Kilpatrick, Kirkpatrick or Philpatrick – whichever name is argued to be correct, we can all agree on one thing: they all sound better with ‘Oysters’ in front of them.
There are a couple of stories making the rounds about how this dish came to be – the most credible being a chef, Ernest Arbogast of the Palm Court at San Francisco's Palace Hotel, named the dish after the hotel manager (from 1894 to 1914), Colonel John C. Kirkpatrick. The least credible (but possibly the one we like the most) is that an Irish fisherman went out to sea one day in his boat and tried to pull an enormous haul of oysters on board. Alas, they were too heavy and the fisherman fell overboard and drowned. The next day, the newspaper headlines read, ‘OYSTERS KILL PATRICK’. Now, if that isn’t a believable story of the origin of a dish, we don’t know what is.
Oysters Kilpatrick (as we prefer to call them, whatever the origin) is as hearty an oyster dish as you’re ever going to get (perhaps if the Irish fisherman had been eating these his whole life, he would have been strong enough to pull the oysters aboard!). A spiced tomato sauce is cooked with pancetta, then mixed with the beautiful plump oysters and spooned back into the half shells. The oysters are topped with breadcrumbs and baked. The result is a wonderfully warming Autumn dish - perfect for warming your cockles in the chilly weather.
Why not try our Oysters Kilpatrick between 17th and 23rd October? We’ll be serving a dish of five with a glass of Randall & Aubin House Champagne for £20.