Howard's Pub - Outer Banks Restaurants
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Howard's Pub


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1175 Irvin Garrish Highway
Ocracoke, NC 27960

Always a fun, casual, friendly place to go for a meal, Howard’s Pub is open everyday in season for lunch and dinner (usually between early March and the end of Thanksgiving weekend). Howard’s Pub is filled with an extensive collection of memorabilia from college banners, license plates and law enforcement patches from around the country multiple televisions typically broadcasting sporting events, and a nostalgic variety of “libation” signs. The Pub is noted for its vast ion of more than 200 imported, domestic, and micro brewed beers, 24 drafts, wine and cocktails. The crew at Howard’s Pub has established its “little corner of paradise” as the choice hangout for families, couples, and individuals alike. The restaurant’s various areas – including the long, wraparound bar main floor, large screened porch, Howard’s Tower and the ocean-to-sound-view deck provide plenty of room for your group. Kid’s meals are served on Frisbees with “sippy cups” and accompanied with crayons and coloring books. Howard’s Pub boasts the only raw bar on the island featuring raw or steamed clams and oysters and is home to the spicy Ocracoke Oyster Shooter, a combination of a raw oyster, hot sauce, pepper and draft beer. Appetizers range from soups, salads, and Howard’s famous peel and eat steamed shrimp to hot wings, fried pickles and tuna bites. Entrees include shrimp, oysters, and scallops crab cakes, juicy burgers, steaks, barbecued ribs and grilled, broiled or fried various catch- of-the-day recipes. The ferry ride to Ocracoke Island combined with a visit to Howard's Pub is an outing not to miss!

Howard's Pub Reviews - Add A New Review
Rating: Good Lunch on our Island Day Trip 6/26/2019
Reviewer: DeanK

We stopped in for lunch on a dreary and drizzly day. Not a lot of people were coming down from HI, so most of the island was pretty empty. We had a good meal. Portion sizes were reasonable. Nothing that really stood out as a pro or con - just seemed to be a good solid meal. They lost a star because of price. It's not a cheap lunch, that's for sure. But we did not leave with any disappointment.

Rating: Very good 10/26/2017
Reviewer: 1ADAM12

We were there the first week of June 2017. This was our first time to the island and to Howards. It was one of the best meals we had all week. Only negative I have is the mixed drinks were really watered down. We will definately go back!

Rating: Slipping...over time 12/22/2015
Reviewer: Alexy

We used to make Howard's a mandatory when hunting. After 2008 they no longer stayed open on the off season. Since then the food quality has gone down hill as well as service however the prices have definitely increased. I understand the cost issue and I do not mind paying good money for GOOD food and service but both have been lacking. i hope they can get things back on point until then try gaffers for a decent meal and a beer late or off season.

Rating: Fun! 11/18/2015
Reviewer: sanddollars

We made our first trip to Ocracoke this past summer and had a blast. We stopped for dinner at Howard's before we went back to the ferry. Our food was great. We had excellent service and enjoyed sitting in the screened porch area for our meal. Prices were average for the area in my opinion.

Rating: Love this place 8/17/2015
Reviewer: obxgirlwannabe

We stay in SNH but always take a day trip to Ocracoke just to eat at Howard's Pub (and of course the hubby has to get a t-shirt) and this year I got the fried maui maui and it was excellent. Although it was packed to the gills we got right in with only a party of 2...all the others had large groups.

Rating: Don't Bother- Overpriced, Unfriendly 5/15/2013
Reviewer: SusanM

Ate at Howard's Pub twice in May 2012. The first time was for a take out order which the hostess was rude and pointed to the gift shop attendent to place the order...she was rude as well. I check on my order and it is wrong and missing two desserts- key lime pie. I go back in and both the hostess and attendent thought it was funny by laughing when I told them it was wrong, got no apology. The portions were small and had no taste. My sister wanted to try them again before leaving and this time we dined in...same problem. Hostess, waitress rude, portions were small and no taste.

