Known for its no-frills service, creek side sunset views, graffiti-covered walls (where customers signed their names) and the oyster room (where steaming mollusks were shoveled directly from the fire pit onto rough wooden tables). The restaurant won a prestigious James Beard Foundation Award in 2006 when it was named one of eight "American Classic Restaurants" that "boasts timeless appeal and quality food that reflects the history and character of its community." Owner Robert Barber accepted the award in New York City, wearing a tuxedo and white shrimping boots. Barber's grandparents opened the restaurant in 1946 on the site of their fish camp.
Bowens Island Restaurant currently accepts cash and checks only.