Do you like love oysters? For most people, it’s love at first sight. The beginning of a whole new year is a very good time to host a small oyster gathering! Today I’m sharing how to host a small oyster buffet party and also sharing my favorite recipe for mignonette – a delicious accompaniment for your oyster bar.

 

 

Reminiscent of enjoying a bottle of the best French champagne in a Parisian cafe and a platter or two of decadent oysters, this is a sophisticated way to entertain.  Bring joy to your palette and home, and set up an easy, beautiful oyster buffet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

With their delicate texture and the briny taste of the sea. oysters are still a luxury. And to think that when they first became “a thing” to eat here in the Americas, they were considered food for the poor.

 

Not anymore!  After they all but disappeared and were carefully coaxed back into our waters, oysters are now considered a delicacy. Serving them up with style is also part of the fun!

 

 

 

 

1. PRE-SHUCKED OR NOT?

 

Before you plan anything else decide about how you will serve your oysters.  If you have lots of space, set up a shucking station. Somewhat messy, it can be part of the whole experience that your guests might enjoy.

 

I prefer to “pre-shuck” and serve the actual oysters in their shell on platters lined with rock salt. I store shucked oysters on sheet trays in the refrigerator to keep them cold. Lining the serving pieces with rock salt instead of ice cuts down on the melted ice problem. Be sure to provide discard bowls for the shells.

 

 

 

 

 

2. PLAN YOUR PRESENTATION.

 

For this buffet, I started by layering an antique white linen French runner on a narrow table.  I love winter white, and went for a pristine almost all white table setting.

 

 

 

 

The folded antique French linen napkins are folded in half, and at the ready on one side of the table.  Little oyster forks are resting on art deco silver knife rests.  A stack of antique white oyster plates with a well in the center for the sauce {my favorite recipe is below!} make self serving the oysters easy.

 

 

 

 

Aside from collecting antique oyster plates, many oyster lovers avidly collect the antique sterling silver serving pieces for oysters, like this French vermeil {gold plated sterling silver} oyster spoon.

 

 

 

 

3. GARNISH. 

 

Most  oyster aficionados prefer to eat their oysters “naked.”  But some traditional accompaniments are usually appreciated.

 

 

Classic accompaniments include cocktail sauce, horseradish, and also mignonette. Serving a fresh baked baguette and real unsalted butter adds to the enjoyment.   I am sharing my recipe for a classic French mignonette below. {Classic mignonette is a combination of red wine vinegar, shallots, and freshly cracked black pepper.}

 

 

 

 

 

 

Try a platter of oysters with mignonette, a fresh loaf of bread and champagne!  ENJOY!

 

 

Follow these easy steps, buy the best oysters, and host an oyster buffet party! Learn more about how to eat oysters here >

 

 

 

 

HONEYCRISP APPLE MIGNONETTE

INGREDIENTS:

¼ cup good quality Champagne Vinegar
1 tablespoon Shallots, finely diced
½ teaspoon Sea Salt
½ teaspoon fresh ground Black Pepper
¼ teaspoon Sugar
1 tablespoon fresh Tarragon leaves, chopped very fine
1-2 tablespoon Honeycrisp apple, finely chopped

DIRECTIONS:

1.Add all ingredients to a bowl, and wisk together.  Refrigerate for 2-3 hours.

2. Place rock salt {or shaved ice} on serving platter just before you shuck the oysters.

3. Shuck oysters, reserving the liquid in each shell, place on platter.

4. Serve the Mignonette in a small bowl with a fork. {you want to add just mostly the chopped seasoned apple and onions, the liquid not as much.}

 

 

 

ARE YOU AN OYSTER LOVER? OR DO YOU COLLECT OYSTER RELATED ANTIQUES?