Lieutenant Island Oysters (Atlantic Oysters, Crassostrea virginica) grow across Cape Cod harbor Wellfleet Harbor from the oyster beds of the famous Wellfleet Oyster and enjoy the same cold waters that encourage the oysters to build up stores of glycogen - sweetening the oyster's flavor, salinity around 2.8%, big, fast moving twice daily tides that average 12 feet and bath the oysters in nutrient rich water originating in Northern Maine and the Canadian Maritime Provinces, the same environment and the same clean water. Like Wellfleets, Lieutenant Island Oysters are beach and bottom cultured.
These oysters are a mouthful with oval to teardrop shaped deeply ridged shells averaging more that 3.5" accompanied by above average depth cups and an above average meat to shell ratio. The oyster smells like a tidal pool on a cool autumn afternoon with clean fresh sea breeze aromas lightly tinged by earthiness and seaweed. The shells are 10% to 15% liquor and because of their size you get a nice shot of salty, minerally, briny liquor that ready you for a mouthful of oyster. The meat is full bodied, meaty, buttery and clean and while it has a melt in your mouth quality, it does have a little chew but not residual membrane or gristle. The bite releases sweet meaty flavors with some melon and a hint of cheese leading to a mineral, salty, slightly astringent finish. I am drinking Taksago Ginga Shizuku Divine Droplets Junmai Daiginjo Sake (15.6% alcohol by volume). It is a delicate, spicy sake from Hokkaido with a light banana smell and melon and mineral flavors and a mild acidity. It is exactly what you wan to drink with Lieutenant Island Oysters as the oysters and Sake match each other's intensity and the Sake's fruit flavors delightfully complement and bring out the oyster's melon flavors. The Sake and the oyster have a degree of mineralness that work together. The oyster's salt highlights the Sake's sweetness while the Sake mellow the salt to bring out more of the oyster's fruit. I give the oysters and the pairing 90.