Recently ranked in the Top 10 by USA Today, Seattle is one of the best places in the US for people who like to slurp up all the goodness of oysters on the half shell. Here are some of our favorites.

The Walrus and the Carpenter
4743 Ballard Avenue NW
Seattle, WA 98107

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USA Today, in its review of the book Shucked: Life on a New England Oyster Farm by Erin Byers Murray (St. Martin’s, $25.99), asked the author about her favorite oyster bars. She put Seattle on the map for excellent, locally based oysters at this Ballard spot. She says the Pacific oysters are sweeter than Atlantic oysters, which tend to have a briny flavor.

Elliott’s Oyster House
1201 Alaskan Way, Pier 56
Seattle, WA 98101

Not to be outdone, Elliott’s, on Pier 56, has garnered the attention of Coastal Living magazine. A sustainable restaurant, Elliott’s boasts an extensive oyster menu (updated twice daily). It includes over 30 varieties — from the buttery Olympia to the sweet European Flat. Coastal Living says, “Try oysters with the mignonette topping (frozen red wine vinegar and champagne), and, if you still have room, order dessert.”

Brooklyn Seafood, Steak & Oyster House
1212 Second Avenuw
Seattle, WA 98101

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Praised by Coastal Living magazine, the Seattle Times and others, “The Brooklyn” is located near Pike Place Market. It features the largest rotating selection of fresh oysters in Seattle. The menu is updated regularly, and the oysters are always fresh and regional.

Shuckers at the Fairmont Olympic Hotel
411 University Street
Seattle, WA 98101

Boasting the beautifully carved oak paneling and unique tin ceiling of the haberdashery it once was in the 1930’s, Shuckers Oyster Bar in Seattle is one of Seattle’s oldest and most pre-eminent oyster bars. With a daily menu featuring a selection of fresh fish and seafood, Shuckers brims with 13 different kinds of oysters prepared nine different ways and features local artisan microbrews. Shuckers will be undergoing annual maintenance upkeep between January 9 – 19, 2012. They will reopen for lunch beginning January 20.

Taylor Shellfish at the Melrose Market
1521 Melrose Ave
Seattle, WA 98122

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A new retail market located on Capitol Hill in The Melrose Market. While here browse Taylor’s selection of the freshest shellfish in town. They carry a variety of oysters as well as claims, Mediterranean mussels, geoduck and scallops. Pick some up to take home, or enjoy a platter of fresh shucked oysters from Taylor’s oyster bar and a fine selection of wine and beer, all available in house during Taylor’s Happy Hour, Monday through Friday from 2:00pm – 4:00pm.