Switch mode

Oysters, Baby!

Traditionally known as an aphrodisiac, oysters are now being hailed as a deluxe superfood. And they are a firm favourite amongst foodies – especially when accompanied by a glass of sparkling champagne. Luca Bianchi supplies the whole of Switzerland with these sought-after delicacies and knows how to shuck them like a pro.

Swiss Deluxe Hotels Stories Summer 2021 Oysters Baby 01 Andrew Cebulka Stocksy 1825003 Ecirgb

´We import fresh oysters from France every day and send them straight on to our customers. The oysters are harvested in the morning, transported to Switzerland overnight and then forwarded directly to the customers. The price depends on the variety, country of origin, container and season.´

´There are two main types of oysters: les plates (flat) and les creuses (cupped). The oysters most people are familiar with come from France, the home of the Bélon, Marennes and Gillardeau varieties. But you can also get your hands on exceptional oysters from the Netherlands (Imperial and Wilde Wad), Germany (Sylter Royal) and Ireland (Galway and Kelly). And we mustn’t forget American and Pacific/Japanese oysters, which we are less familiar with.´

´As with all raw seafood, oysters don’t stay fresh for long. That’s why it’s important for the cold chain to be maintained when they are being transported. They need to be stored at or below 4 or 5 degrees. It can help to apply some weight or pressure to slow down their natural opening. Oysters last for around ten days, but they should always be examined to check they are still fresh.´

´Oysters taste of minerals and the salty sea, leaving behind a slightly meaty, milky, nutty aftertaste. They are classed as a superfood because they are nutritional gold mines with very little fat, a low calorie count, plenty of protein, vital minerals, trace elements and a high zinc content that boosts the immune system. And then there’s the aphrodisiac myth, which can be traced back to the high protein content.´

´In the past, it was recommended that mussels and oysters were only consumed in months containing the letter «r». This doesn’t apply now that cold chains can be maintained without a problem in the warm summer months too. Some wild oysters are only available seasonally, though. For example, wild Irish oysters have to be enjoyed between November and February.´

´Hardcore oyster fans enjoy oysters as nature created them – straight from the shell and without any accompaniments. The flavour is most intense that way. The most famous ingredients to combine with oysters are a splash of red wine vinegar with shallots, a pinch of black pepper, a squeeze of fresh lemon juice or a sip of champagne.´

´If you struggle with shucking oysters, you’ll be pleased to hear that there’s an alternative. The French sell oysters that are «facil à ouvrir» or easy to open. A special technique is used to open the shell, which is then sealed shut using wax to ensure that no air can get in. An oyster knife can then be used to open the shell with ease at the point where the wax was applied. This can all be arranged when you place your order.´

´Oysters should not be eaten if they are already open, no longer in clear water or even dry. You can also be sure that an oyster has gone off if its flesh is cloudy, very milky or even spongy and dry. And don’t forget to use the sniff test to check that an oyster still smells like fresh seawater.´

G. Bianchi AG Luca & Dario Bianchi
[email protected]

Related Stories

Swiss Deluxe Hotels, in concert with its partners Audi Switzerland and Prestige Magazine, brought together an eclectic mix of entrepreneurs, visionaries, and forward-thinkers from various sectors to spark stimulating conversations on the topic of transformation.

Discover more

Promoting a high-calibre exchange of ideas around current topics of relevance across several sectors, a new event platform created by Swiss Deluxe Hotels and partners Audi Switzerland and Prestige Magazine introduces a high-profile stage for impact-generating issues.

Discover more

Coffee is much more than just your everyday morning pick-me-up. One cup of selected brews can be enough to transport you to foreign cultures sip by sip – in this case, all the way to Latin America.

Discover more

A crackling fireside chat at The Chedi Andermatt about the future, sustainability and megatrends between Henrik Wenders, Head of Brand, Audi AG, and Jean-Yves Blatt, General Manager at The Chedi Andermatt and Hotelier of the Year 2020/2021.

Discover more

The knife was developed in collaboration with top chefs looking for a Swiss product of the highest quality and perfection. Today, sknife knives and cutlery are set in the world’s best restaurants with over 200 Michelin Stars, in over 20 Swiss Deluxe Hotels and have been awarded with 4 international design prizes.

Discover more

How seriously do you take sustainability at Moët Hennessy? Very seriously indeed! On one hand, our position as a global leader in luxury wines and spirits means that we have a great sense of responsibility towards our stakeholders and our planet.

Discover more

When the flood light poles of Letzigrund Stadium shine their gleaming light on the arena, the Weltklasse Zürich venue looks like a gigantic spaceship that just landed in the city. Perhaps, the architects’ intention had been to point to the fact that Letzigrund Stadium is an ideal stage for extra-earthly performances.

Discover more