When visiting this neck of the Northwest, it’s customary to partake in our locally grown shellfish. One of the best places on San Juan Island to slurp some Westcott Bay oysters is the Tide Tables, a great outdoor picnic patio space nestled on the bay. During the summer months, at the height of sunshine, they open up the whole lawn area with table seating, umbrellas, and an outdoor kitchen. You’ll find indoor seating and a smaller patio area at The Net Shed, a rustic but elegant space fit for a seafood feast in the off-season.
You’ll find these locally grown Westcott Bay oysters about 20 minutes from our San Juan Island Inn Collection. We always suggest our guests include lunch here, and reservations are necessary for the summer months (they often need to be made more than a month in advance). Springtime isn’t as busy out at the shellfish farm and restaurant, but if you’d prefer an outdoor table, it’s best to book ahead.
First, you’ll need lodging, and our Friday Harbor Inn is one of the best places to stay in the San Juan Islands. Steps from the ferry dock, minutes from San Juan Island restaurants, cafes, and local shops, our 18-unit Inn is the perfect small-scale boutique hotel for your next getaway. Extra perk: we provide scratch-made breakfast each morning, delivered to your suite by one of our friendly innkeepers.
Westcott Bay Oysters: The Perfect Island Lunch
No matter the time of year, Westcott Bay Shellfish Company’s menu is hyper-seasonal, with Westcott Bay oysters at the helm—either freshly shucked with a simple mignonette or barbequed with garlic butter or a spicy version with a local hot sauce. Farm fresh mussels or clams come steamed and simply dressed with ingredients like garlic, white wine, and lemon. Fresh bread arrives from Bakery San Juan with whipped roasted garlic butter. And for the non-seafood eaters? Lovely charcuterie and cheese boards, zesty salads, and grilled cheese sandwiches.
Westcott Bay oysters vary in size and style. You’ll find Olympias, the tiny flavor bombs of the sea, and medium varieties like High Beach Sweets, with a zippy, salty brine. Drink pairings range from bubbly pink wine, whites and reds from the islands and beyond, and local ales from San Juan Brewing. If you’re visiting in the cooler months, be sure to pop by the open kitchen inside the Net Shed and watch the shuckers at work. You’ll see right away the thoughtful care and attention to detail these chefs put into each plate here.
They also offer Westcott Bay oysters to go, but be sure to get a tutorial on how to pop them open yourself.
Westcott Bay Shellfish Co. is a family-run aquaculture farm originating from the 70s. However, it wasn’t until 2013 when a couple from Henry Island bought the property and worked tirelessly to bring the dilapidated farm back to life. Erik and Andrea Anderson are committed to environmental stewardship and supporting the community of the islands. This attitude creates a welcoming atmosphere dedicated to respecting nature while enjoying the bounty available to us.
The farm is open for tours so that you can watch as the crew harvests the Westcott Bay oysters, mussels, and clams. The farm tour includes a behind-the-scenes look at the shellfish farm, a quick shucking lesson, and a light lunch at the Tide Tables picnic space. The tour lasts about two hours, and be sure to make a reservation here first.
Join us at Coho Restaurant for a Beautiful Dinner
As a guest at our San Juan Island Inn Collection, you’ll not only have lovely accommodations, but you’ll be just a minute’s walk from one of the best restaurants on San Juan Island. At Coho Restuarant, our commitment to supporting local farms, using seasonal ingredients like Westcott Bay oysters, and offering attentive and personable service, is unmatched. You’ll want to join us at least once (though our guests often dine multiple times) during your stay.
The Tucker House Inn and Harrison House Suites is the ideal place to call your home away from home on San Juan Island. Our 18-unit Bed and Breakfast offers an array of accommodation styles; from romantic guest rooms for couples or larger two-room suites for groups, you’ll find exactly what you’re looking for on your next island getaway. Start planning your next culinary-focused vacation to San Juan Island and book today!