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Shuck This

If there was ever a food that could entice me to enter an eating contest, oysters would be it. In fact, I’m pretty sure I could win the eleventh annual competition at Jax with the right teammates. Every year, Jax Fish House throws an oyster-week celebration that comes with great food and drink specials and culminates in an Oyster Eating Contest.

Teams of four are presented with a tray of beautiful pre-shucked oysters and then begin pouring the slippery suckers — dressed with as much lemon juice, tartar and hot sauce as they like — down their throats. The record to beat, from two years ago, is 116 per team, or 29 per person. As a girl of normal height and weight who can easily down a dozen oysters in a sitting, I find that number rather unimpressive, so I’m pondering testing my own speed-eating skills.

You should do the same, or at least head over to watch the mayhem at 2 p.m. and partake in the final day of 11 oysters for $11 or the Oyster Prix Fixe Menu, a three-course meal of Penn Cover Oyster Three Ways, Togarashi Seared Striped Marlin and Mother of Pearl Dusted Chocolate Truffle for $35. The contest costs $400 per team, but the winners get a trip to Las Vegas, and everything benefits the Gathering Place, a daytime shelter for homeless women and their children.

Go to to register, or stop by 1539 17th Street to sign up and practice on a plate of 11 — or 22. Anyone who orders oysters this week can also enter to win A Dozen Dozens: a dozen free oysters every month for a year.
Sun., March 22, 2009


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