Rating: The best burgers on Ocracoke 5/31/2012
Reviewer: jackieleming

We cannot come to the island without stopping here right from the ferry - they have a way of cooking their burgers where there are done inside to perfection and the outside looks like it has grill lines but it is never crunchy or burnt. The burgers melt in your mouth !! Honestly the best burger I ever ate. The appetizers are awesome - no more expensive than any other place you go when you eat out on vacation. Great beers - so many to choose from - kid friendly, large group friendly and family friendly place to go. LOVE IT - just got back and now can't wait to come back next year. LOVE YOU HOWARDS

Rating: Not bad, but pricey 10/6/2010
Reviewer: EZJ

Our first OBX dinner was at Howard's Pub. We both enjoyed our meal. Hubby had the prime rib with a horseradish sauce, a Sunday special, and I had the Pamlico crab cakes.

Rating: Best Burger's for miles..... 8/29/2010
Reviewer: lisa

My family loves Howards Pub, I had the Cajun Burger it was awesome, only thing i can give a negative is the fried dill pickels are wonderful but the quantity that you get is a little short for the price.

Rating: Go once .... 8/10/2010
Reviewer: Bongo

just to see the place . It is not what it used to be several years ago. prices are way up and portions down , sad to see decline , I blame George W Bush for it's downturn !!

Rating: Downhill 7/31/2010
Reviewer: Jinky Beans

This is a place, when the owner was alive, that was a lot of fun. I wish I liked it more, but the fact is, now it' just a fast food mill, trying to get by on an (undeserved) reputation. Here's a hint: how many of the menu items are listed as "fresh" (as opposed to the implied frozen)? Thanks, but no thanks.

Rating: Expensive and small portions 10/16/2009
Reviewer: Beth

The food tasted okay, but 2 thin slices of corned beef on a ruben?

Rating: good food 9/28/2009
Reviewer: Lisa

ate here for the 1st time. good food. nice atmosphere.

Rating: Always solid 9/28/2009
Reviewer: MarylandMike

Visited again this summer in July. Big lunch crowd meant we had a minor wait. But, the staff was very friendly and we met some other fun folks while waiting. Food was good, beer was great. This is always a solid, fun restaurant.

Rating: Not What it Used to Be! 9/28/2009
Reviewer: Corey Ann

I've been going here for quite a few years and our visit this year was probably our last to Howard's Pub. The food isn't nearly what it used to be, the drinks are way overpriced and the service is snotty to rude. It's a shame because it used to be my favorite place to go in Ocracoke to eat.

Rating: Enjoy it each time I go... 9/28/2009
Reviewer: steveo270

I enjoy going to Howard's. The food is good, and the atmosphere is enjoyable.

Rating: good food, but.... 9/28/2009
Reviewer: Candy

I've been to Howard's four or five times now. Everything I have eaten their has been good (I love their grilled tuna sandwich with lime wasabi sauce). However, the atmosphere is very touristy and some of the food/drinks are way overpriced. Plus a few of their servers I have encountered are not very friendly. We stopped by a couple of weeks ago. My husband wanted to go back during our stay, but I talked him out of it and we went to Dajio's instead. I feel like I'm welcome there, and not an inconvenience.

Rating: Fantastic 9/28/2009
Reviewer: Justin

Visited in September and had possibly the best fries I've ever had. We had the crab dip as an appetizer and it was pretty good. I had the pulled pork sandwich and my wife had steamed shrimp. The sandwich was very good (vinegar sauce with tomato based bbq on the side) and my wife said that the shrimp were outstanding. Will definitely be back next year

Rating: We love Howard's! 9/28/2009
Reviewer: JP

We stop here at least once every trip. I can't really speak on the entire menu, since all we eat are a few dozen Oysters Rockefeller, which are to die for! Service has always been quality as well. We go off-hours since it gets pretty crowded at peak times. If you're waiting, go into the back corner of the front porch and play the swing a ring onto the hook. I never leave until I get it.

Rating: It was Great!!!! 9/28/2009
Reviewer: Linda Roe

Was there in June with some newbies to the Outer Banks and had great service, atmosphere and food.

