So a Kansan, a Transylvanian, a Belgium, a Portuguese, an Oklahoman and a Russian meet in a North end Oyster Bar. Much wine, much conversation, a few high fives, much-much laughter and a waitress who kicked us out—very politely of course after all that muchness. Four of them continue the conversation at an Italian cafe over limoncello and grappa. . .
I certainly know that my mother loves oysters on the half shell. I have some vague memory of tasting one myself, but I can't nail down when or where that might have been. Friday night I ate oysters. Unless someone can remind me of another occasion, I will mark my 31st birthday as an oyster first.
Frankly, the little opaque quivering masses have always slightly frightened me. But as the restaurant was a surprise as well as our guests who had valiantly held our table in the tiny, packed place, I was caught up in the moment. The waitress came by and asked for our oyster order. Yes, I admit, as the Kansan, I was not aware that one could choose from an extensive variety of oysters. I explained that this was my first time and the waitress kindly suggested a flight of four varieties recommended for the beginner.
The first one I swallowed (on the advice of the Russian) after holding it on my tongue--briny, slimy and altogether reminiscent of olives. The second one I chewed (per the advice of the Portuguese) and I have to admit the sweetness came through when my teeth sliced through the the soft flesh. A good beginning.
My birthday wish for seafood was well satisfied this weekend: oysters, followed by red snapper and the next day, up on the shore, mussels (home cooked Belgium style) and lobsters! We had theater tickets for a show at 8 p.m. on Saturday, but once out on coast and in awe of the sunset, we decided that food and friends trump theater tickets. So we offered the tickets to friends back in the city and got to be there to witness our dinner crawl first.
A fine seafood weekend. Not to mention a memorable 31st!
Read more about our little restaurant...the Neptune.