OysterFest 2012 started on Friday morning, with Lisa Gowe at the Neavitt Landing, where she was collecting oyster donations from local watermen for the annual event at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum. The event benefits both the museum and the Talbot County Watermen’s Association. That’s the same group that puts on Watermen’s Appreciation Day – my number one favorite local event. OysterFest is number two.
This is Bob Hambleton, who has been working on the water since 1967. On this, the second day of oyster dredging season, he said it looks like it’s going to be a good year for oysters in Talbot County.
Lisa said that there were plenty of big ones, little ones and plenty of spat out there in Broad Creek. Good news for us. We watched a couple of boats come in – they got their limit in just under two hours on Friday.
Later that afternoon, the oysters were washed at Bay Hundred Seafood.
The absolute best part about OysterFest at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum is the annual oyster stew competition. Local chefs compete, and the crowd gets to vote. (I picked the winner!) Here’s Sal Simoncini, dishing up Oyster Stew “A” – the best one, made by Sherwood’s Landing Restaurant.
The oysters were shucked all day long, and in the big boat shop, Mike Gorman was roasting them on the grill, just long enough to half cook them, and dip them in butter. Oh yea.
As usual, there were lots of dogs at the festival. I spent a short moment looking at the world from the perspective of a small dog. It’s different down there….
Jen Kuhn spent some time showing Rachel how to make a hoop, and Eric Applegarth showed her how to tong for oysters. There was a lot of education at the festival which is about celebrating the history of the local seafood industry and the oyster itself as much as it’s about eating them. It was so great to spend the day with my sister, Laurie, Rachel and Ed, who visited from St. Mary’s County.
And as usual, wherever I looked at the festival – there was Tracey Munson.
Another successful event, Talbot Watermen and CBMM – great job!