Love on the Water: Shell & Bones, New Haven


The owners of Geronimo Tequila Bar and Southwest Grill, along with the art and soul of Executive Chef Arturo ‘Franco’ Camacho (who has rock star status among New Haven foodies) have the ultimate waterfront dining in Elm City. Picture an Architectural Digest-worthy, nautical-inspired design with an exposed kitchen, sleek fireplace, and walls of retractable glass that open to unobstructed water views – what more could a summer lover want?

The menu reads predictably: oysters, eggs Benedict, crab cakes, and meatloaf, but there is nothing predictable about Camacho’s food. The cornmeal dusted calamari is lightly fried, and uncharacteristically tender served with a spicy Asian-y dipping sauce that, if you like heat, packs a punch. I didn’t even have I-ate-fried-food guilt. I did suffer from I-ate-all-the truffle fries that came with the perfectly pink Steak Frites along with a double-decadent whammy: creamy spinach and caramelized onions. Sightings of a killer lobster salad kept coming out of the kitchen. Must be an insider thing. And now you know.

Keeping with the current dining trend, how much you want to spend is up to you. The appetizers ($10-$13ish) and entrees ($21-$38) are all shareable, but the best bet is the casual Friday, Saturday, Sunday Daytime Menu – it’s hard to find anything over $18. The Tuesday Night Prix Fixe Dinner Series is three-courses for $38, $50 with wine pairing. You can’t beat it.

Only the brave would show up without reservations. The good news is if you don’t score an outdoor table, you can breathe the salt air from every seat. They do have parking, even for boats; tie up to the Pequonnock Yacht Club adjacent to the restaurant.

Monday to Friday Happy Hour from 4 – 6pm includes $1 oysters and clams, $3 Black Hog cans, $6 house wine and house spirit cocktails. Ahoy!   100 S. Water Street, New Haven

Shell and Bones Interior