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  • Lunch Daily: 11:30am
  • Dinner Daily: 4 – 9pm
Tags: Pacific Northwest Seafood

How to Pair Wine with a Seafood Dinner

Go beyond dinner and become a wine expert with four great seafood pairing ideas of the Oyster Bar on Chuckanut Drive!

Following the Pacific Northwest culinary traditions:
What grows together goes together”

What grows together goes together” – This proverb is used to guide wine and food pairing globally. The rule prescribed to combine the grown in the area food with local wine.

Globalization, migration, and consumption trends have resulted in the emergence of hybrid cuisines that significantly feature the Pacific Northwest culinary traditions.

The modern cooking style of the Pacific Northwest is traditional and modern at the same time.
In the following 4 sets, we reflected the rich traditions of diverse cultures, excellent wines, the best local seafood, and advanced cooking methods.

#1 – Muscadet Sevre et Maine (36 $) with Baked Oysters (16.50 $) or Fried oysters (22.95 $)

The classic pairing for oysters, dry, firm, clean and refreshing Muscadet will never frustrate you! With wonderful freshness and minerality, it will be a great match for our Baked oysters or Fried oysters.

Importantly, Muscadet will be a harmonious combination for other ingredients of the dishes too. The difference is in notes.

If you choose Baked Oysters with pancetta, you will enjoy a more traditional heirloom tomato taste. Fried Oysters, in contrast, will surprise you with apple aioli fragrant savor.

#2 – New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc (38 $) with Salmon Pastrami Sandwich (21.95 $)

Go beyond the traditional pairing champagne–cured salmon and enrich your dining experience with dry and fruity New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc.

This pairing will woo you with the original contrasting taste of the fresh and tropical wine and the carefully selected house-made rye bread and Emmental cheese.

#3 – Montepulciano d’Abruzzo (70 $) with Cioppino (25.95 $)

While choosing the perfect wine combination for Cioppino, it’s essential to consider the rich ingredients of the rustic American-Italian fishy stew. Mussels, clams, scallops, shrimp, and fish, simmered with fennel and tomatoes in a spicy saffron stew.

This means that both white and red wines will go well.
Experiment and pick red Montepulciano d’Abruzzo! This Italian lighter is incredibly aromatic with plenty of peppery notes and it will beautifully complement Cioppino thanks to its pleasing acidity and low tannins.

#4 – Dibon – Cava (31 $) with Crab Cakes (23.50 $)

Our original crabmeat cakes are combined with mango chutney, curry aioli, and sautéed vegetables. Such rich flavors can work perfectly with lots of sparkling wines or champagne.
With its impressive floral aromas and pear/melon-like notes, Catalonian Dibon-Cava will be the perfect accompaniment for these cakes.

Like champagne, Cava is produced with the application with the same method but with different grapes, Macabeu. Their tastes are similar to green almonds and have floral aromatics and a lemony flavor.

Try more original wine food combinations on the cozy patio of the Oyster Bar while enjoying the picturesque scenery of Samish Bay. Call 360-223-5811.

The 4 Seasons of Seafood at the Oyster Bar

Seafood, like fruit and vegetables, has its seasons. Let’s learn how to incorporate in-season seafood of the Pacific Northwest into our diets and benefit from it!

3 benefits of seafood seasonality

  • Health: caught undeveloped properly fish lacks minerals, nutrients, and vitamins.
  • Economic:  a seasonal increase in supply makes fish more affordable.
  • Sustainable: seafood populations migrate in and out of local areas. Consuming seasonal foods helps to prevent poaching and breaking migratory patterns.

Explore seasonal seafood in the Pacific Northwest with the Oyster Bar!

In the Pacific Northwest, about 70 species are harvested throughout the year. Some of them are available during all seasons. Such as salmon, oyster, trout, rockfish, octopus, sea scallops, etc.

Collaborating with the best local harvesters, we always have most of these types of fish. This, in turn, ensures regular updates for our seasonal menu.

Particularly popular with our guests, oysters feature our specialties. You can try them in two variations.

Baked Oysters (16.50 $) is one of the highly-ranked dishes. Served with pancetta, heirloom tomato, and spices it appeals to our visitors due to its simplicity.

Similarly, seafood admirers love our Fried Oysters (22.95 $). We serve them with apple aioli and sautéed vegetables.

