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P.J. Clarke's: Happy Hour Oysters

Discussion in 'Restaurants & Buffets' started by thecarve, May 29, 2013.

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  1. thecarve

    thecarve Misanthrope

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    Hey gang. I'll be heading out to fabulous LV in a few weeks with my pops. We both love to slurp back some bivalves while downing a cold beer or four. So the P.J. Clarke's $1/oyster HH deal has my interest piqued. Sounds like a good idea for a snack/early dinner/late lunch.

    So, how are they? Is it a specific variety or does it vary? A buck a pop sounds pretty darn good for The Strip. So I suppose I'm a bit skeptical. But the restaurant does seem to get pretty good reviews, so I'm hopeful that it's as good of a deal as it sounds.

    What say you?

    Many thanks! :beer:

    (Sorry if this has been covered - I feel like I've seen a thread about it but can't seem to find it. If there's one out there, please point me in the right direction.)
     
    Number 50!
  2. gpenguins67

    gpenguins67 High-Roller

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    go for it. Its well worth the money.... I had it when I was out there last november. We did the oysters and the 2 for $100 meal special (soup or salad, steak, desert and a bottle of wine).
    They have 4 or 5 different oysters there if I remember correctly.... then I think they choose 1 or 2 as the happy hour specials. They were excellent, but it took a while to get them.

    Just be advised, drinks can get pretty pricey... i think they may have happy hour drink specials too but that is only at the bar. I paid something like $14 for a gray goose bloody mary.
     
  3. ah6tyfour

    ah6tyfour High-Roller

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    The happy hour is a great deal!

    The oysters are usually sourced from the Pacific Coast (don't remember the vendor), but I've been a couple times where Fanny Bay oysters (British Columbia) were served instead. I guess those are Pacific Coast as well...but branded, so I didn't expect them to serve those to us. But unless you happen to go on an unusual day, the oysters will always be from the same vendor.

    I don't know enough about oysters to identify the normal ones served, but they're the sweet/briny/clean sort of oysters and not the more "creamy" big-bellied ones or the more brackish/alkaline tasting East Coast oysters.

    They also serve $2 sliders and they're excellent as well.

    Side note: Comme Ca at Cosmopolitan recently started a Happy Hour and I think they have $1.50 oysters. I haven't been before, but if you want a slightly more upscale environment, it might be worth the extra $0.50 per oyster. I don't know if you get a choice of varieties, but Comme Ca does stock at least six varieties of oysters for normal service.
     
  4. vegas4pools

    vegas4pools Low-Roller

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    While entertained with the idea of shucking these puppies down with ice cold beer. And I would probably need a few beers to get me going, I'm still uncertain about oysters!

    What's the culinary fascination behind these little guys? As far as I I understand, you don't chew them right? So why, gulp these briney, salty, bivalves to behind with??? Are they that good?
     
  5. ah6tyfour

    ah6tyfour High-Roller

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    The one way to find out is to try one for yourself!

    I actually do chew my oysters and everyone I know does as well. I've always found it funny that the general thought is that you just slurp the oysters into your stomach. That'd be a waste of an oyster!

    For me, the fascination is that a good oyster tastes amazingly "fresh". They taste like where they came from and that taste will even change with the seasons. While eating 24 oysters in a sitting is great because they taste awesome, it's more fun to eat 24 oysters from 12 different regions/farms. They will all have varying degrees of sweetness, brininess, "fishiness", and texture. Some are more firm, others are more delicate, and some are buttery/creamy.

    In my mind, two things make up a good oyster. First of all, the oyster must be fresh and alive so that the meat is firm, with different parts of the oyster having different degrees of firmness to them. Secondly, the oyster must be well-shucked to keep the oyster intact, ensure the oyster is free from the shell so it's slurpable, and, most importantly, to keep all that briny oyster liquor with the oyster. That liquid is what makes a great oyster on the half shell. That oyster liquor retains some liquid from the body of water the oyster came from and the oyster is equilibrated in it. From the time the oyster is taken from the water until the time the oyster is opened, the liquid is keeping the oyster brined and the oyster is releasing some of its essence into the liquid. The oyster and the oyster liquor complement each other and enhance the overall flavor. It drives me crazy when I see people shucking oysters and dumping the liquor out before plating them. Or worse, the oyster is improperly shucked (and the foot is still attached to the shell), so you slurp the oyster into your mouth and end up just slurping the liquor alone since the oyster is still stuck to the shell. Now you have a sad liquor-less oyster.

