Like many oyster varieties, our own oysters take their name from the body of water in which they are grown. The Choptank River is a major tributary of the Chesapeake Bay located on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, a region with a rich history and tradition of oystering.
Choptank Sweets are a robust, meaty oyster with a rich creamy texture, a sweet buttery flavor with a clean crisp finish. The moderate salinity of the Choptank ensures the flavor is not overburdened with saltiness, thus allowing the more subtle and complex natural flavors of the oyster to be detected. A Choptank Sweet is the perfect oyster for any recipe that requires only the highest quality oyster in appearance, texture, and taste.
All Choptank Sweets are grown in floats at the water’s surface so they are free from sand and grit. Just below the surface there is an abundance of algae for the oysters to eat so they are always plump and healthy. Several times during their development they are pulled from their floats and sent through a tumbler that cleans and shapes them. This creates that sought-after deep cupped shape by knocking off barnacles, mussels, and other fowling organisms. Each batch of oysters is power washed before being hand culled for size and appearance. They are then boxed, and placed directly into refrigeration all within yards of the harvest site to ensure maximum freshness.
Choptank Sweets come from non-polluted waters that are regularly monitored by the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) to ensure that they are always safe for consumption. In addition to MDE monitoring, we perform our own weekly water quality tests. We are a HACCP certified seafood shipper and licensed with the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to grow shellfish.
Choptank Sweets are available throughout the year, because they are an aquacultured oyster. Our oysters are not subject to the seasonal harvest restrictions of wild caught oysters. Contrary to popular belief, oysters remain flavorful and can be enjoyed all year long.
During the spring spawning season we have eyed larvae – or “spat” – available for purchase. Please contact us early to get your order in!
Various sizes are available throughout the year for oyster restoration projects or gardening.
Oyster gardeners may also be interested in purchasing our custom made oyster floats.