The reason that oysters have been sought after shellfish since Roman times is that they have complex layers of flavours akin to those of fine wines that connoisseurs have learned to appreciate. As they grow, oysters take on the nature of the waters and geology where they have been grown. These nuances in flavour and texture has come to be known as their “merroir” and changes with the seasons reflecting changes in the marine environment.
As French poet Leon-Paul Fargue said “Eating an oyster is like kissing the sea on the lips”
We have produced a tasting wheel to help you appreciate our oysters. By working from the centre of the wheel outwards in a clockwise direction we hope it will help you to identify the different nuance in flavour and texture and to describe the Atlantic Edge merroir yourself.
- Visual characteristics: Look at the oyster, the shape, the colour of the shell and the flesh
- The perfume: a freshly shucked oyster will smell sweet and of the sea
- The liquor: after shucking the oyster will release a liquor, sip this to experience the salinity
- The progression of flavours: chew the oyster a few times before swallowing. Be aware of the progression of flavours from the salty “nose”, through the sweet and powerful flavoured “body” to the lingering mineral “finish”
An oyster’s merroir changes with the seasons so be prepared for a new experience every time you savour our oysters.