Our southern farm includes 1.37 acres along the intracoastal waterway just south of Sea Breeze, NC. The average salinity is 27.57 ppt, giving the oysters a salty-sweet start with a buttery finish. The soil is almost entirely sand which makes for much easier walking and farm management. When first proposing the location of this farm, we noticed a small saltwater creek that brings long leaf pine flavors into the water. This farm also sits adjacent to a NOAA documented shipwreck (it looks like a football on the NOAA mapping tool). We have not found any buried treasure as of yet, and no harvested oysters have grown pearls, but that doesn’t stop us from constantly looking!
Our northern farm includes 2.35 acres in the estuaries right behind Figure 8 Island. Because the farm is less than half of a mile from the ocean inlet, the average salinity is much higher at 34.80 ppt. Oysters from this farm absorb the taste of the sea while still finishing with savory afterthoughts. This farm contains a few good inches of sediment known to us as “pluff mud”, also adding to the savory flavor.
Elements of the individual farm certainly define taste, but a complete description of an oyster’s flavor also includes the texture of the oyster. Texture is developed by the growing methods used during the oyster’s 9-18 month growth cycle. On all of our farms, we use a combination of growing gear, which grow our oysters entirely on the top of the water column. We bring them out of the water to “sunbathe” one to two times per week which develops a tender meaty oyster housed inside a deep cupped strong shell.
We pride ourselves on being able to plant and harvest a sustainable food source while cleaning the waters where we live.