The Local Oyster is Opening a Seafood Bar at the Former Rallo’s Diner

| September 23, 2020 | 0 Comments

The Local Oyster, a seafood bar with locations at Mount Vernon Marketplace and Arlington, VA, is opening its third location at 838 E. Fort Ave. in Riverside/Locust Point. The two-story, 3,800 sq. ft. building was the former home of Rallo’s Restaurant and Big Matty’s Diner, but it has been vacant since 2015.

The building is owned by War Horse, which co-developed Anthem House across the street and A2 by Anthem House located in Rallo’s former parking lot behind the restaurant building. The former Thornton’s Pub liquor license in Locust Point was transferred to 838 E. Fort Ave. in 2015 as Thornton’s was converted into a residence.

The Local Oyster will take on a full renovation of the building which will include a first-floor bar and dining area, a second-floor dining area and game room likely including floor shuffleboard, and a back patio. The second floor will have a balcony that can be seen at the entrance to the restaurant.

The Local Oyster partner Nick Schauman said the vibe will be casual and the design will have a very Baltimore feel with many of Schauman’s favorite “tchotchkes” such as bobble heads, sports memorabilia, and oyster buckets. It will have TVs so patrons can watch sports. There will likely be acoustic music performances inside.

The menu will feature oysters from sister company True Chesapeake Oyster Co., which has an oyster farm in St. Mary’s County and a restaurant in Hampden. Along with oysters, menu items will include popular dishes from its other restaurants such as crab cakes, Schauman’s mother’s and grandmother’s crab soup recipe, crab pretzels, fish and chips, fried seafood baskets, raw clams, and steamed seafood including crab legs, whole lobsters, mussels, and clams.

The bar will have local beers, wines, and mixed drinks such as fresh fruit crushes and mules.

The Local Oyster hopes to open in April and will serve lunch and dinner daily. It will also serve a brunch menu on the weekends.

Schauman said the restaurant business has “not been easy” during the COVID-19 pandemic and said the rules have been changing every day. He said they have been kept afloat by a good following of regulars. The Local Oyster team believes things will be closer to normal when they open in the spring.

The Local Oyster and True Oyster Co. partnered with the Ed Reed Foundation in recent months to deliver 10,000 meals to needy families.

The was first reported by the Baltimore Business Journal 

Photos of the building from 2018

Photo from The Local Oyster Facebook page

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