Raked Oysters

Had some oysters over the weekend and unfortunately they had no taste at all. I’m told they came from VA and are raked oysters from the bottom. I’d never heard of raked oysters, but apparently a boat drags a “rake” along the bottom of the Chesapeake bay and collects them somehow. My theory is that since they aren’t on the banks and being exposed to the air, etc during the tides that somehow that affects their taste.

Anyone else ever had them or familiar with them? I believe these are what they served at the Charleston Oyster Festival this past weekend, so some of you might have experienced them too.

I’ve had the same experience with some of the nonlocal oysters.Always thought it was because they weren’t fresh.Wonder how long ago they were gathered?

The use of a rake to gather them will have nothing to do with the taste. You use a clam shell rake to gather them in deeper water. Sounds like you got a batch out from Mississippi or Louisiana. Oysters from that area don’t usually have much salt content. :question:

Odd, most oysters from Chesapeake bay are pretty good, depending on where they are harvested maybe not as salty as ours, but very sweet.

Swig and Swing had em at their pig and oyster roast…a bag near the oyster smoker had a Virginia tag. Except for the mild smoke flavor, they were tasteless.

“I am constantly amazed at the stupidity of the general public.”
~my dad

2007 Grady White 222 Fisherman / 250 Yamaha
Simrad NSS evo2 and G4
1- 23 boy that won’t move out)
1 - 19 year old (fishing maniac)
1 - wife (The Warden)


Oysters lose flavor the longer they sit. Big oysters have less flavor. The more the oyster blisters the fresher it was. Oyster can live in a muddy sack in the cold for a long time and taste fresh. Once cleaned they age faster if you clean with fresh well or rain water they lose flavor. If you clean with treated/city water you can kill them. Cleaning with salt water is best. If you ever buy boxed oysters and the bottom of the box is wet it means the oyster have been in there a while and got hotter then they like and wet them selfs. This takes from flavor qnd quality. If you shuck a oyster and it looks green or thick and white its old. If you have some oysters that are open and cant hold there shell shut when you touch them they are bad. My mom use to work the oyster festivals and others like it and would bring home extra boxes. The oysters would be from all over but all similar. Giant singles with no flavor. Id say 90 percent of the time there were quality issues. These were out of large orders for large events so that could impact quality. Ive had a lot of raw oysters from around the world and can tell if it was a quality issue or if it was just the oyster. A folly river oyster is a very good oyster. Charleston oysters are good in general because we have strong tides and good salinity.

Man the big singles at Charlie Brown seafood are delicious. I believe they come from Texas

I’ve had more than one batch of gulf oysters over the years that were that way. Had some from Fla, Ala, Miss, La, and Tx. Nice large and pretty just, not much taste. The sm-med ones and clusters were all good. The ones I remember as so-so and not much taste were the large select singles in a box. Dito the comments above on white or green looking - not being fresh. Local oysters here will spoil you with the sweet salty taste for sure!

J Ford

All of these are the reasons that people from all over like our oysters the best. When out of towners come in and say they’ve had all kinds of oysters, then have local oysters here and claim they’re the best…there’s a reason. I, too have eaten oysters from all over the place, and NOTHING compares to our local oysters.

Wadmalaw native
16’ Bentz-Craft Flats Boat

Never had a bad SC oyster.

“Apathy is the Glove into Which Evil Slips It’s Hand”, but really, who cares?

Originally posted by DFreedom

Never had a bad SC oyster.

“Apathy is the Glove into Which Evil Slips It’s Hand”, but really, who cares?

I can say the same. Good stuff. In really cold weather in a couple of spots I go that get land locked at low tide, I’ll eat a belly full raw waiting on tide to turn. Be surprised the big ones you can find that have broken off the cluster.

Interesting post and comments! I also have had Oysters from all over and usually like them all! TX and LA Oysters taste fine and are always plump!
The Oysters here in northeast Florida are small on average and not so plump. They taste fine! See attached picture. That’s an average size FL Oyster with a big bluepoint Oyster from off the CT coast. The Bluepoints from up north are my favorites Stonger flavor, big and plump probably all due to the colder water.
My least favorite Oyster has been from VA; I agree with everyones comments. Small and tasteless. I don’t know why that would be?

New Smyrna Beach, FL