Last month over 100 industry figures turned out to watch the UK’s finest oyster openers go head to head in the 2012 Tabasco® British Oyster Opening Championship… and the outcome? An afternoon of incredible skill, lots of fun and plenty of Loch Ryan oysters, served with a splash of Tabasco®, all washed down with a crisp chilled glass of Moutard Champagne.
Regular competitor and renowned ‘shucker’ Sam Tamsanguan of Wiltons Restaurant, St James’s, regained the title which he last held in 2005. Sam beat 13 hopefuls from across the UK, opening and perfectly presenting 30 oysters in a speedy 3 minutes 39 seconds. “I knew there was a reason I kept coming back”, he said, “I felt I could win at least one more time before I retire.”
Celebrating 20 years this year, The Tabasco® British Oyster Opening Championship marks the start of the native oyster season and is a popular event, firmly established in the hospitality industry. Yesterday’s anniversary event as always was supported by chefs, restaurateurs and a liberal sprinkling of well known faces.
Brian Turner, celebrity chef and regular MC for the event was delighted with the result: “The Tabasco® British Oyster Opening Championship is always a favourite for spectators and competitors alike, it not only highlights the skills of the oyster openers but also some of the fantastic produce Britain has to offer at this time of year. Yesterday’s event was one of my favourites to date, the atmosphere was electric and it was great to see Sam regain his title. Tabasco® has been organising this event for 20 years and still manages to make it special for everyone that attends.”