Point Reyes National Seashore area is a culinary mecca. It is a National Wilderness Preserve, a protected farming treasure chest and the home of Tomales Bay, a long, narrow inlet of the Pacific Ocean, the center of this states oyster hub. The Bay is approximately 15 miles long and averages nearly 1.0 miles wide, effectively separating the Point Reyes Peninsula (where my second home is) from the mainland of Marin County.
Tomales Bay has a few scrumptious oyster spots that we frequent, the Marshall Store, Tony's (the new place), Nick's Cove (old school dinner house) and Hog Island Oyster Farm, they're all a scenic 50 mile drive up from San Francisco across the Golden Gate Bridge following route one. These oysters are always spanking fresh and just simply outstanding.
We love the grilled oysters at Marshall Store and the "shuck your own" picnic days at Hog Island are great too. Or just buy a sack of oysters packed in ice, some local cheeses, local breads, local beer & wine and hit the road, there's so many awesome places to enjoy in this area (check out the map of the peninsula for ideas).
Getting oysters right out of the bay is the best way to ensure freshness & an awesome experience. Go for the grilled ones - so incredible with the local hearth baked bread, or the raw ones prepared ready to slurp down or at Shuck Your Own Day at Hog Island, or order them to take away. Digging an oyster knife in the sweet spot, at a 30 degree angel on a hard surface works best for me, it is fun and easy to learn. Here's a great how to video.
I hope to see you out there!
Lynette La Mere, Pure Joy Catering Executive Chef
photo credit Lucas Oliver Oswald