It’s pretty safe to say that KEE Oyster House, at 126-128 E. Post Road, in White Plains, NY, is one of our very favourite places to eat. We’ve never had a bad eating experience there. In fact, we’ve frequently been transported by their culinary expertise to a place approaching ecstasy!!
Because of the nature of our individual work schedules (and the budgetary constraints involved with keeping a roof over the heads of a family of four), we’ve only ever visited KEE for Happy Hour, but they are open for both lunch and dinner, Monday through Saturday.
Initially, we thought it would just be the safest, and cheapest bet to check out a new restaurant for the first time, and see what the food/atmosphere/service/prices were like… and see if we liked them enough to ever return.
Well, we had such a good time that first Happy Hour, that we’ve been going there ever since, whenever the mood strikes us (roughly every 2 months or so), AND we freely recommend KEE to all our friends/coworkers… Often!
For all the details – regular dining hours, menus, etc., this is a link to their website
For info about the origins of the restaurant, you can check out this link to an article
And there’s a video of a visit from our local news station, News 12 Westchester- HERE
So. What is our overall opinion? Well, obviously, we love the place! We’ve compared seafood dining experiences in New Orleans and Scotland with those that we’ve had in KEE and they have come up lacking. The owners/founders of this KEE are all involved with the day to day operations of the restaurant right alongside their staff and they are ALL as pleasant and engaging a group of people as you could ever meet. Nobody is snobby or condescending here.
Let’s get to the food, shall we?
It is wonderful. Everything is fresh, flavorful, and wonderfully prepared and presented.
Now, admittedly, we only go for Happy Hour, but across our many visits, we’ve managed to sample quite a few of their dishes, and they’ve all been top-notch.
Our primary reason to go to KEE is to satisfy our regular cravings for fresh oysters (not gonna debate “yuck or yum”, in regard to oysters here – we love ‘em & that’s that!)
As you can see from the first picture, there are always oysters available from both the East and the West coast of the USA to choose from. These are expertly shucked to order and served on a bed of ice with various condiments to enhance your enjoyment of some of the freshest, tastiest oysters you’ll find anywhere.
We usually get a mixed dozen oysters – six of two different types, but we have a couple of times consumed as many as two dozen oysters in one sitting, just because we enjoyed them so much.
With a name like ‘KEE Oyster House’, it’s only natural that their menu predominantly features seafood selections, but not exclusively that. The menu is sensibly managed, and isn’t full of a thousand varied items. They do a moderate range of dishes and are therefore able to do all of them well. It probably also helps with managing inventory and wastage, but for the customer it translates to a certain reliability in the standards of quality of the food you order and then enjoy.
So – great – oysters – cool! But, what else would we recommend?
Well, so far, for us, we’ve enjoyed pretty much everything we’ve tasted. No exceptions.
Among the items we’ve tried are:
- Fish Tacos – Tasty. You get 2. You’d need at least one or two more to be properly satisfied. Not sensational, but quite nice.
- Calamari – Very enjoyable – crispy, but never cooked to the point of chewiness, which is the number 1 failure in most squid-based meal options. Just right. Served with a chili aioli sauce that is really, really nice.
- BBQ Ribs – Succulent, flavorful, fall-of-the-bone ribs that come with a whole grain mustard sauce. Not completely sold on the sauce, or its actual necessity on this plate, but the ribs we could eat all day!
- Seafood Risotto – A masterpiece of rice, squid, shrimp, and fine herbs, pure and simple. Perfect, tender textures, perfect flavours, and perfectly satisfying! This is Ken’s Number 1 thing to order when we go to KEE.
- The complimentary bags of Old Bay-seasoned, House-made potato chips that they give you at the bar to accompany whatever you’re having are a treat unto themselves. Perfectly fried and good to the last crumb!! We’ve even been known to ask for a second bag, now and then!!
As stated before, somewhere above in this post, we really only go to KEE for Happy Hour, so we should probably mention their top-notch selection of wines, beers, and all kinds of liquor. They have signature house cocktails, but can make any drink you want. Gabby usually opts for a Gin & Tonic, or a wine selection of some kind, while Ken is most likely to have a beer, or an Old Fashioned cocktail. Whatever your preference – they’ve got it covered, as you can probably tell just from the above pictures of the Bar Wall !!
It should probably be pointed out that the Happy Hour pricing is for customers who are seated at the actual bar.
Which brings us to the need to mention the opinions of some of our friends/coworkers who have also dined at KEE, who felt that the regular sit-down dining experience was perhaps a little more costly than it should be, for them, when compared to similar-level restaurants in the region. Some say that…not all. Everybody, however, seems to agree on the freshness of the food, the quality of its preparation, and the immaculate service.
One thing we noticed that nobody does in most restaurant reviews is to post a real receipt to show the REAL cost of a dining experience. Well, we found this itemized receipt from a visit last year (March 9th 2018), which is fairly representative of our usual cost, and hasn’t changed by much a year later. We went most recently on 4/5/2019, and our bill was for $79.12, so not too very different at all.
As you can see, we had a dozen and a half oysters, the Seafood Risotto, two mixed drinks, and a beer between us. Everybody has an idea of what they’re willing to spend for a quality meal out. We have never regretted a single dollar that we’ve spent at KEE. That’s all we can tell you.
We enjoy our semi-regular visits to KEE, and will do so for the foreseeable future. We acknowledge that it is by no means a cheap place to eat, but it definitely is the best of way too few quality seafood-oriented dining experiences in Westchester.
If you’re happy with okay-ish, cheap seafood – go out to City Island, in the Bronx (although, it seems to be getting costlier out there too, nowadays, with no matching uptick in food quality), or simply take yourself on over to Red Lobster (not judging – those wonderfully cheesy Cheddar Bay Biscuits are definite ‘Crack’!).
But, if you want excellent-quality, really fresh seafood that is prepared with care and flair, in a laid-back, nicely-furnished, atmospheric, classy establishment – go to KEE!
We hope this thoroughly NON-professional restaurant review has been at least interesting to you. We are not – and most likely never will be – professional restaurant (or any other type of establishment) reviewers, but we do have what we think are some worthwhile observations, recommendations, and opinions to offer about places we have been to and spent our hard-earned cash in.
Hopefully, some of you out there think so, too !!