Oysters have once again become the bivalve of the hour, the defining protein of the age, expressing everything we want life and food to be right now. Luxurious but unpretentious, decadent but healthful, oysters are the must-order—from the basis of le grand plateau de fruits de mer at a New York institution like Balthazar to seafood-centric newbies like The Ordinary in Charleston, South Carolina. Oysters are even quasi-wild and sustainable, not to mention downright good for the oceans. There’s something sweetly deceptive about their simplicity, too.
Five oyster species are farmed in the U.S. That’s all.
A handful of oyster farms still have the clean, shallow, brackish waters required for local species to spawn wild without human help, accounting for about 5 percent of all market oysters. But the vast majority of American growers buy seed from one of dozens of hatcheries on both coasts. Some are tiny, like the hatchery Jones operates out of an old shipping container, and some are much bigger, like Bay Shellfish Company in Florida.
All hatchery workers start the process like Jones does, bringing male and female oysters together in tanks, under conditions that induce them to spawn, and then nursing millions, or even billions, of larvae to a viable size that set to become “seed.” That seed—microscopic but adult-looking oysters—gets shipped to farmers who raise and brand it either with a geographical designation like Bluepoint or Wellfleet, or with a farm-specific trade name like Sweetwater, from California’s Hog Island Oyster Company.
The one-of-a-kind Totten Inlet C. virginica oyster is an East Coast species raised in Puget Sound.
The science behind oysters: 4th-gen shellfish farmer Paul Taylor and daughter Brittany inspect the Taylor Shellfish oysterseed nursery in Shelton, WA.
Nick Jones, Jones Family Farms, harvesting shellfish in Shoal Bay on Lopez Island.
After “aging” for two years, the shells are used to give oyster larvae a place to set and beome seed. Farmers plant this seed in their own waters and then mostly leave it alone, allowing it to feed on natural phytoplankton. Most of the oyster half shells that we slurp down with cold Sancerre—or iced vodka shots, as the case may be—were harvested between one and two years of age, having acquired a taste and texture unique to where they matured.
This is the so-called merroir effect, analogous to terroir in winemaking: Local maritime conditions, including salinity, local phytoplankton species, and tidal flow, give oysters from
each and every farm and region a distinctive character. After all, East Coast oysters like Malpeque (Prince Edward Island), Bluepoint (Connecticut and Long Island, New York), Wellfleet (Massachusetts), Rappahannock (Virginia), and Apalachicola (Florida) are all the same C. virginica species, only raised in different taste-defining localeThere was a time, of course—and not so long ago—when oystermen simply waded into the vast, clean tidal flats of great waters like the Long Island Sound and the Chesapeake and San Francisco bays, plucking up millions of wild oysters. The estuary of the lower Hudson River alone once had 350 square miles of wild-spawning C. virginica oyster beds, making preindustrial New York City the greatest oyster-consuming city of all time. But pollution, landfill, and overharvesting killed New York’s last wild beds by 1927. Out West, oyster-loving Gold Rush prospectors did the same, devouring all the native Olympia oysters first in San Francisco Bay and then clear up the coast to Washington, thanks to schooners that raked coves and then sailed quickly south. Inside Puget Sound, pulp mill pollution killed off almost all of the Olympia oysters until 1957, when the mills closed, and local waters rebounded.
-excerpt from article "Oysterland: A Journey to the Heart of Bivalve Country" by Daniel Duane 2/18/14. See link for full article : How oysters are farmed and processed
10 Places In The U.S. You’ll Want To Visit Right Now
From amber waves of grain to purple mountains majesty, if you haven’t seen these 10 U.S. gems, you’re missing out. Although, with so many daily nonstop flights out of NYC, you’ll see the fruited plains quicker than you’ll catch a cab on a rainy day.
Sarasota, FL was named #1 on this list by JetBlue on Buzzfeed in 2013! Just another accolade to add to the list of incredible honors that Sarasota and Siesta Key have received in the past years. Come and see what all the buzz is about!
Sarasota has a surprising art scene. There are tons of art galleries as well as an opera house. You can also rent a boat to go parasailing and scuba diving cheaply, something that is obviously rare for most vacationers.
See the full list at: ten placesin the us you'll want to visit right now
We took down all the dollars at SKOB for renovations and updates to the building. We saved a bunch, but we also sent $7600 to the bank!
We'd like to thank all of our incredible guests for their amazing contributions to making this such a success! We hope to add more $1 and make a new start to the SKOB $1 hanging tradition!
Small Business Saturday is a day dedicated to supporting small businesses across the country.
Founded by American Express in 2010, this day is celebrated every year on the Saturday after Thanksgiving.
This year, Small Business Saturday is on November 30th.
SKOB is a participant in Small Business Saturday and we encourage you to shop small and support local! Siesta Key has the local, smalltown feel and we hope to keep it that way!
Siesta Key Oyster Bar
5238 Ocean Blvd
Siesta Key, FL 34242
Siesta Key Oyster Bar likes to keep things fresh and exciting for our favorite customers! To do this, we use only the freshest ingredients and keep the menu fresh and new to always have something mouth-watering for you to try!
Chef Douglas has now prepared for us a Mahalo pizza with hawaiian flair and crispy crust to delight your tastebuds.
He has also made a new addition to the sandwich menu with a teriyaki glazed chicken breast topped with fresh avocado, called the Maui Wowie.
The third and limited time-item on the menu is the shrimp and avocado ceviche. This is an in-house family favorite. We can't wait to share it with you!
Come in today!
5238 Ocean Blvd
Siesta Key, FL 34242
Honored as a Top Performing Restaurant as Reviewed by Travelers on the World’s Largest Travel Site
Siesta Key, FL – 27, June, 2013 – Siesta Key Oyster Bar, to locals “SKOB”, announces that it has received a TripAdvisor® Certificate of Excellence award. The accolade, which honors hospitality excellence, is given only to establishments that consistently achieve outstanding traveler reviews on TripAdvisor, and is extended to qualifying businesses worldwide. Only the top-performing 10 percent of businesses listed on TripAdvisor receive this prestigious award.
To qualify for a Certificate of Excellence, businesses must maintain an overall rating of four or higher, out of a possible five, as reviewed by travelers on TripAdvisor, and must have been listed on TripAdvisor for at least 12 months. Additional criteria include the volume of reviews received within the last 12 months.
“SKOB is pleased to receive a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence,” said Beth Owen-Cipielewski, Owner at Siesta Key Oyster Bar. “We strive to offer our customers a memorable experience, and this accolade is evidence that our hard work is translating into positive reviews on TripAdvisor.”
“TripAdvisor is delighted to celebrate the success of businesses around the globe, from Sydney to Chicago, Sao Paulo to Rome, which are consistently offering TripAdvisor travelers a great customer experience,” said Alison Copus, Vice President of Marketing for TripAdvisor for Business. “The Certificate of Excellence award provides top performing establishments around the world the recognition they deserve, based on feedback from those who matter most – their customers.”
Joining the ranks of other great Bourbons, Knob Creek and Makers Mark, now you can taste Woodford Reserve yourself at SKOB! And, it was named official Bourbon of the 2012 Kentucky Derby.
We have donated to Venice High School Football, Easter Seals, A liver transplant victim, East Bay Little League, A 6 month old baby girl who needed a heart value operation, and this years Cancer event for David Rizzo. We take philanthropy very passionately and are honored to help our friends.