While Blue Island Oysters has its hatchery in West Sayville, its oyster farm is off Captree. And last Friday was my day to visit.
In 2000, Chris Quartuccio acquired a former bait shack and the lease for a surrounding six acres, and Blue Island Oysters was born. Chris chose the location for its proximity to The Fire Island Inlet, where the water would be cleanest.
Here we are arriving to dock.
Here we were greeted most effusively by Bowsun, The Hungarian Vizsla.
Bowsun would be taking the tour with us.
Blue Island Oysters offers regular tours of its farm for parties of fourteen, public and private. It is at once a communing with nature, an educational seminar, and a feast of oysters. One is encouraged to bring one’s own champagne, craft beer, or wine.
I preferred to wash mine down with Drink The Bay Clean. I’d say an American Pale Ale was a good choice here! But that came later.; First was a presentation about the farm itself. Chris showed us how these tiny baby oysters, fed on a variety of algae, grow to dime size, where they can be placed in oyster bags in the bay. The oysters are then periodically checked for growth, and tumbled so that they grow thick and meaty rather than thin and long.
A fascinating process, and clearly A LOT of work!
Next up was a kayak tour of the salt marshes. Just stunningly beautiful. About half of the 14 were coming out from Brooklyn. How wonderful it must have been for them in particular to experience this!
From there we bid a fond farewell to the farm and Bowsun. It was a magical day! Thank you Blue Island for having me as your guest!