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Celebrate the Olympia Native Oyster

  • Seattle Central College / Culinary Academy 1716 Harvard Avenue Seattle, WA, 98122 United States (map)

Come and learn about the Olympia Native Oyster, and sample an array of our region’s finest oysters and accompanying oyster-friendly wines and cider.

Of the many kinds of oysters grown in Washington, only one, the Olympia, is native to this part of the world. But times have been hard for this indigenous delicacy, which was widely over-harvested to the point of depletion in the 1800s and early 1900s.

The Olympia Native Oyster is now hand cultivated by a few family-run shellfish farms. It is one of 24 plants and animals from the Pacific Northwest to be included in Slow Food’s Ark of Taste—a living catalog of more than 200 delicious and culturally significant foods in danger of extinction.

David George Gordon

David George Gordon

Join Slow Food Seattle on March 6th at the Seattle Culinary Academy at Seattle Central College as we celebrate the Olympia Native Oyster. The event will include a short presentation on the history of oyster farming in Washington by David George Gordon, principal author of Heaven on the Half Shell: The Story of the Northwest’s Love Affair with the Oyster.  As Science Writer for Washington Sea Grant (a position he held for 15 years), Gordon’s had numerous opportunities to study shellfish aquaculture up close and personal.

Following the presentation, guests will be escorted into the atrium for a sampling of half-shell oysters from The Olympia Oyster Company and Taylor Shellfish Farms. The oysters will be paired with Chateau Ste. Michelle Dry Riesling and 2 Towns Ciderhouse BrightCider. A non-alcoholic option will also be served.

Jodie Toft / Deputy Director of Puget Sound Restoration Fund

Jodie Toft / Deputy Director of Puget Sound Restoration Fund

During the tasting, Call Nichols, Restaurant Direct Sales Manager with Taylor Shellfish Farms, will briefly introduce the varieties of oysters on our plates and explain how to select and serve the “perfect” oyster. Jodie Toft, Deputy Director of the Puget Sound Restoration Fund will then discuss the threats to regional water quality and other challenges to modern oyster farming in the state.

You won’t want to miss this extraordinary opportunity to savor the Northwest’s intertidal treasures and learn more about ways we can help the Olympia Native Oyster thrive in our waters.


Tickets available on Eventbrite:

• General Admission -- $40

• Admission for Members of Slow Food -- $35
Not a member of Slow Food? Our members get exclusive access or discount and pre-sale tickets to many Slow Food events. We are a volunteer-led, non-profit 501c3 organization. Your membership fee is considered a tax deductible donation. Don’t forget to choose Seattle as your preferred chapter. Click here to join us.

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