They come in trays, one or two dozen a pop, freshly plucked from Brisbane Water and shucked for our eating pleasure.
The oysters at the Brisbane Water Oyster Festival are mostly of the locally-grown Sydney Rock variety and so deliciously fresh and plentiful, we’re a bit “shellfish” and devour a whole dozen.
The annual festival, now in its 14th year, sees Ettalong’s waterfront transformed into a shellfish-shucking, oyster-eating frenzy to celebrate the area’s tenacious oyster farmers and the fabulous filter feeders they produce.
Closed off from traffic, the usually quiet waterfront springs to life with more than 100 stalls including “oyster alley” – a buzzing food court offering a seafood extravaganza of oysters, fish’n’chips, prawns, bugs and mussels.
From Memorial Ave to The Esplanade, a thriving stream of people are out and about making the most of the breezy blue-sky Sunday.
So it’s little wonder the seaside hamlet is parked out.
We’re expecting to head home with oysters but don’t realise there will be such a variety of other goods on offer – there’s chic women’s fashion from White Neish, Q Tea’s divine candles that smell of Bora Bora and Apple Chai, plus sun hats, soaps and sweets galore.
All the way from Asia and Africa to Ettalong, there’s also screen printed cushions, gorgeous jewels and Christmas trinkets handmade by victims of human trafficking and sold by a couple of Davistown ladies through their inspirational Made for Good outlet.
Just when we think we can’t fit anything more in our bag, we stumble upon the wineries.
Like some wondrous mirage, some of the best vineyards from the Hunter have magically appeared in the Memorial Ave car park and we get to take home some cellar door faves from Peterson’s Pink Blush to Tamburlaine’s divine organic wine.
The Brisbane Water Oyster Festival is on this Sunday from 9.30am to 4pm.
Coastal Chic Tip: Get in early to get a car park and secure the freshest oysters.