    A splash of lemon and maybe a bit of mignonette is all most oysters need. Especially with the sweeter oysters, since the flavor is more delicate and you don't want to just mask the flavor of the oyster with sauce. Things like cocktail sauce or horseradish should be reserved more for the plumper, more creamy ones, that have a much more intense flavor.

    The other fascinating thing is the logistics of what must happen to get that fresh oyster on your table. It has to be "harvested", packaged, flown from wherever, and delivered to the restaurant, where they have around a day to serve them or toss them. Repeated every day of the week with multiple varieties coming in from both sides of the US.

    P.J. Clarke's would be a perfect place to try oysters for the first time. The variety served is a good oyster to start with since they're sweet and briny and lack the fishiness I associate with oysters from the more brackish East Coast.

    If nothing else, isn't it kind of cool to think that the oyster is alive until you chew it to death? :licklips:

    And that is my ode to the oyster.

    I set out to create the longest, most useless post ever...I think I succeeded.
     
  6. ND80

    ND80 Low-Roller

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    Awesome description of eating oysters. Agree completely
     
  7. tubbypants

    tubbypants Tourist

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    I was there in October and they were good, but be careful. I think i over did it and got a little sick. I am not sure they have much on drink specials so ck it out.
     
  8. HoyaHeel

    HoyaHeel Grammar Police & Admin

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    The oyster on happy hour special does rotate - I asked what I was eating when we visited in February but do not remember the response. My husband had a slider, as he does not like oysters. We had beer that was on happy hour special but it wasn't a great price (or great selection) but I enjoyed going for the oysters. And the bar is very pretty.
     
  9. HoyaHeel

    HoyaHeel Grammar Police & Admin

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    And re-reading that post, ah6tyfour, now I really want oysters!!!!
     
  10. smartone

    smartone VIP Whale

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    I dunno dude... seldom does my mouth water while reading posts around here... GOOD JOB!!! :nworthy:
     
  11. thecarve

    thecarve Misanthrope

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    Thanks for all the responses, gang! :beer:

    Glad to hear some positive reviews…looks like this one is going on the itinerary.

    And yeah, ah6tyfour’s post has me seriously craving some oysters right now…wonder if anywhere around here serves them for breakfast?
     
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  12. gotavegasjones

    gotavegasjones VIP Whale

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    ah6tyfour - your post was anything but useless. It was educational post and highly valued by this longtime VMBer. My wife and I had the 2 for $99 special at P.J. Clarke's in April - it was a fine meal. After reading this thread we're gonna give the happy hour oyster fest a shot during our upcoming trip in September.

    later, GVJ
     
  13. kps

    kps High-Roller

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    Will have to check P.J.'s out on the upcoming trip. Last 3 trips we have gone to Todd English's Pub at Aria. From their website:

    Happy Hour Twice a Day!!

    3:00-6:00PM & 10:00PM-Midnight
    ½ Price Pints, ½ Price Wines by the glass,$1 Wings, $2 Oysters*, $3 Sliders (*Oysters are $2 All Day, Everyday)

    Always assumed this was a pretty good deal.
     
  14. thebig0

    thebig0 Tourist

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    Like many, I eat many things, but have never tried the "o", but after that description I'm all over that. Me and Mrs. The Big O are spending eight days at the "B" starting next Sunday.
     
  15. Bettyboop66

    Bettyboop66 Low-Roller

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    We had these last year and they were great. The only thing that seemed a little strange to me was that the oysters weren't served with crackers. When i asked for crakers they brought me a small bag of oyster crackers :confused2:. Not exactly what I was expecting. I know that some people like to slurp the oyster straight from the shell, but I like to have it on a cracker. This won't stop me from going back in November, but it was just a little weird.
     
  16. hammie

    hammie VIP Whale

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    In the East, this is the oyster cracker that would accompany your order, just smear the cracker with horseradish and enjoy.

    I am a little late to the game, had my first oyster about four years ago, but I am making up for lost time. I try and find "buck a shuck" specials, a dozen or so oysters and a couple of craft brews like Arrogant Bastard, it doesn't get any better.

    My favorites are from Virginia, if shucked properly, the meat is swimming in a pool of brine, you really don't need anything else, skip the cocktail sauce, tabasco, mignonette, lemon. Eat it from the shell, its like kissing the ocean. But, I also like the ones from Cape Cod called Wellfleets, there are some harvested in Long Island called Bluepoints.

    The big grower in Washington State is Taylor Shellfish Farms, they are known for Kumamotos, they also harvest geoduck which is the giant clam in sushi restaurants.
     

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