Salmon Pastrami Sandwich (21.95 $) with in-house smoked fish with homemade rye bread is another popular choice on our menu. Combined with Emmental cheese and smoked sauerkraut, it’s an original culinary delight.

Calamari Golden fried rings and tentacles with saffron lemon aioli are the most popular winter choice of our visitors.

Spring is the time of crab! To enhance its health benefits, we have created Chilled Seafood Entrée Salad (32.50 $) with prawns and fruit, avocado, mango, feta cheese, and boiled eggs seasoned with Serrano chili.

In summer, we offer our guests native to the North West mussels with local vegetables. Our Steamed Mussels (18.00 $) go well with leeks, fennel, white wine, saffron tomato cream, and fresh thyme.

The autumn vegetable variety is vividly demonstrated in our Atlantic Cod Tacos (23.95 $) with cabbage jicama slaw, cilantro, red onion, arbol chili sauce, avocado, and crème Fraiche.

The Oysters of the Pacific Northwest

 

Pacific Northwest oysters

Going clockwise from the lemon slice we have:
Mirada, Cranberry Creek, Rock Pt., Shigoku, Kumamoto, and Kusshi Oysters.

 

The Oyster Bar began in the 1920s as a small shack dedicated to selling oysters to Chuckanut Drive travelers. Nearly 100 years later, we now offer a variety of upscale seafood dishes, but our hearts remain on the half-shell, which is why we offer diners the chance to try a variety of oysters from around the Pacific Northwest. Below, we’ve highlighted some of the PNW oysters you can sample from our menu:

Totten Inlet Oysters

Totten Inlet Oysters are a staple of the Pacific Northwest. The beach cultured oysters are raised in rocky areas. Their rugged life, fighting the tides on rough beaches, leads to tough shells and a hearty taste. Diners can look forward to delicious melon and seaweed flavors.

Fanny Bay Oysters

Fanny Bay Oysters come to us from our neighbors to the north. The oysters were one of the first Vancouver, B.C. varieties to become widely available, and as such, have become the oysters to taste from the area. Expect a smooth start, with a strong cucumber finish.

Royal Miyagi Oysters

Royal Miyagi Oysters are raised on a suspension line near Vancouver, B.C. Before the final harvest, they’re moved to the beach to be ‘toughened up,’ leading to stronger shells and firmer meats. They have a smooth, textured inside, with a kiwi-like finish.

Barron Point Oysters

Barron Point Oysters are grown in the Little Skookum Inlet in South Puget Sound. The oysters are first raised in mesh bags by the nutrient-rich waters, before they’re moved to the beach. The fresh water flowing around the inlet makes them plump and tender, with a sweet, briny flavor and a musky finish.

Kumamoto Oysters

Whether you’re a mollusk apprentice or an oyster expert, you’ll likely enjoy the Kumamoto Oysters. This deep-cupped variety is perfect on the half-shell. Diners will enjoy a mild briny taste, with a sweet honeydew finish.

Shigoku Oysters

Grown in our own Samish Bay, Shigoku Oysters are hung out on a line in the tide and tumbled twice a day as it raises and lowers. The result is a small, dense inside — bursting with cucumber and salt flavors.

Kusshi Oysters

Japanese for “precious,” Kusshi Oysters are aggressively tumbled their entire lives, resulting in a smooth, deep shell. The petite oysters are plump with a clean, delicate flavor.

Snow Creek

Snow Creek oysters are grown deep in the waters of Discovery Bay. Their unhurried life leads to soft shells and clean, tender meat. Snow creek oysters offer a mix of sweet and salty flavors, beginning with a pleasant taste and ending on a briny note.

Penn Cove Select Oysters

Penn Cove Select Oysters are quintessentially Pacific Northwest. They’re well known for their frilled shells and are considered one of the most beautiful oysters the area has to offer. Beach raised in Samish Bay, then grown to maturity in the waters of Penn Cove, the oysters have a crisp, briny flavor with a fresh aftertaste.

 

These are just some of the wide variety of Pacific Northwest oysters we offer! Make a reservation today and get to tasting — (360) 766-6185.

This March: Small Plate Crab Dishes!

small plate crab dishes

This month, it’s alright to feel crabby! That’s because the Oyster Bar on Chuckanut Drive is offering a number of delicious small plate crab dishes throughout March and April. (Not available Easter weekend) Our chefs have whipped up a number of mouth-watering crab dishes for you to enjoy. Perhaps you’d like to try the Snow Crab Lasagna? Or maybe a Petite King Crab Salad is more your taste? Or you could always sit by our fireplace and warm yourself up with the Dungeness and Whiskey Soup.

