Local oysters are among the nation's best

THERE was no doubt about the quality of produce at Oysters in the Vines yesterday.

The annual Oysters in the Vines at Cassegrain Winery promotes awareness about the oyster industry and our wines and boutique beers.

Royal Agricultural Society oyster judge and oyster lover John Susman enjoyed tucking into locally grown oysters.

“The oysters we’ve been eating are in spectacular condition right now,” Mr Susman said. “The growers generally have really got a very clear understanding of how to produce a premium oyster.”

He said the oyster growers were also showing a real understanding about what consumers looked for.

Oysters in the Vines was a fantastic event, he said, adding there was a lot of synergy between oysters and the wine world.

ABC Local Radio presenter Simon Marnie judges the Royal Agricultural Society’s prestigious food produce award, the President’s Medal.

The former Royal Agricultural Society oyster judge said the standard of oysters at yesterday’s event was a credit to the growers.

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“We are seeing today oysters in peak condition,” he said. “They’re beautifully presented, they’re plump and they have a complex flavour.”

Winemaker John Cassegrain believes our area produces the best oysters in Australia.

The day included an “oyster 101” to increase people’s understanding of the mollusc.

“A lot of people don’t eat oysters because they are scared of them,” Mr Cassegrain said.

Mr Cassegrain said fresh shucked oysters went well with chardonnay and sparkling wine.

Varying preparations of oysters open the door to different flavours.

“There’s an oyster in cream sauce that goes really well with a sparking red,” he said.

“It’s a great opportunity for people to try different methods and the recipes are so simple.”

Other recipes can be matched with our boutique beer.

The menu included natural oysters, Japanese inspired oyster shooters, French inspired oysters with mignonette sauce and oysters with Asian dressing.

The oysters were recommended with Cassegrain wine or beer including Wicked Elf and Black Duck.

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