Jules Opton-Himmel
Walrus and Carpenter Oysters
Ninigret, R.I.

Rhode Island oysters are considered a delicacy, and not too long ago, they were nearly overfished to the point of extinction. Opton-Himmel’s farm is one of a growing number of local operations that are ensuring the oyster population remains healthy and intact.

ri_postWhy we chose these oysters:

Before founding Walrus and Carpenter, Opton-Himmel worked on a number of shellfish restoration projects as a field biologist. He knows as well as anyone that oysters are a naturally sustainable source of protein, because they filter seawater and replenish their habitats without requiring any external source of food. At Walrus and Carpenter, all harvesting is done by hand, and Opton-Himmel only sells his oysters in state and in New York City around the winter holidays. He refuses to ship overseas or across the country.

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Residents of the littlest state are big on learning about local food:

Opton-Himmel has partnered with local chefs to host summertime dinners by the farm. “When people come down for the dinner, they learn about how aquaculture works,” he says. “We’re actually stewards of the environment.”

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