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Jul 20, 2010 04:27 AM

Tomales Bay, Marshall General Store, Hog Island - Oysters in July?

We were thinking of heading out to the Marshall General Store or Hog Island along Tomales Bay in a couple weeks, but we were wondering if oysters would be available in July. What can I expect during this time of year?

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    1. We were just out at Hog Island tthree or four days ago - weren't expecting much but our out of town friend wanted to try them anyways ....... we got 50 kuomomotos (sp) and were pleasantly surprised - pretty nice texture ( not soft ) and a nice sweet flavor overall. We went midweek and it was not crowded - avoid the weekends if you can - it can be a zoo.

      1. According to an article I read by the owners sometime ago it is actually more or an issue in the winter when the runoff from storm drains can have an adverse affect on the water in the Bay.

        4 Replies
        1. re: dhoffman1421

          I believe that you're referring to the water quality and the safety of eating oysters harvested after heavy rains - which cause harmful runoff into Tomales Bay from the cows that graze the hills above TB. I was talking about the seasonal variations in oyster quality - from an eating perspective. Winter oysters are generally preferred for a firmer texture and better flavor.

          1. re: gordon wing

            Frankly. I don't believe it is the water temp. but the spawning season that matters. Oyster breeders know that the summer taste is very subtle to most eaters, and say that cold water overcomes spawning problems. If a milky bitter taste doesn't bother you, no problems. If you prefer your oysters BBQ or fried, you will probably not have a problem. Poluted runoff from dairy farms above Tomales Bay is a different matter, R in the month doesn't prevent cow dung from flavoring your oysters.

            1. re: OldTimer

              "R in the month doesn't prevent cow dung from flavoring your oysters." That might be the least compelling sales pitch I've ever heard!

              Nonetheless, we're going to head out to Tomales Bay to get some barbequed oysters at Marshall General Store. Then we'll swing into Point Reyes for a visit to Cowgirl. Are there other foodie stops in that area that I should be planning on? I've got all day to drive from that area back to SFO.

              1. re: glutton

                The Marin French Cheese Company is not far from Point Reyes Station, and has been in operation since 1865. Apparently they are the oldest cheese manufacturer in the U.S. They make Brie, Camembert, a light breakfast cheese and a wonderful stinky cheese called Schloss. Check out their site at

                Marin French Cheese
                7500 Red Hill Rd, Petaluma, CA 94952

        2. We were at the Marshall General Store a week and a half ago and both the barbecued and the raw oysters were delicious. With a beer on a sunny day, it doesn't get any better! While in Point Reyes Station you should go to the Bovine Bakery where they have these amazing things called (I think) dunbars, that are made of chocolate and nuts and oatmeal and are so good that they may change your whole outlook on life.

          Bovine Bakery
          11315 Shoreline Hwy, Point Reyes Station, CA