Saturday, May 12, 2012

Taylor Shellfish Farms

“As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans.” 

Taylor Shellfish has been slaking seafood cravings since they opened their Capitol Hill outpost about a year ago, adding to the foodie dream that is the Melrose Market. (The Market boasts a wine store, a cheese shop, a fancy goods store, a flower shop, a sandwich spot, a cool bar, and two outstanding restaurants. The Market also holds a butcher, a baker, and only needs a candlestick-maker to complete the picture.)  

They've sustained our weeknight Dungeness crab hankerings, supplied pre-movie snacks of oysters and wine, and provided many a bouillabaise with clams and mussels.  They know their stuff. Taylor Shellfish Farms have been local growers of shellfish for over 100 years, and the expert staff is friendly and knowledgeable.

Taylor's has casual white tile, four or five tiny tables, with high stools for perching while slurping—it's more of a seafood deli than a full-fledged restaurant.  The hot oyster chowder bar is serve yourself, and you can grab your own rolls for dunking in chowder or buttering to go with your oysters or crab.

They have occasional seasonal specials; one day it was spot prawns, and the chatty man behind the counter dug them out with a net, and poured them into a plastic bag with some ice. Though I felt uneasy as the bag jerked around a bit on the walk home with the occasional twitching and thrashing.

As well as whole dungeness crab which you can have live, or cooked and cleaned, you can have  oysters, clams, geoduck, scallops, bread, butter, oyster chowder—decadent and heavy with cream, butter and herbs.

The oysters are sublime.  You can choose from several varieties of oysters, Kumamoto, Virginica's, Pacific, Olympias, and Shigoku, or get a mix so you can sample them all.

High quality beers, ales, and crisp white wines are on hand to sip with those oysters, and all chosen to pair beautifully with whatever seafood item you choose. 

Added bonus- arguably the best bakery in Seattle (Bakery Nouveau) sells their heavenly baguettes right by the register. Mr. Pants with his French-raised baguette fussiness has proclaimed these to be the most reminiscent of Parisian baguettes. 

There are times when patience is required, for shucking oysters takes time, even for pros like these. One of the crew, David Leck, recently won a major national oyster shucking contest (who knew there were such things?) The wait is worth it, for once you get your platter, and you begin to eat, you will indeed lose that empty feeling, begin to be happy, and make lots of plans.

Highlights: Oysters. Wine. Baguettes from Bakery Nouveau. Crab. Clams. Scallops. Spot Prawns.

Disappointments: Sometimes, they are just too popular and you can't get a seat when your oyster craving is at its peak.  Life is very, very hard.

Mr. Pants: Happy! Loves his oysters with wine, loves his oysters with ale.

Taylor Shellfish Farms on Urbanspoon

No comments:

Post a Comment