A typical Sunday in the fall often includes football, beer, and some variation of fried, greasy, food. As much as I do love a nice debauchery of the fried stuff once in a while, on this particular Sunday I wanted nothing more than a hearty helping of Oysters! Being that my partner in crime, the oystercracker was nowhere to be found, I was on solo mission. There was also the football factor that needed to be addressed. Not only did I want my oysters, but I wanted them while watching football. And so I put on my jacket and headed to a local store on an oyster run. I guess I would have to work for my oysters and shuck them myself. I am not a pro by any means, but good enough to enjoy a dozen without losing a hand.
In the past, I would typically visit Chelsea Market for my take home oysters. On any given day, the Lobster Place has an average of eight different types. In fact, for an extra twenty-five cents, they will shuck the oysters for you. But this time, I decided to venture to the nearby, newly opened Eataly and check out what selection they had in their fish department.
Unlike Chelsea Market, Eataly only has two or three different varieties. But the selection normally changes daily. The choices that Sunday included Kumamoto, Belon, and Wellfleet. The option of Belon really excited me. It is very rare to find these oysters for sale in the NY area. Equipped with a dozen oysters (6 belons, 6 kumototos), a glove and a shucking knife, I proceeded to make my Sunday football snack plate. And what could be more beautiful than a dozen freshly shucked oysters resting on a bed of ice?
The Kumomotos were average size, and had their natural deep cup. It is always a bit of a challenge to get them open. The oyster had a bit more of a mineral finish than usual. And it lacked some of that fruity flavor. The Belon is a much larger oyster, with a flat shell. Opening these oysters proved a lot easier than the kumamotos. The flavor was a bit salty, with a prevalent copper taste. While the Maine Belon oyster is one of my favorite, it still plays second fiddle to its French original. Unfortunately importation of these oysters to the US is prohibited. One day I will need to return to France and enjoy the Belon in its natural setting. But for now the alternative will do. Even though my team lost that day, nothing could take away the pleasure I endured eating my oysters.
All three oysters (wellfleet, kumamoto, belon) were $1.50 a piece.
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