Rating: We didn't love it! 6/26/2009
Reviewer: Brenda J

Atmosphere is simply great. We were disappointed with the food after hearing so much about it. Shrimp salad had way too much mayonnaise and shrimp were small and tough.Two non-seafood fans had burgers which were huge and looked delicious but were almost 100% uneaten. This from two of the biggest carnivores on the OBX! The fries must have been taken from two separate batches. One was crisp and delicious, the other soggy and greasy. Service was fast and friendly and we would probably give the place a second chance but we didn't feel we got our money's worth this time.

Rating: good ole Howards 5/13/2008
Reviewer: The Jones'

It's ok. Atmosphere a plus, the food is average...I think we might try the Back Porch restaurant this year when we go to Orcracoke.

Rating: Not what it used to be 3/23/2008
Reviewer: Seasentinel

Howards was a great place when I first went in 97 but now seems nothing more then a tourist attraction. Food is not the best and overpriced.

Rating: Good Food - Great Beer Selection 10/8/2007
Reviewer: Jim H

The food is downright good, the beer selection is better. The service is pretty good too. If you're into high quality food, go to Cap'n Ben's or the Back Porch, or maybe Jason's when you're in Ocracoke. The best views are at Howard's in the evening - quite a shame that Buffy died a few years back, the place has backslid a bit since, but still well worth a visit.

Rating: going down just a little 9/9/2007
Reviewer: Anonymous

Yes Howard Pub has gone down quite a bit. Yes its still has good food,a little higher than before.Was disappointed on 2 small crab balls what a joke,for the price. I've been going to Howards for 20yrs. And will continue to go. But the staff needs to inprove their American kindness, its hussle,and sometime they have made us feel it was a inconvince to wait on a large group.

Rating: going down just a little 9/9/2007
Reviewer: Anonymous

Yes Howard Pub has gone down quite a bit. Yes its still has good food,a little higher than before.Was disappointed on 2 small balls what a joke,for the price. I've been going to Howards for 20yrs. And will continue to go. But the staff needs to inprove their American kindness, its hussle,and sometime they have made us feel it was a inconvince to wait on a large group.

Rating: Great food! 7/14/2007
Reviewer: Dawn

We had a large party 6 adults + 6 kids & service was great. Very kid friendly!! Food was also great & so was the kids menu.

Rating: Great Location 4/12/2007
Reviewer: Lovin Howards

Howards has a great atomosphere and great food. Every one in my party enjoyed their meals a lot. Me being a non seafood lover LOVED the oysters rockafeller! MMM MMM GOOD! This is definatly a must go to restaurant! love that you can take the cups home with you!

Rating: It's a staple, but slowly going down hill!! 7/25/2006
Reviewer: Anonymous

Ate there twice recently, the menu items I've always enjoyed have disappeared. Mentioned to the manager, his reply was they were slimming down the menu. Bye! Bye! Shrimp Jammers.....

Rating: Nice Place 4/23/2006
Reviewer: Leslie

We had 11 people in our party and were seated right away out on the screened porch. The menu was nice. Some of the beers that we wanted to try were not in stock but had plenty of others to choose from. Our food was really good. A little disappointed in the steamed shrimp, the seasoning was just sorta dumped on top of the shrimp. The kids liked their frisbees and our waiter was nice and recommended some of the beers and food.

Rating: Tradition 4/7/2006
Reviewer: Pat Perks

It has become a tradition to eat our first meal on the island at Howard's. I love the porch, it is a good place for people watching. My son and step daughter have been trying to drink each beer at least once. We always go more than 1 time each year.

Rating: Great for the adults & the kids 9/14/2005
Reviewer: Dawn

Great menu for both the adults & the kids. Kids meals are served in a frisbee that they get to keep:) Would definately visit again on our next day trip to Ocracoke.

Rating: We usually hit Howards at least 3-4 times during our week 8/1/2005
Reviewer: Anonymous

on Ocracoke. It is a great lunch spot. The crowd can be an issue, but not too bad if you hit them in mid-afternoon. EVERYTHING is great here, and it's a fun atmosphere. It's also kinda fun late at night with live entertainment and a laid-back atmosphere.

