Skip to comments.Gulf Oil Affecting Chicago Dinner Plates
Posted on 06/22/2010 9:03:22 PM PDT by TornadoAlley3
The culinary consequences of the Gulf Oil disaster are hitting Chicagoans where it hurts -- in the stomach.
Red Lobster on Tuesday announced that oysters will no longer be available on the menu. The popular seafood chain has had to remove the item because their fishermen suppliers are finding it more economically advantageous to help clean the oil rather than collect the shellfish.
In fact, the company that supplies Gulf oysters to more than 400 Red Lobsters has closed its doors altogether. AmeriPure co-owner and founder Patrick Fahey said he hasn't been able to "get any meaningful volume of oysters" into his shop on a regular basis.
"We can not get them," he said, according to the New York Examiner.
Things aren't so bad at Chicago's largest oyster wholesaler. Plitt Seafood says it's still able to supply its customers with the shellfish, but it's at a premium.
The cost of oysters has increased by 25 percent, and Plitt has turned to the East and West Coasts as a replacement for Gulf oysters.
"Now everybody has less sources to pull from, so we are seeing a little bit of an issue with supply. A lot of it is in anticipation for what happens when the other carriers have to close, said Elizabeth Treadwell, Plitt Seafood's Director of Marketing.
But the water that the oyster grows in largely affects its taste, and East and West Coast oysters do not taste the same as Gulf coast oysters.
Currently, about 30 percent of Gulf fishing area is closed as a precautionary measure. Plitt anticipates a decrease in production anywhere from 25 to 75 percent during this coming fall and winter.
While oysters may be slowly disappearing from menus, they are not the only shellfish at risk. Almost 80 percent of domestic shrimp sales originate from the Gulf.
"We are just hoping they get the problem under control," Treadwell said.
Interestingly (or not) there is apparently a bountiful amount of oysters of the coast of South Carolina. I saw an “oyster roast” on the travel channel. The host and his two local guides bought a huge honking bag of oysters for like 20 bucks. Cooked up enough shuck and slurp for about a dozen folks.
The trouble (according to the show’s host) is, the variety that grows down there tends to clump together in big colonies, and is not generally considered commercially viable because of the size and work involved.
Bubba Gump Shrimp also closed it’s doors.
(My long form was signed by a famous criminal, Richard J. Daley, Sr.)
“because their fishermen suppliers are finding it more economically advantageous to help clean the oil rather than collect the shellfish.”
I thought they were out of work and broke...
I just made dem gumbo wit South American shrimp.
We had an excellent harvest this year, but the oyster season has just recently closed in this area (Southeast NC and Northeast SC), so those will not be available until next Fall. However, our oysters are better than just about any except those from the Apalachicola area of the Florida Gulf coast. They have a much fresher and saltier taste than most of the Gulf oysters.
Let them eat cake and freeze this winter. Chicago should be fenced in and turned into a zoo. Daley could be the white alligator exhibit and O could be the giraffe and Rahm could clean up the elephant compound.
***Red Lobster on Tuesday announced that oysters will no longer be available on the menu. ***
So? There is no “R” in May, june, july, august! Just like it was back in the “good old days”!
Am I feeling sorry for these “Chicagoans”? Nope....
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.