Cabin Cove Oysters in South Bristol

October 24, 2011 § 1 Comment


We were looking for something special to do last Saturday afternoon: perhaps a scenic drive to a picturesque destination by the sea and some good vittles. We hit the jackpot with a trip to Cabin Cove Oysters in South Bristol. I heard about this new company via the Portland Food Map. Cabin Cove Oysters is the brainchild of business partners Michael McAllister and Juliet Totten. They have a nifty Airstream trailer they’ve converted into the Shuck Truck, from which they serve up fresh oysters at weddings and other special events. After reading about them on a blog or two, I contacted Michael to find out if we could visit. I was sort of thinking they would have a little shop like the Glidden Point Oyster Sea Farm in nearby Edgecomb. Michael responded right away and said we were welcome to visit him on Saturday as he would be in South Bristol working in the garden. Hmmm, garden? I formed a mental picture of a renaissance man simultaneously cultivating fresh vegetables by land and Pemaquid oysters by sea. Intriguing. We arranged to meet him at the town dock on Saturday afternoon.

The drive down route 129 from Damariscotta is beautiful. Although the foliage gurus say we’re “past peak,” there was still plenty of autumn color to admire along the way. Upon arriving in South Bristol, we realized there is, in fact, no shop. Instead, Michael picked us up in a small motor boat and we headed out to his “garden” where the oysters start out as seed oysters, or spat, and grow into delicious Pemaquids. It’s a garden because it’s not really big enough to be an oyster farm like Glidden Point’s operation further up the Damariscotta River. Here’s the garden, a series of floating plastic baskets full of oysters.

Michael was a great guide to oyster cultivation. And, best of all, he very generously let us sample some of the merchandise. Obviously, none of us had ever had fresher oysters. They were absolutely delicious, briny and crisp.

Thanks to Michael for spending part of his Saturday showing us his garden in one of Maine’s lovelier coves and sharing part of the harvest with us. It was a perfect field trip.

If you have a wedding or other special event, think about including the Shuck Truck. Your guests will love it!

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