Oysters

Oyster love can go two ways. One way is to eat them raw on the half shell, arrayed in beautiful formation on crushed ice and served with exquisite mignonette sauce or cocktail sauce. They are cool, sparkling-fresh, and vary from sweet to briny, mineral-bright to creamy, depending on where they are harvested. They are sold by the dozen, and no matter where the oysters come from, they are expensive. This is fancy food, priced accordingly. The other way to love oysters is at an oyster roast, a Lowcountry ritual that is anything but fancy. Almost never enjoyed by less than a dozen or several dozen people at a time and featuring oysters by the shovelful, it revolves around the process of steaming the bivalves over smoldering charcoal until they are just ready to get pried open. More warmed than cooked, they retain all the sensual mouth feel of raw ones with the added lick of fire. Unlike neatly-marshaled urbane oysters, oyster-roast oysters look scruffy, bunches of them stuck together and smelling of the sea, all gnarled and splotched with pluff, which is the oysterman’s term for the fine silt that sticks on them when they are harvested. Pluff clings to them when they are roasted so that merely touching a cooked cluster will smudge your fingers. Participants at an oyster roast – who eat standing up around a big table heaped with oysters – will vie with each other to see who can open their oysters fastest (and therefore eat the most). It is common to have a 55-gallon can somewhere nearby or under a hole in the center of the table into which shells can be tossed. Neither of these ways of enjoying oysters on their own applies to dishes that are made with them, which are a vast world of such extreme pleasures as oyster po boys, oysters Rockefeller, oyster linguine, oyster dressing, and oyster stew.

Restaurants With This Dish

Terra

WEST COLUMBIA, SC

Local Ocean Seafoods

NEWPORT, OR

Cahill’s Chicken Kitchen

BLUFFTON, SC

Rhinehart’s Oyster Bar

AUGUSTA, GA

Augusta Fish Market & Restaurant

AUGUSTA, GA

Fish Peddler at Pacific Oyster - Oyster Stew
Fish Peddler at Pacific Oyster

BAY CITY, OR

Discuss

What do you think of Oysters?

Latest Articles & Guides

Where to Eat Breakfast in Pittsburgh | Roadfood Bests

Breakfast in Pittsburgh is especially wonderful It is one of the nation's great breakfast...

Multi-meat BBQ meal
Road Trip: Phoenix to the Grand Canyon | Roadfood Bests

Arizona Road Trip! This three day Roadfood Adventure from Phoenix to the Grand Canyon,...

Roadfood Adventures: Scottsdale to Bisbee, Arizona

Scottsdale to Bisbee, Arizona Roadfood Adventures are not just quests for great food...

Seattle’s Best Hidden Gem Restaurants | Roadfood Bests

Maybe because it is such a coffee Mecca, Seattle also happens to be one of the nation's best...

Roadfood Adventures: Winter Park to Miami, Florida

From Orlando and Winter Park down the east coast of Florida to Miami is a journey of...

Roadfood Adventures: Selma to Montgomery, Alabama

Sweet Home Alabama! from Selma – Queen City of the Blackbelt – to Montgomery -- the Heart...

×

Connect with us #Roadfood