Raise an Elbow to Shucker Paddy

Monahan's Seafood Market | Fresh Whole Fish, Fillets, Shellfish, Recipes, Catering & Lunch Counter-Ann Arbor, Michigan

oysters on the half shellHeading back from Muldrew Lake on our yearly Canadian holiday, we stopped for a couple days in Toronto. Visiting all the great neighborhoods and markets like St. Lawrence and Kensington, it’s always a treat to eat our way through the city and unwind from all that tough fishing (ha ha!)

I’d read about this fellow named Patrick (Paddy) McMurray who is a world champion competitive oyster shucker and holds the Guinness Book of World Records title for most oysters shucked in one minute (38)! Paddy works his magic from his restaurant, Starfish Oyster Bed and Grill. We walked in on a Saturday night in August expecting to have to wait for a seat at the bar, but to our surprise we snagged a couple stools right in front of Paddy’s shucking station! I guess a lot of locals were on vacation, not to mention that a million people were feasting at the Taste of Danforth (the yearly humongous Greek festival across town).

Watching an oyster shucker of this caliber was amazing! With his own custom made knife, it has a handle that was custom molded for his hand, he effortlessly shucked at least 100 oysters as we sat in awe. The fact that he could schmooze with his customers, quietly work with employees while filling iced plates with oysters, and hand grating fresh horseradish was quite impressive. We enjoyed lots of oysters that night along with a few pints of Harp. Paddy recommended Green Gables oysters from Prince Edward Island and Wellfleets from Cape Cod (one of the favorites at our market). The Green Gables were similar to Malpeques, but they seemed plumper and maybe a bit sweeter.

I had planned on taking another vacation season break from the fish report this week, but I had to tell you about Paddy McMurray!

Come down to the Market this weekend. We’ll have Pemaquids from the Damariscotta River in Maine and something delicious from the Pacific (not sure what yet).

Here’s a little more on oysters

And here’s my recipe for barbecued oysters

Monahan's Seafood

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