Briny oysters on the half shell are a glorious beginning to any celebratory meal. And oysters are at their delicious best in winter; they spawn in the summer and by winter become sweetest and fattest. Use a small plate and, for an elegant restaurant touch, spread a layer of rock salt on the bottom. The salt evokes the sea and stabilizes the shells.
Cooking Light NOVEMBER 2009
1. Combine the vinegar, shallots, peppercorns, and tarragon; chill. Spoon sauce over oysters.
Wine note: The 2007 Willi Haag Spatlese Brauneberger Juffer Riesling ($15) is spicy and aromatic, perfect with salty oysters. —Gary Vaynerchuck
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