On the Dock of the Duxbury Bay

Don’t tread on me.

It’s good to have friends in low places, like at sea level near Cape Cod. No wonder gaggles of recent grads are sticking their little necks out, clamoring to work at Island Creek Oysters. That is the view from the ICO “oysterplex” meeting center in Duxbury, MA. But before we tour the neonatal intensive care unit equivalent of ICO, let’s chop some wood for the fire, shall we?

In other news, time for a balayage highlights appointment.

Not to worry, Chappelle’s Show fans: no squirrels were harmed in the making of this ensemble. Also, I swear this wasn’t some absurdly over-styled photoshoot; I really did hack some logs in a Rachel Zoe faux-fur vest, which everyone assumes came from an animal. Really? This “fur” is as real as NYPD’s stop-and-frisk program is effective.

Duxbury Bay from Eagles Nest Point.

The remains of a long-ago abandoned treehouse.

Many of the Duxbury homes are clothed in worn, blue-grey wood siding, but not everything is so muted. This Ralph Lauren commercial was shot in a neighboring backyard.

 

How many oysters would an oyster dude shuck if a red-headed restauranteur could eat oysters? A lot. That is to say, CJ Husk can shuck ’em faster than Mario Batali can eat ’em, as evidenced by a recent shuck-off/slurp-off between the two bearded men. Below: Bryan and CJ shuck prior to a Q&A between regional oyster growers and Island Creek Oyster Bar staff, at which I, the vested outsider, inadvertently stumped them all with a question about how to describe the taste of their oysters and differentiate between the regions. The best attempt at an answer was, “Wicked briny?”

Island Creek staff meeting.

Oyster growers are good at growing oysters, not at writing bombastic tasting notes. That’s what I’m around for. It’s an excellent division of labor, because ensuring that these microscopic seeds turn into all-growns-up oysters seems really stressful.

Seed

Baby oyster cradle.

You really do need a microscope to see the oysters at this point in their lives.

Baby food.

Pretty plankton.

With Skip Bennett, papichulo patriarch to two daughters, the ICO crew and millions of oysters.

I can understand why Dana Hale, aka the Oysteress, is so enamored with her hometown and with living on the water. It’s the sort of place where salt-of-the-earth people make their own salt.

Duxbury Bay

Boil for several hours and et voila — salt.

Makes me want to settle down…at a table with two dozen oysters.

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2 comments
  1. Just… wow. I used to count oyster spat and larvae (Crassostrea virginica) captured in sodium azide solution filled PVC pipe traps that were placed in key harvesting areas back in 1987 for ONR/NRL at DUML. Those pictures of sieves and microscopes bring back memories of staining myself with rose bengal, listening to Metallica’s cover of Breadfan until the cassette tape broke, and one of those summers you never seem to forget. Thank you for the flashback.

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