Rating: Crime 6/17/2005
Reviewer: Andy

I'll have a Carolina Classic burger. Hold the cocaine, please.

Rating: Absolutely the best on Okracoke 4/10/2005
Reviewer: Rakbors

You won't find any better, even on the mainland. Everything is good. And it will be crowded, but that's because it is awesome. Make sure in the summer, to eat up top right at sunset. It's breathtaking.

Rating: Great Food 4/3/2005
Reviewer: Beckie

Great food...a little crowed...but you know what they say... find the crowd at dinner time and you will find the best food...I think this it THE best.!!

Rating: Great Place to Hang Out 10/26/2004
Reviewer: KT Mae

This is a wonderful Island spot. Food is good, service is good. Nice, laid-back, friendly atmosphere. We enjoy stopping here on our visits to Ocracoke.

Rating: Food OK, but overpriced 10/24/2004
Reviewer: Leon

We ate lunch at Howards in Sept of 2004. Food was average, service excellent but it was way overpriced for the portions and quality. We payed over $50 for 3 adults and 1 toddler without any alcoholic drinks and 1 appetizer.

Rating: A must-go-and-eat-and-drink place 3/4/2004
Reviewer: Buddy Revell

Howard's is absolutely a tradition with us !! We come over on the ferry early, then pull off the road to indulge in some (occasionally nude- no one's around!)sun n'fun, then head to Howard's for a nice cold beer or three, a softshell crab sandwich, some conch fritters and japaleno poppers, all on the huge screened-in porch, no matter how hot or cold it is.You can kick back on that porch with the saltwater drying in your hair, sipping a cold beer, and with the ceiling fans whipping up a bit of a breeze, you'll swear there's no place like this on earth.I do wish they still had the big adirondack chairs and rockers... It's a great place to head to, if a bit crowded in the summer. But you can always kick back with a refreshment on their porch while waiting for your table....GO!!! GO NOW!!!

Rating: Howard's 1/3/2004
Reviewer: Anonymous

Have eaten lunch here several times for lunch. Was great, but always crowded.

Rating: No, really, you HAVE to go here. 12/27/2003
Reviewer: Beth

We decided to take a day trip to Ocracoke on our most recent trip in December 2003. Once we got there, we found most everything closed...except Howard's! My boyfriend, Dan, and I went in for lunch. I had heard that this was a great place to try, but I wasn't expecting what we got. First off, the service was great. Our server was friendly and answered several questions about the beaches in the area. When we ordered, Dan asked for the Oyster Shooter. He says, "I loved them both...the shooter and the waitress." Okay, I'll admit she did have pretty eyes. He ordered the oysters rockefeller and enjoyed them greatly. He's had them in several places and says these were done to perfection. I ordered the Blue Bacon Burger. Slices of blue cheese, bacon, grilled onions...easily the BEST burger I've ever had anywhere. Granted, Ocracoke is a drive (especially if you're staying on the northern beaches), but I would strongly suggest making the trip. We plan on going again when we return to the area in August 2004...this time we're taking random family members!

Rating: A Must Stop 11/18/2003
Reviewer: roc-obx

We always have to stop here on any trip to Ocracoke, but I wish they didn't take the rocking chairs on the eat-in porch away!! Food is standard, but the atmosphere makes up for everything. Ocracoke wouldn't be the same without Howard's!

Rating: Island tradition 11/17/2003
Reviewer: Belle1952

Traditional stop on our trip to Okracoke. Something for everyone on thier menu. Island atmosphere can't be beat.

Rating: Like beer? Stop here 11/16/2003
Reviewer: Seadog

If ya like beer, this is a must stop if you go to Ocracoke. Their beer menu is twice a big as their food menu. Get a pitcher and they give you the good ol' Howard's Pub plastic cups to take home -- a staple in our cupboard. Nothing fancy and the food is definitely not gourmet but it's just a neat place to be. You can eat inside or on the big screened porch. We recommend the BBQ pork sandwiches and cole slaw. Their claim to fame is that they are open every day of the year -- even during hurricanes.

Rating: Very good 11/15/2003
Reviewer: Michelle

Another great place to eat in a laid-back atmosphere.