Oysters Are More Popular Than Ever Right Now. But Why?

Oysters have an extended, fascinating historical past in America, one which was not all the time tied to elite consumption. Netflix’s latest docuseries on the origins of African American delicacies, Excessive on the Hog, highlighted the story of Thomas Downing, a Black abolitionist who popularized oysters, first in New York Metropolis, after which all through the world. Previous to Downing, oyster bars in New York had been primarily basement institutions, frequented by working-class males (the one girls allowed in, it appears, had been prostitutes). Typically owned and operated by Black Individuals, oyster bars weren’t frequented by town’s elites till Downing remodeled the trade together with his personal institution — which was additionally a cease within the Underground Railroad. He died one of many wealthiest males in New York Metropolis, his oysters having traveled to the desk of British royal household, and is credited for having modified culinary historical past, making clear that oysters are match for a queen. 



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