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Best place to buy oysters and advice on transport

Bernhardt Sep 21, 2010 07:16 AM

My wine club is having our 10th year anniversary and we are planning a weekend of wine and food on an island in georgian bay.

I want to take up a couple of dozen oysters, planning right now on buying them at Diana's. Any other suggestions in Bayview/Eg or east end?

For oyster experts, how should I transport them (we are flying up in a small plane, so I can't take too much ice, and will need to but them the day before)?

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  1. c
    chip RE: Bernhardt Sep 21, 2010 08:35 AM

    I'd only consider buying them from Rodneys or Oyster Boy (872 Queen West, 534-3432). Adam at Oyster Boy can probably provide you with a small foam container; fill it with ice packs and seal it with duct tape and you should be fine for a day... do not seal it up with ice that'll eventually melt and wreck both the oyster and the plane.

    Oyster Boy
    872 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J1G3, CA

    1. j
      JennaBean RE: Bernhardt Sep 21, 2010 08:44 AM

      Diana's is great and they supply may of the places downtown. My bf ordered two hundred oysters from them back in June and only about 20 were off. If you tell them about your transportation issue in advance they should be able to package them up with ice packs with no problems.

      2 Replies
      1. re: JennaBean
        Full tummy RE: JennaBean Sep 21, 2010 11:01 AM

        I also highly recommend Diana Seafood. Great selection and good value.

        Diana's Seafood
        2101 Lawrence Ave E, Toronto, ON M1R, CA

        1. re: JennaBean
          Derksen RE: JennaBean Sep 21, 2010 01:34 PM

          I ordered 12 dozen from Diana's a while back, and only had two or three that were off max. I didn't buy the boxed mapeques though. I've heard mixed reviews on those.

          I've ordered bulk from both Rodney's and Oyster Boy as well. They are pretty comparable in price and selection.

          I would choose Diana's out of the three for pricing, selection, and service. Call ahead to let them know your intentions, and they can make sure that the product you require will be there. Chances are they'll be stocked regardless, but better safe than sorry.

          Happy shucking!

          Oyster Boy
          872 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J1G3, CA

        2. Splendid Wine Snob RE: Bernhardt Sep 21, 2010 01:50 PM

          Another vote for Diana's.

          I got 6 dozen last January and they were deliciously fresh. Kumamotos and Beausoleils. Good service and the prices are competitive too.

          1. f
            funidea RE: Bernhardt Dec 4, 2010 06:28 AM

            For Price & quality, Diana's is the best. I tried the St Lawrence market and they sell the oysters by THE POUND...What a rip off ! I asked the guy to weight 12 small malpeque and it came to $16 for 12 oysters. I didn't buy it. First time in my life where i see people selling oysters by the pound.

            1. c
              CocoTO RE: Bernhardt Dec 4, 2010 07:46 AM

              Rodney's, Oyster Boy or Diana's are safe bets ...

              As for transport, here are some thoughts:
              Store oysters at 2 - 4°C, covered with a clean damp cloth. Do not seal live oysters in an airtight container -- they will not be able to breathe and will die. Eat within 2 days. Never freeze unshelled oysters.

              Oyster Boy
              872 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J1G3, CA

              1 Reply
              1. re: CocoTO
                Charles Yu RE: CocoTO Dec 4, 2010 02:44 PM

                For price and selection, Diana's hands down!!
                At around $10 per half dozen for exotic varietals, they were much more reasonable than Rodney's or Oyster boy, IMO.
                When I was there last weekend, they must have AT LEAST 15 different choices including east coast Canadian and American, west coast Canadian and American, Irish and French.
                They also provide complimentary ice bags for transportation. At home put them in a fridge with a wet damp towel covering them! Will keep for a few days!

              2. sugarcube RE: Bernhardt Dec 4, 2010 02:51 PM

                Another vote for Diana's. Staff are friendly and helpful. We purchased 2 dozen Kumamoto oysters which they gave to us on ice. We then put them in our mini cooler in our car to transport them home for shucking (they also sell shucking tools there too)


                1. Charles Yu RE: Bernhardt Dec 4, 2010 07:07 PM

                  A sample of 'east coast oysters' bought at Diana's last weekend
                  From left to right:
                  - Blue Point
                  - Beach Angels
                  - Whale Rock
                  - Noank Connecticutt

                  1. i
                    itsvince RE: Bernhardt Dec 5, 2010 02:18 PM

                    +1 for Diana's. We got a box of 48 choice Malpeques yesterday for $29.99. Very fresh and delicious.

                    1. DealsCartel_Nathan RE: Bernhardt Dec 5, 2010 02:51 PM

                      Sounds like an incredible trip! Like others have mentioned, Diana's Seafood is a great choice. I went to a friend's party a little while back and she served us oysters from there. That was the first time I had raw oysters outside of a restaurant and they tasted amazing! Give the folks at Diana's Seafood a call and let them know about your transport plans.

                      1. w
                        warlock RE: Bernhardt Aug 3, 2011 06:46 AM

                        Might sound like a stupid question.....Do the stores shuck it for you or is it like an extra charge?.....I have an Oyster Shucker but i have found it to be a real tedious job....

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: warlock
                          grandgourmand RE: warlock Aug 3, 2011 07:27 AM

                          I imagine the could, but I don't know. However, shucking in advance and then transporting, you'd spill out the liquor, I imagine.

                          1. re: grandgourmand
                            warlock RE: grandgourmand Aug 3, 2011 07:50 AM

                            Good point....I did contact Diana's and here is what they said "We don't offer that service yet,but when the restaurant opens,we will provide the service for you"...

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