Congratulations are in order for Jack Blake of Sweet Neck Farm in Edgartown, whose Sweet Petites oysters tied for third place in an oyster tasting competition in Providence, R.I., on Monday evening.
“It was real fun, there were a lot of good oysters out there,” Mr. Blake said after the winners were announced. Mr. Blake’s oysters beat out a bevy of bivalves culled from all over the country.
The tasting Monday was part of the 100th anniversary of the annual meeting of the National Shellfisheries Association. A panel of nine judges — with chefs, oyster experts and seafood buyers among its ranks — sampled 20 varieties of oysters and from them announced their favorites.
Skip Bennett of Island Creeks in Duxbury took top honors. Oysters from Totten Inlet in Taylor, Wash., scooped second place and Mr. Blake tied with Ninigrets from Charlestown, R.I., in third.
Mr. Blake’s oysters were voted number one for their internal appearance and placed second in the best-looking oyster category for their external shell. Also in the competition were the Katama Bay Oysters of Roy Scheffer.
The nine judges were not the only ones partaking in the goods Monday. Chilmark selectman Warren Doty was there with six other Islanders, including Mr. Blake and his wife, Chilmark shellfish propagation officer Isaiah Scheffer and Slow Food Martha’s Vineyard member Roxanne Ackerman.
“I’ve never eaten that many oysters in my life,” Mr. Doty said. “We tasted all 20 entries and Jack’s oysters were top of the line. There are a lot of beautiful oysters coming out of New England, so the competition is very stiff. We’ll be back next year.”