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Awful Arthur's Oyster Bar & Restaurant


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MP 6 Beach Rd
Kill Devil Hills, NC 27948


Fresh seafood is certainly another ingredient in our recipe for success: our menu is brimming with delectable entries straight from the sea. And fresh seafood is just the beginning of delicious fare you'll enjoy when you and your family and friends dine with us.

Or it could be the great atmosphere and wonderful people you"ll find inside our doors. Why not step inside and decide for yourself exactly what makes dining at Awful Arthur's a special experience.

Awful Arthur's Oyster Bar & Restaurant Reviews - Add A New Review
Rating: Lived up to their name... :( 11/6/2014
Reviewer: Avon Lady

Crab cake sandwich looked & tasted like it was previously frozen the roll was so large I couldn’t get my mouth around it. I tried to pull some of the bread out of the roll, but ended up just eating the crab & only because I was so hungry… not because it was good.

Rating: Great place. 7/15/2014
Reviewer: Biggs

I've been going there for years. Never had a bad meal, im sure it's possibke just never happened to me.
It's not gourmet, its not plush, its a sandy beach raw bar. If you're the person who goes to the OBX and complains about things like sand in your car then stay away. If you love the sand, beach, sun and salt, this is your place, They have great seafood basics and some other special offerings. If you don't like Awful Arthurs you shouldnt be in the OBX!

Rating: So-So 2/10/2013
Reviewer: PaulZ

We have been to AA roughly 4 times over the past 12 years. We like the atmosphere and even though the wait is long (60-90 mins), which we expect since we go during prime time, we always pass the time.

The food is just so-so. Some in our group of 12 enjoy it a lot and some not so much. But no one will exclaim YOU HAVE TO GO HERE!. It just seems like at least one visit is a must just to say you've been.

Service is decent. Cleanliness isn't a top priority. I get the sense of it being dirty. Tables not cleaned quickly. Floor is generally messy as well.

My personal rating would have been lower but because opinions in our group vary, I put it right in the middle.

Reviewer: BeachBumBob

My family made tradition of stopping here first thing on many summer trips. We always loved the food - they have great crab legs and beer specials. If your hungry for light fare - eat up top and enjoy the view of the ocean and Avalon Pier! It's the best way to finally unwind from the drive and realize you're on vacation!

Rating: Great Fresh Seafood 7/13/2012
Reviewer: PaulieWalnuts

Always go for the fresh shucked oysters and they never disappoint. Also recommend the barracuda bites.

Rating: Not very good 4/25/2012
Reviewer: obxwanderer

I thought the food was tasteless and my entree was almost cold by the time it got to me, I would not say it's the worst place but it's close.

Rating: Awful is really Awesome 8/29/2011
Reviewer: Smiling In The Outer Banks

I have been going to Awful Arthur's every year since I began visting the Outer Banks and it was just as good this past summer as it was every other time. Anyone who says otherwise doesn't know what they are talking about. Can't wait to go again in the summer of 2012!!!

Rating: Fun place 10/7/2010
Reviewer: Vicky

I have been coming to Awful Arthur's since they opened. Back in the day it was one of our favorite hang outs because they had good cheap beer and reasonable raw bar seafood. Went there October 2010. First visit we sat downstairs and had good service, decent food, nothing exciting but good. Next time we went upstairs and just had a good time. I was happy hour with cheap Coronas, oysters, etc. I would not go to this place for a "gourmet meal" but for beers, fun and appetizer seafood. Great view upstairs.

Rating: BEST food in the Outer Banks! 4/28/2010
Reviewer: Shawn Denise Vaughn

We ate there 3 times during bike week. Bisque, oysters, steamed shrimp and crab cake sandwich were to die for. Service was GREAT. Friendly atmosphere. Always welcoming! Will go back again and again!

Rating: Not to Awful 4/19/2009
Reviewer: DeJean

Have had pretty good meals. The best was for the 100th yr of flight. Great portions. Ever since then it has been OK. Could have got the same quality in Central VA. Might go back for lunch, Maybe.

Rating: going downhill 10/12/2008
Reviewer: Beth

It was just okay. The crab dip was cold with burned chips, had to send it back. New batch much better. Clams and oyster portions not a generous as before. I used to love the bisque, it was also not up to par. Maybe an off day.

Rating: It's OK 9/11/2008
Reviewer: Colleen

They have OK food. Great view from upstairs, but they have a VERY limited menu there. You can only get the full menu downstairs.

Rating: Steamy! 8/24/2008
Reviewer: Kristine

I don't know or care about the rest of the menu, but these guys know how to steam some shellfish. Awesome!

