National Oyster Day returns this weekend, which means it’s time to shuck and slurp down some of the best mollusks Boston has to offer.
Headlining the Aug. 5 foodie holiday is the Oyster Oyster Block Party at SoWa Open Market, co-hosted by eatBoston, which promises to be a pearl of an event with food trucks and restaurants dishing up their best oyster creations.
“The Oyster Oyster Block Party is one event in our seven-part block party series throughout the open season,” says SoWa event director Aida Villarreal-Licona. “It’s a way for us to engage with food trucks in Boston and feature unique dishes and cooking.”
Shuck Food Truck, bringing the fruits of the sea frp, all over Massachusetts, will be one of the vendors at the festivities, which take place Aug. 5 and 6. The finalized offerings will be featured on the event’s Facebook page, but one can probably expect to see their “oyster po’boy” on brioche with kale and homemade tartar sauce as well as fried oysters in the “crispy oyster taco.”
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Villarreal-Licona also says that other food trucks not usually associated with seafood “really have to think outside the box to feature oysters,” pointing to Roxy’s Grilled Cheese as an example as they “always embrace the block party’s theme into their grilled cheese roots.”
Aaron Cohen, co-founder of eatBoston, notes that a wide sampling of beer, wine and ciders will also be available at the block party, as he says, “We've got wine in a can from Porch Pounder and Lila as well as wine cocktails from Pampelonne and Mighty Swell.” Expect cider from Stowe Cider on Saturday and Champlain Orchards on Sunday.
SoWa Open Market, packed full of local artisans, musicians and farmers on top of many brick and mortar galleries, will host two more block parties later this year, including a cheese-themed gathering in September and a sausage festival in October.
In addition to this weekend's festivities, here are four other spots to celebrate National Oyster Day in Boston.
State Street Provisions
With stunning views and an equally impressive raw bar selection, State Street Provisions will definitely meet all of your oyster needs. Raw ones served on the half-shell, garnished with cucumber and pepper, will be served for a buck each on August 5 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Got to try: Fried oysters with a ginger aioli, radishes and bonito fish.
255 State St., Boston, statestreetprovisions.com
Names like “ichabod flat” and “savage harbour blonde” on the Row 34 menu might make you question if you accidentally stumbled into a too-hip microbrewery instead of a seafood restaurant. But rest assured, these selections are just two from the dozen or so types of oysters you can try out at this downtown hotspot. Prices range from $2 to $3 per oyster.
Got to try: Bacon cheddar burger topped with fried oysters, Japanese chili pepper aioli and slaw.
383 Congress St., Boston, row34.com
Island Creek Oyster Bar
Enjoy Massachusetts-raised oysters at Island Creek Oyster Bar, sourcing their product from the namesake Island Creek Oyster Farm in Duxbury. Also taste the “spearpoint” from Martha’s Vineyard or go international with the “fin de la baie” of New Brunswick, Canada.
Got to try: Crispy oyster sliders on mini brioche buns, complete with a lime chili aioli.
500 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, islandcreekoysterbar.com
Select Oyster Bar
Chosen just for you, Select Oyster Bar has a great three-course lunch special starting August 1 which offers half a dozen “island creek” oysters to ease you into the meal. Less oceanic dishes, like an heirloom tomato salad and ratatouille, are also part of the lineup.
Got to try: The Gloucester plate, a florid arrangement of oysters, shrimp, lobster and other seafood for when you’re feeling a little extravagant.
50 Gloucester St., Boston, selectboston.com