Love oysters? Then make your way to Victoria Station where oysters are going at almost half price this month, writes Tan Bee Hong
THIS is a good month to eat oysters. These molluscs are said to taste best in months with an “r”. According to chef Lundy Jean Luc of Victoria Station and The Fine Dining, this is because during the months without an “r”, oysters are busy breeding. The reproductive process uses a lot of fat storage and energy which leaves the molluscs thin, milky and frankly, quite unpalatable. Today, however, farm oysters are bred to be sterile, so the rule no longer strictly applies.
Whatever the case, not only are oysters yummy to eat but they are very nutritious and low in cholesterol. Oysters contain protein, carbohydrates and lipids. According to a report by the US National Heart and Lung Institute, oysters are ideal for those on low-cholesterol diets as they are an excellent source of vitamins A, B1 (thiamin), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), C (ascorbic acid) and D (calciferol). They also contain iron, copper, iodine, magnesium, calcium, zinc, manganese and phosphorus.
For September, Victoria Station restaurants are offering a big deal on oysters. For the promotion, Jean Luc says the oysters are brought in fresh daily.
Air-flown rock oysters from the United States, cost only RM21.90 per half dozen (a la carte menu price RM39.90). These chilled oysters are shucked to order and served on a bed of ice with the restaurant’s signature cocktail dip or tabasco sauce. But really, with oysters this fresh, all you need is a squeeze of lemon juice.
The oysters are sweet and succulent. In the mouth, they have a silky, almost sensual texture. Soft and yet firm, sweet with salty undertones that, if you close your eyes and let your mind wander, will bring you to the beach.
Purists insist on swallowing oysters whole though personally, I like to chew as it releases a fascinating palate of flavours.
But I digress. If raw oysters aren’t exactly on your list of favourites, don’t worry. Cooked oysters are also on the menu.
For kaki furai, the oysters are battered, breaded and deep fried. The chef must have improved on the recipe further as they taste even better than I remember.
Eat these hot but do be careful as a whoosh of steam escapes when you bite into one and you may scald your tongue and lips. Top the kaki furai with a teaspoonful of cocktail sauce provided.
There are a few choices of baked oysters. I try two and they are lovely in their own way. But I confess to a bias for baked rock oyster (RM43.90 per half dozen on a la carte menu) which has a strong flavour from the minced smoked chicken. I had thought the smoked meat would overpower the flavour of oyster but instead, it seems to bring the mollusc out of its shell with panache. The melted cheddar cheese topping adds to the creamy texture.
Popeye oysters are named such because of the use of chopped spinach and white sauce for the topping. A blanket of crushed croutons offers a crunchy texture that contrasts with the softness of the oyster.
Two other baked variations are oysters Mexicana with salsa and cheddar cheese and the south Italian-style ostriche arracanate with olive oil, parsley and breadcrumbs.
Tel: 03-2093 8833
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Bayan Lepas, Penang
Tel: 04-642 5988
Sg. Prai, Penang
Tel: 04-398 1288
Lunch and dinner daily.
Steaks and seafood.
Air-flown oysters at special promotion prices.
RM21.90 for six fresh oysters and RM23.90 for baked oysters.
Steakhouse with British accent
Go give it a try