• Charles Pludthura

Destination Dining: The Carpetbag Fried Oyster at Culprit

This combo will be even better in Summer.

You like oysters? OK, read on. We did 15 dishes today on a tour across 3 top-end eateries and as great as each dish was, this is the one I desperately want to taste again (roughly 8 hours later). Riffing on the old school concept of a carpetbag steak (essentially a steak stuffed with oysters), these puppies are a damn site lighter, fresher (it's tempura-battered man, it doesn't count) and can I say this.....way tastier than its namesake. The Culprit crew take freshly shucked Orongo Bay oysters (up there in Russell) which are then fried in tempura batter. At this point, I'm pretty cool with them leaving it right there. That and a wedge of lemon will do me. But we get a couple more layers of flavour added, what with the topping of a cute dollop of horseradish mayo and a thin shaving of cured beef bresaola. Don't know your bresaola from your breasts? I don't blame you. Let me help you out. Bresaola is just air-dried salted meat, normally beef but I've had pork and venison versions of it too before. In this case, it's only a sliver, so it's subtle but it all works. So. Damn. Well. This is maybe my favourite oyster in town, especially paired with Culprit's dark and stormy cocktail slushie. Awesome way to kick off a meal.

Keen on checking this dish out? Go to:

Culprit, Level 1, 12 Wyndham St, Auckland CBD | www.culprit.co.nz

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