Shuck & Jive – The Oyster Slay

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Half Shell Heaven

Half Shell Heaven

 

I don’t know how it happened.   I didn’t know how my parents would react. What would my grandmother say? What would Scarlett O’Hara do? I went off to college and fell in love with a Yankee. Yep, an SEC despising, unsweet tea drinking, don’t-you-dare-put-ketchup-on-that-hot-dog man from the North.

Despite both of our general stubborn nature, we decided to make an effort to appreciate the customs, traditions, and cuisine that we each hold so dear. Stereotypes debunked, we were ready to teach each other all there was to know about our respective sides of the Mason Dixon. I wooed him with the beach. He bought me a Cubs jersey. He went to a Mardi Gras Ball. I ate deep dish pizza. Eventually, I began to understand the draw of living in a place where there are actually seasons, and he even mumbled a “Roll Tide” or two. But after a year or so of dating, I asked him to try an oyster…and that’s where he drew the line.

I guess the idea of snacking on a slimy little mollusk was too much for him to handle. After a few years of guilt-tripping pleading, I was finally able to get him to try one of my favorite coastal delicacies. His reaction? Absolute adoration would be an understatement. Seriously, is there such a thing as Oyster Eaters Anonymous, because he may need it at this point? Throughout our travels, when we’re looking to grab lunch, dinner, or even a midmorning snack, my now-husband requests—no, insists upon—oysters. Fried, stewed, or nude, he’s got to have them. Maybe it’s a result of my coastal upbringing, but I don’t mind one bit!

Between his borderline addiction and my search to find the best-of-the-best for our readers on Coast360, I’ve tasted just about every oyster on the Alabama Gulf Coast, and I’m more than willing to share my favorites!

Oysters Rockefeller - Napkin Please!

Oysters Rockefeller – Napkin Please!

I’ll Have a Dozen Raw, Please…

We’re so lucky on the Alabama Gulf Coast to have a fresh, local supply of seafood. Purists know there’s nothing quite like a raw oyster. From the Gulf to your plate, it doesn’t get much fresher than that. At many restaurants on the Gulf Coast, you can watch your oysters shucked at the bar and promptly delivered to your table. Whether you top it with hot sauce, cocktail sauce, horseradish, put it on a cracker, or squirt it with lemon, you simply can’t go wrong enjoying a plate of fresh, raw oysters straight out of the Gulf of Mexico.

Here’s a list of a few of our favorite joints who serve up these succulent bivalves in the nude:

 

Acme Oyster House

Doc’s Seafood Shack

Wintzell’s

Cobalt the Restaurant

The Original Oyster House

Florabama Yacht Club

Sea N Suds

The Steamer & Baked Oyster Bar

Flipper’s Seafood & Oyster Bar

Fisher’s at Orange Beach Marina

Papa Rocco’s

The Hangout

 

Everything’s Better with Butter

Of course, raw oysters aren’t everyone’s thing. And although I think you’re missing out, I’m ok with it because that just means more for me! But seriously, I don’t judge you for it (and ain’t that sweet?) because truthfully, cooked oysters don’t hurt my feelings one iota. There are more delicious oyster dishes than you can shake a pearl at, but here’s a list of the best ones here on the Coast:

  • Oysters Earle at Fisher’s Upstairs – Orange Beach

    Oysters Earle at Fishers

    Oysters Earle at Fishers

Bon Secour Oysters, Garlic Leek Butter

 

  • Chargrilled Oysters at the The Flora-Bama Yacht Club – Perdido Key
    "Chargrilled

    Chargrilled Oysters at FloraBama Yacht Club

    Topped with Romano, Parmesan, & Garlic Butter

    • Oysters Bienville at Wintzell’s – Orange Beach

      Oysters Bienville and more at Wintzell's

      Oysters Bienville and more at Wintzell’s

    Oysters covered with Shrimp, Crabmeat and Parmesan Sauce

     

    • Oyster Rockefeller Soup at Acme Oyster House – Gulf Shores

      Oyster Rockefeller Soup at Acme Oyster Bar

      Oyster Rockefeller Soup at Acme Oyster Bar

    Oysters, Spinach, Parmesan Cheese, and a hint of Herbsaint

     

    • Wood Fired Sampler at Villagio Grill – Orange Beach

      Wood Fired Sampler at Villagio Grille Orange Beach

      Wood Fired Sampler at Villagio Grille Orange Beach

    Oysters served with Garlic & Butter, Proscuitto Rockefeller, Gorgonzola & Shallot, and Fontina & Jalapeno

     

    • Surfin’ Oysters at Shipp’s Harbour Grill – Orange Beach

      Surfin' Oysters at Shipp's Harbor Grill

      Surfin’ Oysters at Shipp’s Harbor Grill

    Fried Oysters, Roasted Poblano, Brie Cheese, & Pepper Glaze


    Still want to know more about dining on the Alabama Gulf Coast? You can’t go wrong perusing the menus of the restaurants that made our list of the Top 12 Restaurants on the Alabama Gulf Coast