Superlatives Class of 2015

Best Taste

It seems like you can’t throw a rock – or maybe in this instance, a pearl – without hitting a new oyster farm in Rhode Island. Aquaculture is the new farm to table movement in this …

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It seems like you can’t throw a rock – or maybe in this instance, a pearl – without hitting a new oyster farm in Rhode Island. Aquaculture is the new farm to table movement in this state, and it’s about time we celebrated that... which is exactly what the Ocean State Oyster Festival is going to do. “As foodies who love the Ocean State, we wondered why more attention wasn’t being made of a local gem that is world-class – our state’s oysters,” co-founder Andy Cutler says. “So, we decided to do more than just talk about it.” He, along with Don Nguyen, Frank Mullin, Stephanie Caress and Oscar, their bivalve mascot, are launching the first (and hopefully annual) event in Riverwalk Park on September 19. At the event, there will be 15-20 oyster farms present, “nearly half of the oyster growers in the state,” Andy notes, as well as a shucking contest, live music and kids activities. A ticket gets you half a dozen oysters and a local beer or glass of wine. As for Oscar? Not available for tasting. “Everyone loves Oscar,” Andy says. “He’s a pretty lucky oyster and lives in the Pawtuxet Village marina where Don keeps an eye on him daily. He may be tough on the outside, but he’s a softie on the inside.”