Here’s everything the Oyster Bar on Chuckanut Drive has prepared for you crab-wise.

For information on pricing, please visit our menu.

 

Snow Crab Lasagna
Lemon dill pasta, portabella mushrooms, heirloom tomatoes, basil, roasted red pepper and star anise coulis and basil oil.

Snow Crab Lasagna

 

Dungeness and Whiskey Soup
With crab crackers and fresh chives.

Dungeness and Whiskey Soup

Petite King Crab Salad
Heirloom tomatoes, avocado, basil, arugula and black truffle vinaigrette.

King Crab Salad The Oyster Bar

King Crab Brulee
Blue oyster mushrooms, shallots, basil, capers, saffron lemon mousseline and grilled brioche.

King Crab Brulee The Oyster Bar

Crab Cocktail
Snow, King and Dungeness crab, spicy gazpacho, avocado mousse and crostini.

Crab Cocktail The Oyster Bar

If you wish, our servers will happily pair any small plate crab dish you order with a selection from our award-winning wine cellar. Each bottle on our list has been personally selected by the owner, so as to cover every major wine-producing region of the world.
We have limited seating in our restaurant, so we recommend you call ahead and make a reservation if the crab plates have your mouth watering!

It’s All About The Oysters

Local Oysters

It’s no secret that the Pacific Northwest is home to some of the best seafood the world has to offer. This undeniable fact is part of the reason that The Oyster Bar‘s proprietors, Guy and Linda Colbert, originally moved to the area. Since taking ownership of the restaurant in the early 1990′s the two have tirelessly sought to provide both top notch preparation of these marine delicacies as well as the most calming atmosphere in which to enjoy them.

Samish Bay

As our name might suggest, The Oyster Bar On Chuckanut Drive offers a variety of fresh, local Oysters. Located past the cliff and just beyond the restaurant is beautiful Samish Bay. If one were to happen upon the bay during high tide, it would appear deceptively deep. To wait just a few hours longer would be to reveal a hidden bounty, dutifully collected by the men and women of Taylor Shellfish Farm.

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Taylor Shellfish Farm

Just below the cliff and directly off of Chuckanut Drive, Taylor Shellfish Farm provides The Oyster Bar with a wide variety of fresh, local shellfish on a daily basis. A trip to their Chuckanut Drive location yields not only spectacular views but the ability to handpick from the live dungeness crab, fresh mussels, and a wide variety of fresh oysters grown and harvested on site. If you’re lucking enough to pass by the area during the right year, and the right time, you’ll even get to see Oyster Creek full of spawning salmon.

Here at the Oyster Bar we are proud to be able to say that our mussels, clams, Samish Bay Oysters and Kumamoto Oysters come directly from Samish Bay. With the help of Taylor Shellfish Farm, we’ve been able to provide the freshest shellfish the Pacific Northwest has to offer.

If you find yourself travelling along Chuckanut Drive this summer, or simply need a break on a trip between Vancouver, B.C. and Seattle, WA, we’d like to recommend these fresh, delicious delicacies. And if you like what you find, you might even try stopping by Taylor Shellfish Farm to pick up a dozen or two from their on site retail shop. After all, it’s just a stone’s throw away.


Make a Reservation

Warm up by our fireplace. Call ahead to reserve your seat at the table! 360-766-6185

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Featured Wine: Domaine Magdalena Cabernet Sauvignon

(Bin #1114 $87) This sophisticated, balanced Washington Red is everything a Cabernet from Red Mountain should be. It’s fine tannins accent the beautiful notes of blackberry, rose petal and earth. Domaine Magdalena is not only beautifully made but also thoughtfully made. The wine undergoes wild yeast fermentation, is unfiltered and is Demeter certified biodynamic. This wine can stand alone but would pair nicely with so many of our dishes including our vegetarian and wild game options.

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For Your Favorite Foodies

Call Today for Your Reservation!

Call 360.766.6185

+ Closing times may vary seasonally so please call for a reservation if wishing to dine after 8pm.

+ It is our policy not to seat parties with children under 9 years of age unless our downstairs dining room is unoccupied.