“You have to see the geoduck,” a woman urged her friends at the entrance to Taylor Shellfish Farms Melrose Market store. The geoduck, or giant clam, with a foot or so of muscle protruding from its fist-sized shell, is indeed a Pacific Northwest wonder, but so are all the oysters, clams, mussels, scallops and Dungeness crab resting in chilly tanks of rippling water at this “tideland-to-table seafood experience.” Taylor Shellfish Farms is a 120-year-old family-operated company based in Puget Sound. A steward of some of the purest, nutrient-packed tidelands in the world, the company has long championed clean water and sustainable farming methods, steadily upgrading technology to monitor quality and production. There are retail outlets adjacent to their farms in Bow and Shelton, and the white-tile-and-stainless-steel Seattle store opened as a market only. But city-folks’ demand for fresh-shucked oysters prompted them to add a few round tables and counter stools next to the tanks. So, while some people wheel in coolers to carry home their perishable treasure, others enjoy an oyster sampler, cracked crab or geoduck sashimi on the spot; though oyster stew from the self-serve chowder bar may be the more attractive option on a wet Seattle day.
1521 Melrose Ave.,
Seattle, WA 98122