Saturday, 14 June 2008

Oysters for the queen

Oysters featured widely in pubs, taverns and larger houses, usually on the shell. There is a pub in London’s east end by Liverpool Street Station, Dirty Dicks, which still declares itself as what might have been the oldest of oyster houses, dated 1648, although it has long since lost its sense of history in a series of rather too blatant makeovers. Other restaurants began life as oyster bars and survive. Wiltons, originally in Great Ryder Street, now in Jermyn Street, claims to have first opened in 1742 and supplied Buckingham Palace with oysters for 200 years from George III onwards.