Rating: Awful Arthur's is right 3/23/2008
Reviewer: Seasentinel

I tried this place out when I first visited the OBX in 1997 and it was "ok". Next time I tried it out was in 2002 and the food was not good and overpriced for what you got on the plate. The meal was more like an appetizer. I waited 4-5 yrs before I tried it out again and it was worse like others said. Dinner portions were like an appetizer again and the food was horrible. I think I'd gotten better taste from something frozen from the grocery store. Service was not good either. I will never eat there again

Rating: This is the worst place on obx 2/13/2008
Reviewer: NY,NY Vacationer

The shrimp have a real bad after taste.
They are no way fresh

Rating: pityfull 12/29/2007
Reviewer: Mike

worse&worse every year.wife bit into spoiled scallops,waitress wanted to argue.seems since arthur died place became a shake down tourist trap

Rating: Surf and Turf 9/29/2007
Reviewer: William Klotz

On their menu they say you can add a 6 oz filet to " any one of the above" seafood dishes - but when you try to do that they say that they mean you can add "one soft shell crab" or "one crab cake", etc to the filet plate, quite a different thing - I spoke to the manager but apparently he plans to continue with the same misleading wording - we saw their menu in our motel, but their actual menu listed all entrees $2.00 higher

Rating: Disappointed 9/14/2007
Reviewer: Ann

Good description, frat house, loud guys doing shooters at the bar. Food pre-frozenand very bland. Don't waste your money if your looking for a meal.

Rating: Not worth the trip 9/12/2007
Reviewer: Martha

Although one of my friends told me this is his favorite place in the Outer Banks, I did not like it. I should have known better because he is not a gourmet. The food was mediocre. I expected more from a place at the beach, such as superlative seafood. I think the fish had been frozen before cooking. The ambiance was like a frat house--young guys at bar doing shooters. We had to wait a long time for a table, and it was not worth it.

Rating: only ate here once 9/12/2007
Reviewer: pittguy25

but i had the seafood platter and couldnt complain

Rating: Finally good seafood at OBX 9/2/2007
Reviewer: vickib

We tried Jimmy's Seafood Buffet & Carolina Seafood Buffet and they were terrible. Awful Arthurs was EXCELLENT!! The seafood alfredo and steamed spiced shrimp was SOOO

Rating: awesome!!! 8/25/2007
Reviewer: obxking87

I've been there at least a hundred times and the food is excellent. They play great music up at the bar and the atmosphere is always great.

Rating: Wow..must have been off days 5/23/2007
Reviewer: Jennifer

I've been there so many times I can't count..and I've always had great service, good food and a fantastic time..don't understand all these negative reviews.
I will continue to go there, always!

Rating: Take out food, little service 4/11/2007
Reviewer: Rob

We had a carry out meal from AA. Food was okay/good (3 stars), service was poor.

The lady who handled the take out orders was rude. When questioned about missing side orders, her response was denial "I know they're in there. Show me the order." After retrieving the bags of food, she proceeded to rummage through all the containers.

She showed me the missing side orders, located underneath an entree. I said "Thanks. I never would have thought to look there." Her response was a snarled "I'm not in charge of filling take out orders!"

Maybe she was having a bad day. Don't know if it is worth a return trip to see if this was an unusual event.

Rating: save yourself 2/12/2007
Reviewer: murf

I see someone removed my post when i said this earlier, maybe i will make it shorter. Bathrooms are dirty, feel dirtier coming out than going in. Food is mediocre along with service. I rated this as good years ago, but now i tend to avoid the place. bottomline, cold beer, good bisque, they do have seafood, take antibacterial cleaner with you.

Rating: They call Fresh Frozen? 10/13/2006
Reviewer: Disappointed

Went there in August and we were expecting to get some fresh steamed shrimp, sat at the bar downstairs. We were first were disappointed to see a stack of boxes of frozen shrimp in the sink behind the bar with running water over the boxes to thaw the shrimp out. Though the beer was good, the service stunk. We had a bar tender that kept commenting how unhappy he was and that he wanted to quit but the owners kept pleading with him to stay. Was not impressed by his comedic activites and sayings either. He was more interested in being a comedian instead of keeping my beer full. If the shrimp are frozen at least let me believe that they are fresh and thaw the shrimp in another sink. I probably wouldn't be able to tell the difference from fresh or frozen, but when you advertise fresh don't let me see frozen. Maybe it should be freshly steamed shrimp, instead of fresh shrimp.

Rating: Don't Forget the Locals 9/11/2006
Reviewer: keywestlady

Make sure your entire party is there when you want to be seated. If not, you will have to wait until everyone is there. What I mean is if you will have 6 people in your party and ony 5 show up together you will have to wait for the sixth person before you can go on the wait list to be seated. I understand when it is peak season and every table is taken and people waiting in line. But during the off season or especially in the dead of Winter when the locals are the only ones that keep your busines going you would think things would be different. In the future I will not return to Awful Arthur's. The food is OK and is definitely not worth waiting for the sixth person to arrive before we can be seated and have a drink.

