How to choose your oysters:
Smell: Fresh oysters should smell like sea water. They should not have an overwhelming ‘fishy’ smell.
Sight: Oysters should be kept on ice, in a well-drained refrigerated case. The shells should be mostly closed and should close tightly when tapped with a finger.
Touch: The oyster shells should be scratchy and may have barnacles; avoid oysters with lots of algae, seaweed or mossy patches, as these may have been kept in a tank with poor water circulation.
Hold the oyster firmly with a dishcloth so that the ‘open’ end is facing you. Using a short, sharp knife pry it open gently.
You can eat your oyster au naturelle. They’re clearly not to everyone’s taste and it’s difficult to describe the flavour or texture to someone who has never tried one!
Help the detachment from the shell with a spoon and then squeeze some lemon juice into the half shell. Eat directly from the shell by tipping the whole thing into your mouth, then swallowing without chewing.