The Crab Shack, Bryher
It's a simple recipe: Bryher crab, an old stone barn, and the salty tang of the ocean drifting in on the summer evening air... The Crab Shack perfectly reflects Bryher's beautiful and occasionally wild environment.
A stone's throw from the ocean, across the hotel lawn in an unassuming converted cattle shed, sits Scilly's greatest culinary secret - The Crab Shack. Top-quality Scillonian shellfish served with as little fuss as possible.
Open from May until September each year, the menu is simple enough that we chalk it up on the blackboard hanging from the rafters.
Scallops to start. Salty-sweet Bryher crab to follow - accompanied by seasonal salads, crusty bread, crispy fries and ponds of fragrant butter. Eton Mess or Cornish cheese to finish. Beer, white or rosé to accompany.
Scrubbed wooden tables and benches are your seating; strangers become friends as aprons are donned, crab picks are readied, and the copper cataplanas arrive.
As The Telegraph's Xanthe Clay once said, this is "food worth getting your hands dirty for."
So fresh you might meet the Fisherman...
We source our crab from the Pender family of Island Fish here on Bryher.
Penders have been fishing the waters of Scilly as far back as they can trace. Today, three generations of the family continue that proud tradition, setting sail each day, hauling pots from Round Island to Bishop Rock in search of the finest Scillonian seafood. Each day, we collect the crab from Island Fish in our Land Rover and trundle it down to The Crab Shack.
If the evening's diners have a particularly hearty appetite, it's not unheard of for Mark Pender to turn up in his oilies with a couple more crabs for the pot.
In 2024, The Crab Shack is open from Wednesday 8th May until Friday 13th September.
We're open Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday nights - as well as Mondays between 27th May and 26th August. We offer one sitting at 6:30 pm.
Guests staying on Bryher (including Hell Bay) can book here. Please do not use this link if you're staying on another island; you may not be able to get to us due to tides.
For those staying on Tresco, please book here. The availability shown corresponds to evenings when it is possible to boat between Tresco and Bryher. Once you've booked your table, we'll confirm your seat on the boat with Tresco Boats (payable onboard).
If you're looking to visit from a different island, you will need to arrange your own boating. Please get in touch with us to discuss this on 01720 422947.
If we're showing as full, we strongly recommend emailing us or telephoning us on 01720 422947, and we'll be happy to add you to our waiting list in case of cancellations.
Prices change with the market, but here's a rough guide; see the blackboard for the latest.
Starters and mains are meant for sharing. For puddings, we won't judge whether you share or not.
Sharing scallops (6) - £20
Sharing scallops (12) - £36
Medium crab - £30
Large crab - £40
Monster crab - £50
Salad - £6.50
Fries - £6.50
Bread - £6.50
Eton Mess - £12
Cornish cheeses - £16
The Crab Shack Booking Terms & Conditions
You can book online for groups of up to eight people. For larger groups, please call us; we cannot accept extra party members listed in the 'Comments' box.
Please be aware that tables are shared. Please note that we cannot welcome dogs at The Crab Shack.
We can cater for most dietary requirements, but due to the nature of the kitchen, The Crab Shack is not recommended for those with shellfish allergies. Please let us know of any allergies or restrictions when you book. Members of your group who do not eat shellfish can opt for a beef or vegetable kebab, but please ensure you give 24 hours' notice of this requirement. There are limited dining options for children.
On booking, you will receive a confirmation email, which also tells you how to change or cancel your booking. If you don’t receive this, please let us know.
We take your card details to secure your booking and will charge £25 per person if you forget to cancel your booking or do so less than 24 hours in advance. We always prefer not to charge, so we will do our best to re-sell your table.
Boat fares are not included in the cost of The Crab Shack and are paid directly to the boat company onboard. We will make your boating arrangements once you've made your booking.