Oysters are bivalve mollusks (mammals) that live in saltwater environments. They filter water using their gills and feed on plankton. The oyster farm industry has grown rapidly since its inception in the 1980s. In 2017, global production was valued at $2.4 billion.
Oysters are cultivated in tanks or beds. The shells are harvested after they reach maturity. The meat is then sold fresh or frozen.
The first oyster farms were established in the Chesapeake Bay area of Maryland and Virginia in the 1980s. Since then, oyster farming has expanded to include many states including California,
Oregon, Washington, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Maine, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, Vermont, Ontario, Canada, and Chile.
The United States produces about 90% of the world’s oysters. About 80% of domestic oysters come from the Pacific Northwest.
In the United States, there are three main oyster-growing regions: the Gulf Coast, the Atlantic coast, and the Pacific coast. The Gulf Coast region includes coastal areas of Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida.
The Atlantic coast includes coastal areas of North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Virginia. The Pacific coast includes coastal areas of Northern California, Oregon, Washington and British Columbia.
In addition to being a food source, oysters have many medicinal uses. These include treatment for gastrointestinal ailments such as diarrhea, dysentery, and constipation.
Oysters also contain high levels of zinc, copper, iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, phosphorus, vitamin B12, choline, protein, and amino acids.
So, if you are a lover of Oysters you will certainly want to know where the Best Oyster Farms in your region are. Fortunately, there are many different Oyster farms across America that you can easily get to.
So if you live in Washington and want to know what the Best Oyster Farms are in Washington then read this article to find out.
Best Oyster Farms In Washington
One of the best Oyster producers in the region, Minterbrook do all they can to ensure that the Oysters that you get on your plate are of the highest possible quality. Minterbrook’s Oysters are some of the finest that are produced in the region and well worth sampling.
In the heart of beautiful Seattle, Taylor Shellfish Farms sustainably farm some of the most incredibly tasting oysters and other shellfish that you can get in the Washington region.
Taylor Shellfish is a fast growing shellfish farm and one that’s influence will be sure to soon spread across Washington state in years to come.
Set on the East Coast on the outskirts of Washington State, Bay Center is a fantastic Oyster farm that because of the fact it lies on the coast is perfect for getting the healthiest and tastiest oysters that there are around.
The brilliantly named Willapa Bay Oyster House Interpretive Center is perfect for anyone who is trying oysters for the first time. Gaining their produce from the best oyster farms in the region,
Willapa Bay is perfect for getting involved in the world of seafood and for ensuring that you have the best time eating oysters that you possibly can.
If you live in Washington or are visiting the state, make sure to try the Willapa Bay Oyster House Interpretive Center – you surely won’t be disappointed!
One of the best places to buy freshly caught and freshly farmed oysters is at the Sound Fresh Clams and Oysters stall at the Olympia Farmers Market.
The Olympia Farmers Market is one of the finest in all of Washington state and provides a great collection of fresh shellfish and other types of fish.
Make sure to try the oysters because you certainly will always remember the delectable taste of them and be certain to come back for more.
It is of course also worth checking out all the other delicious produce that is on offer at the fantastic Olympia Farmer Market, which contains some of the best fresh produce you will be likely to find not only in Washington but in the US as a whole.
The Buck Bay Shellfish farm is one of the best in Washington State and rightly so. With its incredibly diverse range of shellfish, it is perfect for anyone who wants to ensure that they can access the highest quality oysters available.
Indeed, there is perhaps no better oyster farm to visit to see how well your oysters are being reared than the Buck Bay Shellfish Farm.
Now that we’ve listed the best oyster farms in Washington, let’s move on to explaining how you can quickly and easily cook oysters for yourself.
The Best Way To Cook Oysters Yourself
Now that we’ve listed some of the best oyster farms in Washington, let’s explain exactly how best to cook oysters in your own home.
Whilst it is always great to be able to eat a meal out and about, it is also always important to be able to cook your favorite meal yourself and if you love oysters then this is exactly the way to cook them.
The Pacific Northwest has some of the best oysters in the United States. They’re known for their sweet flavor and briny taste. In fact, they’ve even won awards at the World Shellfish Competition.
Oysters are a great source of protein and nutrients. They also contain zinc, vitamin B12, iron, potassium, and calcium. If you want to enjoy these delicious bivalves, you should eat them raw or lightly cooked.
Oysters can be eaten on their own, but most people prefer to serve them with cocktail sauce, lemon juice, butter, and/or bacon bits.
You can find fresh oysters year-round, but they’re usually available during summer months. The best time to buy oysters is when they’re still alive. When an oyster is alive, it will close its shell and protect itself by releasing a cloud of mucus that repels predators.
If you don’t like raw oysters, you can steam them first. You can do this by placing the oysters in a steamer basket over simmering water. Cover the pot and cook until the shells open. Remove the oysters from the heat, let cool, then drain and serve.
If you’d rather have your oysters prepared, you can grill them, broil them, bake them, or poach them. To prepare grilled oysters, place them on skewers and brush them with olive oil. Grill them over medium heat until they turn golden brown.
To make baked oysters, cut the oysters into quarters and remove any adhering muscle tissue. Place the oysters on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake them at 350 degrees F for 5 minutes.
To make poached oysters, bring about 3 cups of water to boil in a large skillet. Add 1 tablespoon salt and 2 tablespoons vinegar. Stir well. Drop in the oysters one at a time. Cook them for about 4 minutes, or until they begin to curl up. Drain the oysters and serve immediately.
Oysters are of course considered to be a great aphrodisiac so they are always best to have with a romantic meal.
They are however a great and simple snack – indeed, during the Victorian era when oysters were seen as cheaper due to the vast amounts of them that were available in the wild, oysters were quickly and easily eaten at pubs and at local dockside haunts.
Whilst the scarcity of oysters has certainly changed, their tastiness certainly hasn’t and people’s desire to either eat them as a starter, as part of a romantic meal or as a simple snack certainly hasn’t diminished.
Washington is one of the United States’ most recognizable states and one that is popular for tourists around the world. It has many incredible attractions and its proximity to the Canadian border means that it is perfect for a trip to the wonderful Canadian landscape.
Washington is also one of the premier states for the growing of oysters and the oyster farms listed above are the best in Washington. Visiting them and eating their oysters will not only certainly give you a greater culinary experience than you will have previously experienced, but it will also give you an insight into the rich food culture that exists not just in Washington but throughout the USA.
This is why not only visiting Washington is important but also make sure you visit its food producers, if you don’t already live in the state. Its vibrant and eclectic food scene is perfect for anyone who wishes to experience some of the best traditional American food that is available.
So, if you are unsure whether to try shellfish or visit Washington, make sure to change your mind now and visit the fantastic Oyster farms that are situated in Washington state. You certainly won’t regret your trip and you’ll be certain to have an exceptional culinary experience.