronzini and it was SO delicious! Oysters are amazing. My only gripe is that they load the drinks with ice - stick to beer and wine.

JK
New England
1 review
Dined on September 19, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

Loved the food, waiter, service, value, but it was noisy.

E
New England
5 reviews
Dined on September 19, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Very attentive service. Excellent burger and of course great oysters. Beer selections could either be broader or rotate more. Overall, a fine place.

SD
New England
3 reviews
Dined on September 18, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Wonderful location in the heart of harvard square!

C
1 review
Dined on September 14, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 5

Beautiful restaurant in a great location but the staff was inexperienced and we received apps and entrees simultaneously. Oysters were delicious and rest of the food was good though one person who was a vegetarian had little to choose from. They need to get mature and knowledgeable waitstaff to make this place feel like the bustling brasserie that it could be.

OT
New England
8 reviews
Dined on September 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great creative and delicious food. Great service. Great value. Highly recommend.

EG
San Francisco
24 reviews
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We went with our son and had a great meal. Loved the oysters, fresh and cold. The lobster roll was amazing as well as the seared scallops. From the outside the place looks more “white table cloth” fancy but inside is more relaxed, almost like an upscale sports bar. Food and service outstanding. We would definitely go back.

OT
New England
5 reviews
Dined on September 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We enjoyed our dinner. The service and food quality were top notch. We had a nice meal and didn't have to shout.

D
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on September 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great lobster rolls and a nice selection of wines. Make sure to ask for the home made potato chips.

OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on August 23, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

After giving the tip, the waiter didn’t see and tell me Thank you

KW
Las Vegas
17 reviews
Dined on August 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Friendly, not pretentious place with a diligent staff and great food. It's a place you could walk into in a business or casual attire and still feel comfortable. Great oysters, as you might expect, at typical prices. Seafood is not an inexpensive meal, but this place seems pleased to serve. Staff work cooperatively so that multiple people are taking orders, serving, refilling, etc. That part of the operation is seamless, which is not always true at other restaurants. As my daughter is just starting her undergrad work in Boston, I anticipate coming back many times.

s
New England
16 reviews
Dined on August 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The return of the chilled corn soup with crab was worth the wait -- it is the perfect combo of summer and seafood in a bowl! I recommend having more than one while it lasts (currently part of Dine Out Boston menu). Still hopeful however it will make an encore before summer ends. The debut of the chocolate cheesecake with toast pistachios and salted caramel was equally exciting -- the texture and taste were sublime and hit the spot as a finale to a great meal. Both should be cast as regular players on the menu!

LL
New England
2 reviews
Dined on August 20, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 4

They had a pretty good selection of oysters. Personal favorite was the Cotuit.

JH
1 review
Dined on August 19, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Everything was lovely. The ambience and the service especially. We were especially pleased that we were not rushed. We had a lovely leisurely evening.
The food was very good. Only comment the batter on fish and chips a bit too thick.
We would definitely return

OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on August 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

My mother ‘a birthday.

CC
1 review
Dined on August 13, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Good choice for seafood if you don't feel like going down to the harbor. Enjoyed it.

OT
Denver
18 reviews
Dined on August 12, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 3ambience 3

Average todo

NY
New England
33 reviews
Dined on August 11, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 2

This place has a few specialty items that are good—but the rest is food-service grade.

The lobster roll was very nice, buttery, and a lot better than at “Alive and Kicking.” The wine, a Soave Classico, was genuinely nice.

But everything else was meh. Fries were limp/sad. Candied walnut-strawberry salad used industrial candy-coated walnuts (old, sugary, no flavor) and bagged arugula. Oysters come with canned cocktail and bottles of hot sauce sauce in an age where many nice restaurants make their own. The dinner ends with saltwater taffy, but it’s flavor is that of a chemical factory.

The oysters were OK. Selection is big, but I suspect they fill their oysters with salt water. They all had identical table-salt flavor to them. There are better oysters at both Waypoint and Little Donkey.

Ambiance is dark and the tables, cutlery, etc on the cheap side. Hard surfaces makes it a bit noisy. My water glass tasted like dishwasher odor. Service is friendly but amateur. We will not be back unless we’re craving their particular lobster roll.

CK
New England
5 reviews
Dined on August 10, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Though I thought the lobster roll was overpriced, the food was very good to excellent. The service was as good as it gets and the ambiance made you feel like you were in a special restaurant. I'll be planning another visit soon.

OT
New England
2 reviews
Dined on August 10, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Great service. I liked everything except for the grain bowl which I thought was a little too creamy. The server was nice enough to take it off of my check. Everything else was fantastic and the oysters were delicious as always!

OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on August 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was outstanding our service was very good. The lobster and oysters were the stars. Make sure you get some oysters they are a bit pricey but very delicious.

SF
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on August 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Business dinner with coworkers. Yummy food and fit the per diem budget. Service extraordinary. Only complaint is it was a bit too warm

s
1 review
Dined on August 5, 2019
Overall 5food 3service 4ambience 5

the oysters were delicious!
i am not too sure about the presentation of the crab cakes though taste wise was ok.
don’t get the seafood pasta...
the burger was great too!!

definitely place to go to get the oysters!

S
New England
39 reviews
Dined on August 5, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 4

Food was good. Loved the oyster choices. Our only compliant is that service was VERY slow.

OT
New England
3 reviews
Dined on August 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The branzini was outstanding! I would order the same next time I go there!

LD
New England
3 reviews
Dined on August 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My daughter and I were delighted to celebrate National Oyster Day at The Hourly! We knocked back 2.5 dozen of four different varieties and were pleased with ourselves that we could actually determine subtle differences between them all!
Service was excellent, food was fantastic (strawberry/goat cheese salad & some kind of sliders), we were able to leave in time to get to our next event, and it was all just great.
Thank you!
Kendra & Libby

s
New England
17 reviews
Dined on August 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Celebrating National Oyster Day at The Hourly was perfection! The selection was outstanding across the board. Service top notch. While ideal for the holiday -- is also a gem year 'round for oyster lovers and foodies alike!

AA
New England
1 review
Dined on August 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Loved the oysters. They were delicious and so fresh! My favorite oyster bar.

W
New England
47 reviews
Dined on August 5, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Good spot for oysters in the Square. It's usually not as crowded as other nearby spots, perhaps because it is tucked away on Dunster Street.

OT
New England
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I ate the fish that is cooked packed in salt, it was amazing!

OT
New Orleans
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We ate outside in their adorable courtyard with our dog and had a great meal!

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