Updated: Nov 2, 2022
Today we will look at the humble oyster! The world's favourite aphrodisiac.
Taste and Appearance
Farming Techniques & Sustainability
We have been selling Carlingford oysters for decades and our family history in the shellfish trade goes back hundreds of years. Based in Manchester's New Smithfield Market we are experts in shellfish and cannot wait to share our enthusiasm with you.
Let's dive in!
What makes an oyster one of the most passionately and sought after products in the world. Well we have to thank the Romans. You may ask what did the Romans ever do for us? If only one thing they have given us a passion to culture oysters as they were the real pioneers in this area. We carry on this tradition but as each oyster can filter over 55 litres of water a day it is entirely up to nature to determine the flavour in each oyster. It takes us over three years to grow a Carlingford Oyster to market size so that’s a lot of filtering. In Carlingford Lough we have a huge exchange of water with each tide which provides the nutrients on which the oysters feed. In conjunction with this freshwater flowing in from the mountain sides north and south of the Lough give our Carlingford Oysters a very rich and distinctive flavour.
Giacomo Casanova, the 18th-century Venetian, reportedly ate dozens of oysters at a time to stir arousal before his legendary trysts. And some ancient cultures thought oysters resembled female genitalia, leading them to believe they imparted sexual prowess.
Taste and Appearance
Carlingford oysters are a perfect tear-drop shapes with a very strong rocky shell and a smooth pearly white enamel. Like other shellfish oysters should not be overly fishy. Rather they have a subtle seafood taste, a taste of the ocean with mineral notes. Since the oyster takes on the salinity of its environment salt also makes up part of the oyster's flavour profile. The location of farming and quality of water can make a huge difference to the oysters flavour and appearance. Carlingford Loch is oyster heaven and produces some of the most sought after oysters in the world.
Next time you try one of our Carlingford Oysters look out for the sweet slightly nutty flavour followed by a slight tannic and lingering aftertaste.
Raw Oysters contain just 85 Kcals per 100g and are just 3% fat. They are 9.5% protein and 5% carbohydrate. They contain about 105mg of sodium and in a 100g portion. Oysters may well be aphrodisiacs, scientific studies conclude they have a unique amino acid called D-Aspartic that is known to stimulate healthy levels of testosterone and sexual desire in both men and women. Oysters are also rich in zinc which is proven to be essential to male sexual function and fertility. More importantly, oysters are an integral part of a romantic dining experience. We have five senses. Taste is its own sense but it's greatly influenced by the other senses. Your food will taste better in a romantic setting, perhaps some music, candle light, maybe a nice view. Couple these things with oysters, you'll be stacking the odds in your favour.
Farming Techniques And Sustainability
Food safety is paramount, we always get this part of the business right. All our customers are repeat customers and our reputation for quality and food safety is key to everything we do. This is what we do to ensure all our Carlingford Oysters are always safe to eat.
The waters of Carlingford Lough are classified by the European Union as Class A. This is the highest grade you can get. It means the oyster can be eaten directly from the Lough without any further processing. Carlingford Oyster Company go a step further we place their oysters in purification tanks which ensures the removal of any traces of unwanted bacteria. In fact they recently doubled the size of their purification facility so they can extend the purification cycle. This allows us confidence that our oysters can be tested prior to dispatch. This is particularly important in controlling the rare but nasty norovirus.
Carlingford Oysters have an extensive an regular sampling regime put in place by the Sea Fisheries Protection Agency (SFPA) and the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) testing for e-coli, norovirus, bio toxin and salmonella All shipments have a batch code so that we can trace all our oysters. Our packing facility is fully approved and inspected on a regular basis.
With all these safeguards in place we want you to enjoy this natural treasure all you have to worry about is what wine best suits you plate of Carlingford Oysters.
The process of opening an oyster is know as shucking. Great care must be taken whist liberating the oysters delicate meat.
Start by wrapping a tea towel round one hand and use it to hold the oyster securely with the hinge (pointed end) exposed and the top (flat side) of the oyster upwards. This ensures you retain that lovely juice.
Next place the tip of an oyster shucking knife firmly into the hinge of the oyster.
Either lever the hinge open or use a twisting motion to pop the oyster open.
Use the knife to free the oyster both from the top half of the shell and from the cup shaped base.
Carefully remove any small pieces of shell.
Dress the oyster as you wish.
Make your romantic advances.
Recipes We Love!
We would love to hear what you thoughts are on these dishes!
Which one was your favourite?
Do you have a recipe we should try?
How did your date night go?!
Thanks for reading!