An App to Track the Atlantic Oyster (Perfect for Eat Drink Local Week)

The app to help you keep your oysters in order.

This week’s Edible TV segment on NY1 is on Long Island oysters, one of seven ingredients (along with lamb, yogurt, green garlic, strawberries, rhubarb and peas) we’re highlighting in honor of Eat Drink Local Week.

That’s because over the past decade as oyster farming technologies have advanced (as described in this Edible East End piece last fall) dozens of tiny new oyster brands from Long Island have arrived each with their own particular terroir–based on salinity, water temperature, and what’s edible in their piece of the Atlantic.

While we’re certainly fans of West Coast species, one of our favorite past-times (no, seriously!) is to order a mixed dozen or so of crassostrea Virginica from our region and compare the briny tastes of our watery border in bivalve form. That’s why we spoke to Michael Cressotti of the Mermaid Inn and Mermaid Oyster bar — because the chef helps serve 9,000 of the little guys a week from various waters around the country, the company developed a smart phone and tablet application earlier this year called Oysterpedia. (There’s a “lite” version with about 60 types for free.) It’s a picture-dictionary of varieties: Not only can you search by name get notes on how they taste and see what they look like, but you can rate them, too. And like the menu board at Mermaid, these days the list gets updated all the time.

 

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Rachel Wharton is the former deputy editor of Edible Brooklyn and Edible Manhattan. She won a 2010 James Beard food journalism award, holds a master’s degree in Food Studies from New York University, and has more than 15 years of experience as a writer, editor and reporter. A North Carolina native and a former features food reporter for the New York Daily News, she edited the Edible Brooklyn cookbook and was the co-author of both Handheld Pies and DiPalo's Guide to the Essential Foods of Italy. Her work also appears in publications such as The New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and Saveur.