All the Essentials You Need to Throw an Oyster Fest

Plate of oysters on ice with Tobasco, lemon slices, and a large cracker
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It’s believed oysters have been around for roughly 200 million years ago. No doubt the first Paleolithic oyster fest was low on modern niceties like linen napkins and silver oyster spoons, but you don’t need anything fancy to turn your own shellfish fest into a success. Just make sure you have a few simple essentials like we’ve outlined below on hand to satisfy any hungry mollusk lovers who show up.



Tried-and-True Oyster Fest Essentials

1. Oyster Knives

Raw bar shuckers wield cheap ones, so they’re good enough for you—but yes, get the tool designed for the job, not a butter knife. And get several so you’re not stuck shucking by yourself. Use our foolproof guide on how to shuck oysters.

2. Platters

Display your half-shell beauties for that raw bar vibe. Any rimmed platter that holds ice works; vintage beer trays make a statement, but cooler lids will do in a pinch.

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3. Ice

This is a non-negotiable for keeping oysters chilled and creating an authentic presentation. You need crushed ice—and lots of it. Grab double what you think you need, then a bit more.

4. Condiments

Lemon wedges, cocktail sauce, and because you’re a class act, mix champagne vinegar with minced shallots and black pepper for a zingy mignonette.

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5. Crackers

Yes, eating an oyster atop a saltine is a rookie move. But be nice to newbies, too, especially if they brought good beer.

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