TATHRA Oysters have once again been named champion Sydney rock oyster exhibit at the Sydney Royal Fine Food Show, confirming their place as the most awarded oysters of the Far South Coast
In addition they picked up two gold medals and two silvers – from their four entries.
Grown in the protected waters of Nelsons Lagoon in Mimosa Rocks National park, situated between the seaside enclaves of Mogareeka and Tanja, owner and farmer Gary Rodely feels the estuary is the key to producing the award winning flavours.
“I think in the end it comes down to our location, the national park - the whole estuary is surrounded by forest, which adds to the flavour of our oysters,” Mr Rodely said.
The presence of middens around the Australian coast exemplifies the long-time love of the oyster and other shellfish in this part of the world, which is best eaten freshly shucked.
During the competition the judges slowly taste each numbered entry, their taste buds on the hunt for fat, creamy textures.
“You really have to know the estuary you are growing in,” Mr Rodely said.
“Different corners of the estuary produce different conditions of oysters and we process so many here that we have an idea of what a good batch is.”
The business has been running for 27 years and has now won over 130 awards.
“The wins help the marketing of our product and will hopefully grow the brand name,” Mr Rodely said.
It is a brand that is growing quickly, with oysters couriered to restaurants in Sydney and Melbourne including Rockpool, Bridgeroom, Sepia, and Boathouse.
Along with Tathra Oysters’ twelfth consecutive win, Wapengo Rocks of Bermagui picked up one silver and three bronze awards, with Stirling Oysters of Nethercote also taking a gold award in the aquaculture class.
South Coast farmers dominated the awards with Superior Oysters of Merimbula, Hazelgrove Oysters and Merimbula Gourmet Oysters of Pambula, Wonboyn Rock Oyster of Wonboyn Lake and McAsh Oysters of Moruya also taking out major awards.