For the family pre-Easter celebration, we selected The Oyster Society for the complete seafood dining experience. And we were looking forward to their weekly selection of raw oysters.
Food experts consider oysters to be one of the healthiest seafoods, and they are enjoyed by many all over the world. According to food experts, oysters are low in calories and fat while packed with essential vitamins and minerals. Six medium oysters contain roughly 50 calories, six grams of protein, one gram of fat and five grams of carbohydrates.
You know that it takes an oyster five years to grow – and then they are eaten in just a matter of seconds. If you are an oyster lover, each bite is like a fresh taste of the ocean. The taste is a combination of the tang of sea salt and brine, eaten raw and fresh and flavored only by a squeeze of fresh lemon.
For the appetizer we settled on the Chef’s dozen, a selection of four varietals of oysters served with several homemade condiments such as mango, sweet chili, watermelon, and homemade bourbon sweet sauce. To savor the oyster’s natural “liquor” I preferred a light squeeze of lemon.
Oyster Geography. According to food experts, each oyster has its own unique taste depending on where it is grown. The Oyster Society offers a good selection from both the West Coast (Pacific) and the East Coast (Atlantic). It is known that 95 percent of the oysters that we eat are farmed and NO, these are not the kind that typically grow pretty pearls.
The Atlantic oysters come from Canada all the way down the East coast and across the Gulf (Bluepoint, Wellfleet, Malpeque, Beausoleil) and generally taste crispier and brinier. They have smooth shell ridges and are tear-drop shaped.
Under the East Coast category, the Oyster Society’s Saturday’s list offered Momma Mia, a Prince Edward Island oyster with a medium brine taste and a slight fruity finish. Another East Coast oyster is Raspberry Point Oyster, also from Prince Edward Island with a salty-briny taste and slight musky finish.
The Pacific oysters are native to the Pacific coast of Asia and have a mild taste. They are less briny with a creamy or buttery texture and a fruity finish. Shells are shallow and usually rough and jagged.
Under the West Coast category, the Oyster Society featured Chef’s Creek, a British Columbia oyster. The oyster was creamy melon and balanced with the taste of brine. The shells were fluted with purple hues.
Another West Coast favorite was Sun Hollow – an oyster from the South Puget Sound. It offered buttery sweet plump meat and from the first bite, it delivered a kick of medium brininess balanced with a sweet finish.
Before devouring the entire serving, we feasted our eyes on the shells, its shapes, and colors. There is no right or wrong way to eat an oyster but everyone at the table ditched the tiny forks for a hands-on experience. And just like sipping wine, we “slurped” the sweet aroma and taste of the ocean.
Not forgetting the wine, we ordered a bottle of dry Miner Paso Robles Viognier – the right pairing can enhance the oyster’s flavor.
Not to be overshadowed by the popularity of raw oysters, there are many ways to eat an oyster: you can grill, fry, broil, roast but for this article, we featured the experience of eating fresh, raw oysters on the half shell perfectly shucked and served at The Oyster Society of Marco Island.
To complete the seafood experience, we also settled on a mouthwatering Sushi roll, the Funky Buddha, with crab, avocado, and cucumber inside and tuna, salmon, and Hamachi on the outside with a spicy red pepper and curry vinaigrette to share.
From the main entrée, the selection included the Snapper, Potato Encrusted Grouper, Seared Diver Scallops and Twin Main Lobster tails.
A visit to the Oyster Society Restaurant on Marco Island was an incredible dining experience, with great food and terrific service. The Oyster Society is top of the line from top to bottom. The Staff wore masks and were incredibly knowledgeable with the menu.
The Oyster Society is located at: 599 S. Collier Boulevard and reservation is recommended by calling 239-394-3474.