Rating: Nothing Special 7/29/2006
Reviewer: Anonymous

Maybe I expected too much from all of the other reviews but I thought it was just ok. We were there for lunch and fish sandwich was ok, Softshell crab was good and crab bisque was very good (crab, cream and sherry- hard not to like).
I think that this is one of those traditional spots that people visit each time they are there, but maybe it's that fact that they're at the OBX that make it's so good, not the food. Maybe dinner is better.

Rating: try take-out 7/5/2006
Reviewer: darrenh

The waits, even if you get there kind of early, can be loooonngg. We have ahd take-out the last two trips and it was really good -- and fast.

Rating: awesome food and great atmosphere! 6/6/2006
Reviewer: caroline

been going here for years and it never fails us!

Rating: Best Oysters in the OBX 11/16/2005
Reviewer: Dave

I've been goimg to Awful Arthur's for years and have never had a bad experience, either with the food or atmosphere. They have the best Crab Meat 'n' Butter anywhere and their Fried Oysters are unsurpassed. Great wait staff and bartenders as well.

Highly recommended!

Rating: Old Bay 4/15/2005
Reviewer: JockeySocks

This joint has some cool bartenders. They know how to STEAM SOME SHRIMP!

Rating: The bisque is to die for!!! 11/3/2004
Reviewer: Soundliving

Good food. We went early, so the place hadn't gotten crowded yet. Friendly atmosphere.

Rating: Not as good as years past 10/26/2004
Reviewer: Mary-Ohio

OK, they say familiarty breeds contempt. Maybe it's because I've been to Arthurs every year for ever! But this year the quality just didn't seem the same. The meals we're just ho hum and that's a shame 'cause we've always loved AA's in the past. Maybe we just need to take a little break and come back in a year or two. I feel like a traitor but we just wern't that impressed this year.

Rating: gotta love arthurs!! 8/1/2004
Reviewer: beth

great bisque and steamers!! only drawback is too smokey!!!!!

Rating: never dissapointed 7/22/2004
Reviewer: murfdog

always good, not too pricey either

Rating: five star boths ways 7/6/2004
Reviewer: darrenh

We ate at AA twice, once in and once take out. Both were great. Was pleasantly surprised at the good kids menu. My wife had the crab au gratin when we ate there. Nice flavor, and the crab came through. I know because she could only eat half of it and I had the rest. Crab cake sandwich also was very good. My son enjoyed the kids fish dinner. Set-up for take-out very convenient with separate window outside etc. Quick too. As we were leaving the beach, even my 4-year-old daughter wanted "to go to Arthur's" again.

Rating: FIVE STARS AND THEN SOME 3/23/2004
Reviewer: LuAnn

Any type of seafood - they got it. And it's the best around. The Best. I have yet to be at a restaurant that can duplicate it (except Bad Barracudas). The employees couldn't be more helpful. They're friendly and knowlegeable. They make you feel like a regular. The wait is worth it. Don't go to the OBX without a stop at Awful Arthurs.

Rating: It's not vacation 11/18/2003
Reviewer: Lynn

Without a night at AWFUL ARTHUR'S. We always start off upstairs in the bar, which is a good time. Never have had a bad meal and the serve is very good.

Rating: Bisque to die for. 11/16/2003
Reviewer: Seadog

Absolutely the BEST crab/lobster bisque you'll ever have!!!! We've never had a bad meal at Awful Arthurs and make it a must-stop every trip. Nice little gift shop next door too.

Rating: Alway's a favorite! 11/14/2003
Reviewer: Anot

We go at least once during our week, great for the kids. I'm lucky that I live close to an Awful Authers in Charlottesville VA so I can go any time!!!

Rating: good food 11/10/2003
Reviewer: goeatin

The name is a keeper. The food is always fresh but be careful if you order a sandwich and fries. The fries are extra. The raw bar is overpriced.

Rating: If this is awful then I want to be awful 11/9/2003
Reviewer: Robert

AA's is one of our favorite places to go. Loud and crowded but who cares. Friendly people, family atmosphere. Great teeshirts.

The food is your basic pub fare. The spiced shrimp is excellent....order it by the pound!

Fair selection of beer.

Rating: Awfully Good Food 11/8/2003
Reviewer: Jeanette

Every time that we visit OBX, Awful Arthur's is part of our trip. The absolute best shrimp ever! The atmosphere is laid back, and family friendly. Great food, and we can relax and not worry about the kids making too much noise!

Rating: How can you not love Awful Arthur's? 11/7/2003
Reviewer: Mark & Maggie

We hit Awful Arthur's at least once every year on vacation. The Oysters with a little tobasco are always awesome, and the beer is real cold. It's not fine dining but it sure is fun. Thank God they made it through Isabel. Two thumbs up!