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Oyster: A Gastronomic History


Drew Smith’s Oyster: A Gastronomic History, offers readers a comprehensive view of the oyster, tracing its role in cooking, art, literature, and politics from the dawn of time to the present day. Using the oyster as the central theme, Smith has organized the book around time periods and geographical locations, looking at the oyster’s influence through colorful anecdotes, scientific facts, and a wide array of visuals.

The almighty oyster’s place at the Thanksgiving table is steeped in history. Oysters were brought by the Native Americans to the first inaugural Thanksgiving feast. Until the late 1800’s, Native Americans that lived in Rhode Island enjoyed the large numbers of oysters that the brackish water provided. Some of the tribes only fished out oysters in the warmer months before traveling to a different area to spend the winter season.

By Drew Smith

Abrams Press, 2015, 256 pages, Hardcover