Originally Posted by LawrenceMD
my best experience with raw oysters was in thailand. they have this place with floating huts on a inlet and there are guys in canoes who literally row up to you with dripping wet baskets of fresh oysters. they also had this hot sauce for them w/ thai chilies.
but I've also had them in expensive restaurants and they suck I end up wanting to kick myself.
I had some solid Apalachicola Bay oysters a couple of weeks ago, which was a nice treat, but the best oysters I've had in years were in Birmingham, AL, of all places. I went out there with my dad, a friend, and the friend's dad last year for a Jimmy Buffett concert, and they had a big gathering at a local hotel with booze, food, and whatnot. There was a guy there shucking oysters, and I didn't think anything of it, given we were in northern Alabama. My dad stopped to watch the guy and swore they were great quality. I didn't buy it, but he insisted we try them. Sure enough, the old man was right. They were fantastic. I'm pretty sure we were half of that oyster shucker's business for the day. We stood there for a good while eating them as fast as he could shuck 'em.
The Thailand thing sounds incredible. My dad has similar stories about visiting my maternal great-grandfather in Maryland, going out to the marshes, coming back with bushels of fresh oysters, and sitting in the garage killing them with cheap beer. I'm pretty sure I was born by the time this was happening, but I wasn't old enough to remember it.
+1,000 to the expensive restaurants thing. Half the time the wash the damned oysters, and, even when they don't, the quality is never particularly good. I don't understand why it happens that way, but I've yet to find an exception to the rule.