Back to Features

Best of Olympia 2020: Chelsea Farms Oyster Bar

Writer's Pick: Best Bar for Oyster Enthusiasts

A Bloody Mary and the Raw Bar menu at Chelsea Farms Oyster Bar are a match made in heaven. Photo credit: Missy Bouchat

Recommend Article
Total Recommendations (0)
Clip Article Email Article Print Article Share Article

Anyone who has ever lived in a coastal city or town knows the biggest benefit to such a location is the abundance of local, fresh seafood. While Joint Base Lewis-McChord may not be "coastal," we are certainly close enough, and this duty station comes with a plethora of hyper-fresh fish and crustaceans, a hallmark of Pacific Northwest cuisine.

With the amount of calm bays and inlets around the Puget Sound perfect for their growth into succulent, saline morsels, your time here cannot pass without indulging in one of the area's most popular delicacies: oysters.

Opportunities to try oysters all over western Washington abound, but there are only a few farms that serve the freshest, most delicious options all while practicing environmental sustainability.

One such establishment is Chelsea Farms Oyster Bar, located inside the 222 Market downtown, just a few blocks over from Percival Landing Park.

The ambience of the restaurant is fine dining meets minimalist, with stunning oyster chandeliers hanging from the ceilings. This is the perfect location for a special date night, or when relatives come into town dying to sample the local fare from our waters.

You can get an early start with cocktails and samplings from their happy hour menu, or savor a three-course dinner from the bountiful selection of delectable seafood options. The restaurant's menu includes not only a fantastic raw oyster menu, but many other items including a Geoduck ceviche, salmon tartare, Dungeness crab, tempura battered rockfish, Kamilche Farms mussels and so many more.

If seafood isn't what you're craving, they also serve a juicy Chelsea Burger, a grown-up Mac & Cheese, lots of vegetarian options and a menu created for the kiddos.

Founded in 1987 by Linda and John Lentz, the family shellfish farm is within Eld and Totten inlets, where they grow oysters, clams and geoducks. Since its origination, the farm has prided itself on raising its shellfish in a way that teaches and educates their farmers on the importance of maintaining clean water, and putting that into practice.

Following in their parents' footsteps, new owners Shina Wysocki and Kyle Lentz (a second-generation president of the Pacific Coast Shellfish Growers Association) keep their farming family small and tightly knit, focusing on refining their oysters and creating a "boutique shellfish farm."

The official oyster and state symbol of Washington is in fact the only oyster that is native to the Pacific Northwest coast, the Ostrea Lurida. Chelsea Farms serves variations of this species, including their famous Chelsea "Gem," as well as the Olympia Oyster, a species that at one time was near extinction. Thanks to the dedication and commitment from the farmers at Chelsea Farms, it is now alive and thriving here. 

CHELSEA FARMS OYSTER BAR, inside 222 Market, 222 Capitol Way N, Olympia, 360.915.7784,

comments powered by Disqus

Site Search