Choose from Three Options
- $12 for $20 worth of seafood for two
- $20 for $40 worth of seafood for four
- $12 for $20 worth of seafood for takeout only
- See the menu
Four Things to Know About Oysters
Oysters are popular mollusks on the menu here. Read on for some facts to share between slurping them down.
1. Oysters may not have much visual appeal, but humans discovered their rich taste early on. In the shallow waters off the shores of Manhattan, archaeologists have found mounds of discarded oyster shells dating back to 6950 BCE. Oyster farming dates back to at least the first century BCE, when Roman engineer Sergius Orata cultivated oysters in southern Italian lakes and sold the bounty in local markets.
2. Left alone, oysters grow throughout their lives. Recently, a fisherman found an oyster fossil that carbon-dating showed to be 145 million years old. It was the size of his head and, when scanned with an MRI machine, revealed a golf-ball-sized pearl. Today’s oysters grow about an inch per year, are ready for cultivation within 3–4 years, and live an average of 6 years, with reports of some living as long as 20 years and reaching lengths of more than eight inches.
3. Oyster reefs were once a battlefield. Following the American Civil War, Chesapeake Bay supplied up to half of the world’s oysters. However, state laws in Virginia, Maryland, and New England granted different permits to residents that allowed varying degrees of dredging and harvesting. Fishermen would encroach into other states’ waters, leading to violent and even deadly clashes. Soon, a Maryland Oyster Navy was raised to police the waters and enforce sandcastle building codes.
4. If the world is your oyster, you might want to strike out for other planets. Unless pearl farmers kickstart pearl growth by inserting a bead or piece of a jewelry-store ad, only one in every 10,000 oysters contains a pearl. Gem-quality pearls are not found in food oysters, but rather in a separate family known as the feathered oysters; freshwater pearls actually come from mussels. The color of the pearl depends on what the mollusk eats. White, black, gray, red, blue, and green pearls can be found all around the world, but black pearls come only from the pigment-producing black-lipped oyster, native only to the South Pacific.