The Hourly Oyster House

4.6
487 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 487 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
4.5
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
95% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

First time trying oysters: the bartender was extremely knowledgeable and friendly, and did an excellent job directing me toward good places to begin.

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l
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

Delicious haddock sandwich, amazing tuna BLT and yummy kids fish and chips! Nice find. Head over to Mike’s Pastry next door for a cannoli to round out your meal and belly.

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DT
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a wonderful experience! The oysters were delicious and our server was awesome. We went for Valentine’s Day and the recommended specials were incredible and unique. Can’t wait to go back.

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FT
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Oyster are to die for! Been to this place like 3-4 times. Never a disappointment!

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SM
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Friendly and accommodating staff (I have a dairy allergy), this place was a perfect date night spot. Not too casual, not too fancy, and we both had clean plates!! Delicious oysters, my salmon was cooked PERFECTLY, and my husband was in love with the salt crusted bronzini. Will definitely be back!!

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B
New England
13 reviews
Dined on January 31, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Part of the Grafton Group, this venue excels over its peers. Good ambiance, not too loud, great service. Charred octopus included some overcharred items we literally could not identify or chew.  Side of greens was boring.  But most dishes were well-executed, tasty, and memorable in a good way.  Wine list and cocktails eminently respectable. Located in an old bank.  Good spot.

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A
New England
3 reviews
Dined on January 30, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Great food, awesome waiter... All three of us agree that we will be back -- VERY soon!

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LP
New England
9 reviews
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

What a great place hidden on a side street in busy Harvard Square. The menu was so great, it was hard to decide what to get. Split the mussels, crab cakes and panna cotta and everything was awesome. Wine menu is diverse and reasonably priced. The old bank architecture is beautiful and memorable. Would definitely return!

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OT
New England
1 review
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 2

The food was disappointing and the service very spotty. The speaker was right above us and the music was pretty obnoxious. The portions were very small and the seafood did not taste fresh (calamari, shrimp). Drinks were not timely with our dinners arriving.

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S
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on January 25, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

Service was very good but the menu is a bit over priced. The selection on oysters was good but at 3 bucks a shuck and no fresh ground horseradish made it a weak value.
No blue cheese olives if you like martinis and a champagne depression glass was used as a Martini glass.
Shrimp are not over sized and again not worth 3 bucks each. Tuna blacked sandwich was very thin on the tuna.
The lobster bisque was pretty good although a bit darker in bisque color than most.
The service was the only highlight. If they have discount oyster night go then, other than that there are much better places to get oysters in boston

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SL
New England
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food
Charming
My only suggestion would be to have one red or darker beer on draft. The nitro stout was too close to a Guinness

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S
New England
35 reviews
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was wonderful! The food quality was outstanding!

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OT
Baltimore
2 reviews
Dined on January 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Friendly service after getting the table requested in my reservation. Good appetizers and we all enjoyed the main courses. Your seafood is superb!

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n
New England
4 reviews
Dined on January 17, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Went for the first time, at the recommendation of a friend, before a play at the A.R.T. I'm so glad we did. The wait-staff were friendly, the atmosphere is great, and the food was delicious. We were only in the mood for appetizers and the selection was varied and unusual. I loved the tuna tartare appetizer and the curried mussels were absolutely delicious. Great wine selection. We received a discount at the garage across the street, and the walk to the theatre was close. I'll definitely return!

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EO
1 review
Dined on January 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Hourly adds something special to the Harvard Square Food scene. From fresh, deliciously prepared seafood, to tasty vegan options, there's something for everyone at this cozy, eclectic, sepia-lit establishment. All this, plus a delightful staff make Hourly a restaurant I'll choose again and recommend to others.

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RJ
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Everything was great.

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OT
1 review
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Loved everything! Delicious food.

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a
New England
83 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Sorry to say that it was an off night for Hourly. The oysters were wonderful, as always! Dinner was not up to their usual standard. A few of us tried the New Year's Eve specials and they were just good. My husband had the salmon from the regular menu and he cleaned his plate. We'll chalk it up to a hectic night.

