Saturday 24 February 2018

The world can be your oyster - but maybe not after 10 pints of porter

"As I drank the cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans." - Ernest Hemingway, 'A Moveable Feast'. Photo: Getty

John Daly

You never forget your first time. And so it proved on my calamitous introduction to the oyster. "Daddy likes to order for everybody, just go along with whatever he picks," directed my freshly minted Southside princess on that make or break introductory dinner out with her parents.

It being September, Daddy ordered oysters for the whole table. Having never before grappled any such intimidating mollusc, it was a case of in for a penny as I gamely tipped the shell to my lips - only to dump a splash of sea water all across my pristine white shirt.

Hoping nobody had spotted my mishap, I quickly grabbed another and repeated the maneouvre - with same tragic result, as I now resembled Leo DiCaprio in the final scene of 'Titanic'. At that point, the kindly waiter pointed discretely to the tiny fork, murmuring in my ear: "It helps if you detach them, sir."

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