In excess: Island Creek Oyster Night at SDLT
In The Physiology of Taste, 19th-century epicure Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin recounts dining with a Monsieur Laperte, who consumed 32 dozen oysters before their meal. While the French aristocracy may surpass us in quantity consumed, we have oysters of incredible quality in American waters.
In the U.S. there are 3 main species of oysters—Pacific, Eastern, and Olympia. Within these species are numerous varieties based on the oysters’ place of origin, each possessing subtle differences in texture, flavor, and color. One of the best-loved local oysters are Island Creek from Duxbury. The first Island Creek oysters were planted by Skip Bennett in 1992 and today Island Creek, Inc. distributes over 100,000 oysters each week. Sweet, delicate, and refreshing, Island Creek oysters have appeared at the White House and on the menus of Thomas Keller’s restaurants The French Laundry in Napa Valley and Per Se in New York. In Boston, Island Creek oysters are delivered to local restaurants particularly fresh by the beloved C.J. Husk, otherwise known as “The Oyster Dude.”
While oysters are available throughout the year, they are traditionally thought to be best in fall and winter months. Island Creek oyster farm hand and freelance writer Erin Murray explains, “In order to prep for winter, [oysters] bulk up on glycogen, a form of glucose, which they store until the spring when they start feeding again—just like a grizzly bear. So from the time they go dormant until the spring, all of that glycogen makes them taste really sweet.” (Check out Erin’s blog Shucked for more oyster info and adventure.) Oysters are also great in winter because they contain more zinc per serving than any other food, which is important for immunity.
Although often associated with champagne and pearls, oysters are above all fun! Give Monsieur Laperte a run for his money at Sel de la Terre Back Bay on January 31st for Island Creek Oyster Night. In the lively downstairs bar, C.J. will be shucking oysters until the creek runs dry. Also snack on SDLT charcuterie and sip exotic Leblon Cachaça cocktail specials.
7 p.m. until 10 p.m.
$22 per guest