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DR
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Had great service at the bar... Food was excellent. The recommendations from the staff at the raw bar were top notch. Warm ambiance over all

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DO
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 5

The food was good but the seafood pasta came with a lot of pasta and very little in the way of seafood.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We had a great time.

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MD
1 review
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great dinner spot. Food was delicious! The seafood was fresh and portions perfect.

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PH
New England
1 review
Dined on December 27, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Good food. Selected on line and was not disappointed. Everyone in our party enjoyed their meals.

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h
New England
19 reviews
Dined on December 23, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

We stopped in after Revels at the Harvard Theater mainly because it was close and convenient. We were very pleasantly surprised by the food and had a great time. The oysters were excellent and the two dozen option was a very good value. The grilled octopus was some of the best I have had since the last time I was on Crete. The bronzini I had was baked in salt and I was concerned it would be too salty but it was pretty close to perfect. The waitstaff was also perfect; not hovering but available when we needed something. Everyone enjoyed their meal and it was a lovely end to the day.

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LB
New England
8 reviews
Dined on December 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent dinner and ambiance. The fish was uniquely done and very tasty. Loved it!

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AP
1 review
Dined on December 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

good food , we enjoyed the night be a little much better the service of servers

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MV
New England
5 reviews
Dined on December 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Loved this place. Fuoad was our waiter and he was fantastic. Made great recommendations for food and drinks. I can’t wait to go back.

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OT
1 review
Dined on December 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The lady at the bar was beautiful and great

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B
New England
13 reviews
Dined on December 18, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Excellent lobster roll -- very meaty and tastes fresh.

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S
New England
27 reviews
Dined on December 17, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Three co-workers out for a pre-Christmas lunch and looking for something different from our usual gathering places. Among us we had a burger, prepared just as ordered (medium rare), the Banker's Lunch (half grilled sandwich plus a bowl of clam chowder), and grilled salmon over yummy soba noodles. Everything was delicious. Our waiter was very attentive and helpful. The restaurant itself has comfy booths and has an air of sophistication that lent just the right atmosphere for a special lunch out. The menu offers sufficient variety that guests interested in spending less can be satisfied even though as one of us thinks the Hourly is pricey overall. Personally I didn't balk at the $18 salmon dish, especially as it was a special occasion. I'd definitely recommend the Hourly and will return for special occasions.

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SP
New England
12 reviews
Dined on December 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food and service were fantastic! Highly recommended.

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NN
Miami
3 reviews
Dined on December 14, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great food, beautiful restaurant!

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HS
New England
2 reviews
Dined on December 13, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Zeph was fabulous!! No rushing us out as we spent a couple of hours for a holiday luncheon while we did a yankee swap!

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D
New England
8 reviews
Dined on December 12, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

The service is very careful and attentive. I introduced two fiends this week and they liked it too. I like the limited but full menu options. I thought the cioppino was very tasty but a bit skimpy on fish.

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MK
1 review
Dined on December 9, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Lovely way to spend Sunday brunch. Friendly staff; outstanding service.

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NP
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 9, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Loved the location, atmosphere, price. Thought menu was somewhat limited and hate the use of cheesy champagne type glasses instead of traditional martini glasses!!!

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OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on December 9, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 5

The service was okay. Crab cake appetizer was excellent. However I ordered the scallops and it was lackluster. The risotto was over cooked and had no flavor. Overall a nice restaurant and I definitely want to try eating there again

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RS
New England
33 reviews
Dined on December 5, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Delightful. Very fresh seafood in a low-key atmosphere. Definitely one of the most enjoyable places for oysters in town. Went for a birthday lunch and had the Tale of Two Oysters and a Half Hourly (seafood tower). Both excellent and great portions.

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MM
New England
3 reviews
Dined on December 4, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I always really enjoy The Hourly Oyster house. I go pretty regularly. I'm a vegetarian and they always have at least two vegetarian options. And my friends who like fish say the fish is great, and my buddy who really likes burgers really enjoys their burgers. They're always nice, good bar, and the seating while sort of close together also feels like each table has privacy. I'd really recommend it.

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AL
New York Area
25 reviews
Dined on December 2, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Really good. We will be back (as we often are). The raw oysters were delicious.

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