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Fresh oysters in DC?

joeljkp Jan 26, 2010 04:05 AM

So John Shields tells me (in his book) that now is oyster season on the Chesapeake. Do any of these fresh oysters make it over to markets in DC? What's the best place to get some?

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    comestibles RE: joeljkp Jan 26, 2010 04:25 AM

    The Wharf in DC.

    3 Replies
    1. re: comestibles
      helenahimm RE: comestibles Jan 26, 2010 09:56 AM

      I've heard amazing things about that place, I will make sure to try it soon.

      1. re: comestibles
        Pappy RE: comestibles Jan 28, 2010 11:38 AM

        Do yo mean Maine Avenue? I don't think anything there has been local for decades. In fact, I suspect that much of the seafood there isn't even seafood. And I am pretty certain that what is seafood isn't the seafood they claim it is. And if it is the seafood they claim it is, it's older than you are. Ad to that no parking and rotten service and you've got a piece of riverfront property that is ripe for development. Good riddance.

        1. re: comestibles
          Soup RE: comestibles Jan 31, 2010 01:24 PM

          The Wharf (on Maine Ave) much like Ben's chili bowl survives more on past reputations perpetuated by foodies then how good it actually is.

          I'd recommend you look somewhere else. If you are looking for really fresh oysters try the following website. I recently had oysters from this place and they are really good. http://www.rroysters.com/oysters.htm

        2. d
          dc_foodie_girl RE: joeljkp Jan 28, 2010 09:48 AM

          Definitely visit the DC marina - very fresh seafood!

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            caphil07 RE: joeljkp Jan 28, 2010 11:55 AM

            Blacksalt Market on McArthur will definitely have some. Call ahead, they are very helpful. Best fishmonger in the city. Hands down.

            1 Reply
            1. re: caphil07
              Arabella09 RE: caphil07 Jan 28, 2010 06:36 PM

              The Wharf is terrible--caters to tourists with little taste. BlackSalt is consistently excellent. Hank's Oyster Bar might be worth a look.

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              sharonc RE: joeljkp Jan 29, 2010 02:32 AM

              Try the fresh oysters from the vendors that sell at the Dupont Farmers market on Sundays. The same people sell at the Court house farmers market on Saturdays. I think that thieir name is Busters seafood. I think the source is actually the James River, not the bay., but never the less, I doubt if you will find any sweeter or fresher Oysters in DC.

              4 Replies
              1. re: sharonc
                flavrmeistr RE: sharonc Jan 29, 2010 05:09 AM

                I've always found the oysters at Old Ebbit to be salty-sweet and fresh. Also J.Paul's in Georgetown, but it's been a few years. The best I've had lately were in Ocean City and Chicoteague. Also at Liberty Road Seafood in Libertytown, MD.

                1. re: flavrmeistr
                  Smokeater55 RE: flavrmeistr Jan 29, 2010 04:22 PM

                  If you don't mind a short drive north, check out J&T Seafood in Woodbine, Md. I and frends have gotten oysters from them a few times and they are lower cost then the markets in Jessup and very sweet. Call them at 410-489-9800.


                  1. re: flavrmeistr
                    notthatfoodisimportant RE: flavrmeistr Jan 30, 2010 01:03 PM

                    Agree with Flavrmeistr on Old Ebbit! Not sure whether they still have half-price oyster happy hour, but it was a great thing when I was doing shift work circa 2003-2004. Fresh raw bar items discounted between midnight and 1 a.m. Good times.

                    1. re: notthatfoodisimportant
                      4X4 RE: notthatfoodisimportant Feb 1, 2010 05:55 AM

                      As far as I know, they do. So does Clyde's in Chinatown.

                2. notthatfoodisimportant RE: joeljkp Jan 30, 2010 12:56 PM

                  Get thee to Hank's! Tom Sietsema reviewed Hank's (just east of 17th and Q Streets, NW) in the Washington Post's best new listings a couple years back and it has been one of our favorites ever since. It's a fantastic place that we feel privileged to call a neighborhood restaurant. It's also a great location if you are headed to or from The Studio Theater. The oysters alone are worth it -- even though they are not all local. The daily oyster MENU will include some Chesapeake Bay oysters as well as very fresh varieties from New England and the Pacific Northwest. I like having the wait staff describe all the oysters with as much care as they would recommend a fine wine. Creamy finishes, cucumber finishes, more or less brine, mineral finishes -- Hank's offers them all and will serve you as many or as few as you like of each. Sunday brunch includes a delectable fried oyster frittata with parmesan shavings and garlicky pesto. Yum! Their Bloody Mary's aren't bad, and Hank's always has 4-5 micro-brews on tap. I haven't tried Jamie's second location in Old Town Alexandria, but have no reason to think the oysters there wouldn't be first rate, too.

                  Hank's Oyster Bar - Dupont Circle
                  1624 Q St NW Ste Lowr, Washington, DC 20009

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                    Flaxen_Vixen RE: joeljkp Feb 2, 2010 11:42 AM

                    Wholefoods across the area have had oysters this season. The oysters from the Maine Ave fish market are cheap, but dirty - their shells are caked with mud and honestly I don't like the flavor very much. I'm more of a PEI / Connecticut oyster lover than a Chesapeake oyster eater. Cannon's Market in Georgetown also has quite the selection and is my favorite out of the bunch: http://www.cannonsfishmarket.com/inde...

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: Flaxen_Vixen
                      PollyG RE: Flaxen_Vixen Feb 2, 2010 05:08 PM

                      Like you, I'm not a big fan of Chesapeake oysters, which I find to be large and bland, lacking in character. However, Whole Foods in Reston was offering samples of their just-shucked Chincoteague oysters just before T-giving, and they were lovely, briny things with a good flavor.

                      1. re: PollyG
                        hill food RE: PollyG Feb 2, 2010 07:16 PM

                        I also like Chincoteagues, last time I was in Balto at the Lexington Market they were Gulf (and that was around this time of year) quite good, just not local

                        1. re: hill food
                          flavrmeistr RE: hill food Feb 3, 2010 07:40 AM

                          The local oysters I had in Chincoteague and OC a month ago were perfect. I had about 5 dozen over two days time. I just couldn't pass up on the opportunity. Oysters always taste best the nearer to the source they are eaten, in my experience. Less of a chance for them to be mishandled.

                          1. re: hill food
                            4X4 RE: hill food Feb 3, 2010 10:51 AM

                            I've had excellent Chincoteagues and Blue Point at Annapolis Seafood Market (various locations in Annapolis.) The market's a great place to dine in or for carry out.

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