On a recent Sunday, a friend of mine invited me to come out to Brooklyn for a visit. Typically, I would politely decline citing some sort of other obligation I had committed myself to. Its not that I do not like Brooklyn, but like to many other Manhattanites, it always seems like a bit of schlep. This Sunday, however, was different. My friend mentioned wanting to do a small oyster crawl, and I was immediately onboard.
Getting off at the Bergen Street Subway stop on the 2 train, I met my friend on
the corner of Bergen Street and 5th Avenue. It was on the early side, so we picked up some coffee at a cute neighborhood spot and took a slow stroll down 5th Avenue towards our first stop. We arrived at The Blue Ribbon Brasserie just as their neon oysters sign was lit up and their doors opened. Wanting to partake in their happy hour special, we sat at the bar, strategically placing ourselves near the oyster shucking station. Its always a treat to see those guys in action. And today we were lucky to be in the presence of the third place winner in the most recent shucking contest at Grand Central Oyster Bar.
On this particular day, Blue Ribbon was offering Malpeques for their $1.50 deal, Hama Hamas and Barron Points. Wanting to try them all, we ordered four of each for a pretty dozen.
The Malpeques, typical to the East Coast oyster that they are, were salty, briny, lacy and ended on a clean note. Not much of a lingering taste.
The Barron Points, although from the West Coast, were briny, but very meaty, with a metallic finish. And the best of the bunch, the Hama Hamas were clean, deep cupped, very plump, ending with a taste of the sea.
To complete our first round of oysters, we each had the famous Blue Ribbon oyster shooter. Although usually not much of a fan, this one was quite delicious. It was spicy, and had a kick at the end.
With a round of scrumptious oysters in our bellies, we were ready to proceed to our next stop, Cornelius on Vanderbilt Avenue. For their daily 5-7 happy hour special they had $1 Malpeques, as well as full priced Fisher Islands, Kushis, and Kumamotos.
The Malpeques were some of the biggest I have ever seen, close to three inches, and quite delicious as well. They were fresh, crisp and incredibly satisfying. The Fisher Islands were salty, briny with not much of a finish. Very similar to the Malpeques we had at Blue Ribbon actually. The Kushi, were creamy, a bit salty and had a lingering taste of the sea. And the Kumamotos were as always, deep cupped, sweet and creamy.
Being that it was a Sunday, I had to cut our oyster crawl short, and head back to Manhattan. But with so many more places to be discovered, the oysterblog will be back to Brooklyn soon. Stay tuned!
Blue Ribbon Brooklyn
280 5th Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11215
565 Vanderbilt Avenue
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