Oyster lovers will gather to slurp, swoon, and celebrate the succulent bivalve at the Galway International Oyster Festival (Sept. 25-28). Now in its 60th year, the weekend event is deemed one of Europe’s longest-running food extravaganzas. Opening night kicks off with music, seafood, Ireland’s national shucking championship, and presentation of the season’s first oyster to Galway’s mayor by the newly crowned Oyster Pearl — a tradition since 1954. On Saturday, a parade weaves through the narrow medieval streets to the Spanish Arch and there’s a nonstop afternoon of food and entertainment. Representing the United States, Wellfleet’s William “Chopper” Young will vie to regain the title of world’s fastest oyster shucker— currently held by Denmark’s Jesper Knudsen — at the World Oyster Opening Championship. Events include late-night revels at Masquerade Mardi Gras, cooking demos, seafood trails, and Sunday’s family-friendly festival. Tickets $20-$130. 011-353-91-394637, galwayoysterfestival.com GO CHOPPER! MAY THE BEST SHUCKER WIN!!
The first annual Battery Wharf Oyster Fest makes its debut on the Boston Harborwalk at Fairmont Battery Wharf (Sept. 21, 2-5 p.m.). Some of Boston’s best restaurants and chefs will combine forces with oyster growers for the afternoon event that includes live entertainment and small bites from Aragosta Bar & Bistro, Merrill & Co., Neptune Oyster, Puritan & Co., Row 34, and Tavern Road. Want some freshly shucked oysters? Growers from the Massachusetts Aquaculture Association will be showcasing their best bivalves: Moon Shoal, Chatham Shellfish Co., Indian Cove Aquaculture, Cotuit Oyster Co., Wianno Oysters, First Encounters, and Island Creek Oysters. Admission includes all food and two drink tickets. Proceeds benefit the Island Creek Oysters Foundation and Massachusetts Aquaculture Association. $65. Get tickets here!
So excited to be going to this...and the weather report is sunny and 80's. Yippee!
Shaw's Oyster Fest Block Party returns to downtown Chicago on Friday, Sept. 26 from 3 p.m. - 10 p.m. Hosted by Chicago's premiere oyster bar, Shaw's Crab House, Oyster Fest brings together live music, Goose Island beers, fresh seafood including a variety of East and West Coast Oysters, Shaw's signature crab bites, sushi rolls, fried oysters, lobster rolls, BBQ bites from Bub City, and more. More than 3,000 guests are expected to come down to Oyster Fest and slurp up nearly 15,000 oysters from the East and West Coast, signature bites from Shaw's Crab House, Goose Island beer, and live music from singer/songwriter Brett Dennen. A high-energy Oyster Slurp Off will take place at Oyster Fest as last year's finalists go head-to-head with this year's contestants to see who will prevail as the slurping champion and take home the $1,000 prize.
This year, Oyster Fest kicks-off the 30th anniversary festivities of Shaw's Crab House which will celebrate its 30th anniversary of the Oyster Bar in December 2014 and the dining room in April 2015. TICKETS: Tickets are available for pre-sale on September 3 for $20 using the code LOBSTER. Beginning Friday, September 5, general admission tickets will be available for $25. For more information, to view the full line-up and menu, or to purchase tickets, visit www.oysterfestchicago.com.
I grew up spending part of every summer in Wellfleet, Massachusetts, which included eating many oysters. After stumbling into an oyster shucking competition in Miami Beach in 2006, I’ve become a fan of the sport and have written about local, national, and international competitions for the Boston Globe, Los Angeles Times, American Way Magazine, and the Huffington Post. I've also written oyster-centric stories for Rustik and Modern Farmer. I’ve never met an oyster I didn’t want to eat.