French Alienor Speciale Oysters have a unique green hue to their shells, and come from Arcachon Bay, found along the Atlantic Ocean, on the coast of southwest France. They have a balanced, lightly briny taste, with hints of hazelnut. They’re mild and delicate oysters, making them universally accessible, appealing to oyster beginners as well as seasoned connoisseurs.
Enjoy these oysters the most natural way—freshly shucked, with an optional squeeze of lemon. You can also try them with a splash of cocktail sauce, or red wine vinegar mignonette. If you prefer to cook your oysters, you can grill them, or bake them with cheese. Pair with a glass of Champagne for an elevated experience.
Many will say that the best time to eat oysters would be at the end of the year, during months that end in “r.” This is not really due to its quality, but rather a tradition dating back to the start of the 19th century. Napoleon III signed a decree in 1853 prohibiting the collection of oysters from May to August. This was because, at the time, there was no structure to oyster cultivation yet. They were harvested on natural banks, which meant shortages could happen at any moment. To limit risk of depletion, the decree was signed to allow the oysters ample time to reproduce. Of course, at present, with the advent of modern cultivation, there is no longer a risk of shortage.
Store your box of fresh, unshucked oysters in your fridge, keeping the temperature between 0 to 5°C. Keep them covered with a damp cloth, flat side up, to increase shelf-life. To enjoy them at their freshest, please consume them within 48 hours.
When you’re ready to shuck your oysters, take a sharp knife (a vegetable knife or, ideally, an oyster shucking knife) and hold the oyster, round-side down and pointed side facing you, between a tea towel. Wiggle the knife into the pointy end and twist it until the shell comes open.