The photograph says it all. It may have rained but the Cafebarge was abuzz, The 2nd Annual Tarbert World Oyster Shucking Contest took place at the weekend on Cafebarge, a restaurant on a Dutch barge in Tarbert, Loch Fyne.
The event was part of the popular Tarbert Seafood Festival which attracts visitors from around the world.
Participants opened and ‘shucked’ three Loch Fyne oysters against the clock – points were added or deducted for presentation or skill level.
‘In effect, I awarded points according to whether I liked someone or not which is completely in the spirit of the contest,’ joked Janice Kramer the commere of the event. ‘I particularly enjoyed disqualifying Tony Archibold who, it turned out is a professional oyster farmer, even though he had the fastest time.’
The overall winner was Linda Arnussen who was one of a group of visiting Swedes on an exchange visit to Argyll, organised by Tarbert’s Jim Paterson who runs Local Produce Argyll and other eco-projects in Kintyre.
The oysters were donated by Prentice Seafood of Tarbert and all the proceeds go to the Seafood Festival coffers.
‘This has proved to be a very popular event at the festival,’ said Michael Casey, a partner of Cafebarge. ‘It’s a hoot as most of the competitors have never opened an oyster. But most of them seem to enjoy eating them.’
And non one has reported missing fingers following the inexpert shucking.
The photograph above of Linda Arnussen is by Jim Paterson.