Eamon Clark is one of the most accomplished Oyster openers in Canada and the World, and he’s not done yet. Currently employed as a Front of House Manager and Purchasing Manager at Rodney’s Oyster House. He is a member of the Clark family, son of Rodney Clark (the restaurant’s namesake), owners and operators of the longest standing Oyster House in Canada as it heads into it’s 30th year of operation. Eamon has always been drawn to the family business, following his father around on Oyster deliveries throughout Toronto from as young as he can remember.
Officially employed at Rodney’s Oyster House for over 15 years, unofficially since he was 3 years of age. He first picked up an Oyster knife at 6 years old and hasn’t stopped. He is highly competitive, a true perfectionist at his craft and passionate in Oyster culture. Personally he opens over 1500 Oysters a night and is responsible for the training and mentorship of all Oyster openers at Rodney’s Oyster House, which produces some of the top Oyster openers in the Country and the World. For the last 2 years he has been the head of the Ontario Oyster opening competition, responsible for the organization and execution of the annual contest, which attracts over 40 top contestants from around Canada, attended by over 1800 spectators.
EAMON’S COMPETITION RECORD:
- Current Canadian Oyster Opening Champion
- 7 x Canadian Oyster Opening Champion in 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015
- Canadian Record Holder for the Fastest Adjusted time to open 18 Oysters at 1:37 seconds
- 6 x Ontario Oyster Opening Champion
- 2 x Shellfish World Invitational Champion
- 2 x Whistler World Invitational Champion in 2014 and 2012
- 1 x World Oyster Competition Champion in 2014
- 2 x Montreal Oyster Shucking Champion in 2014, 2012
- 1 x Best Presentation of Oysters in the World, 2007
- 2 x 2nd Place Finish in Galway International Oyster Festival
Chad Egeland, Scales Restaurant, Portland ME
Born and raised in Portland ME, Chad, 27, found cooking by accident. He started at age 14 helping his single mother out in the kitchen. It wasn’t until he turned 22 that this became a medium of art for him and realized he needed to learn from a passionate chef. Chef Frank taught him how to properly shuck an oyster in late 2015. He has been shucking ever since and proudly represents Scales Restaurant currently. Chad placed second in last year’s Guinness Shucking Event at RiRa’s.
Ermino “Mino” Magno, O’ Oysters Mobile Oyster Bar, Portland ME
Mino cut his teeth on a shucking knife while growing up in Portland, Me. He has shucked oysters for several well-regarded restaurants in the area and now keeps pace on the shucking side of O’ Oysters Mobile Oyster Bar, a full service, mobile oyster bar.
Jimmy McDonnell, Union Oyster House, Boston, MA
Jimmy McDonnell has been shucking oysters at Union Oyster House in Boston for 24 years. He has shucked over 3 million oysters in his lifetime and holds various titles including winner of Mine Oyster Fest 2013, 2015, 2016, as well as Montpelier Vermont 2015 winner and Fishermen Festival 2013 winner.
Mamaduo Diallou, Union Oyster House, Boston MA
Mamaduo has been shucking oysters at Union Oyster House for 17 years and has shucked over 2 million oysters in his culinary career. He is the winner of this year’s Boston International Seafood Show and holds the title of New Hampshire State Champion in 2013 and 2014.
Jeff Odess, Sous Chef & Shucker, Black Trumpet Bistro, Portsmouth NH
Jeff Odess began working in the Portsmouth restaurant scene in 2011, where he started at Jumpin’ Jays as a linecook. It was here that he shucked his first oyster. Since then he has gone on to work with amazing local chefs such as Matt Louis of Moxy and Evan Mallett of The Black Trumpet, where Jeff currently holds the title of Sous Chef. It is through these experiences that he has learned the importance community and the joy of working with fresh local product. Jeffrey has earned the title of “NH Oyster Shucking Champion” for the past 3 years and most recently came in 7th place the National Oyster Competition in Maryland.
Ryan Kripp, Oyster Shucker, Peabody MA
Ryan started shucking in 2009 at Turner's Seafood in Melrose, MA. He is a three-time winner at Boston's Battle of the Shuckers 2014, 2015, and 2017. He currently teaches math in Peabody, MA.
Jake Gerry, The Shop by Island Creek Oysters, Portland, ME
Jake Gerry aka Oystah Guy JDG, shucks oysters and raps about it. In May, 2010 he started shucking at the infamous J’s Oyster. Seven years in the game and he was ready for a new wave. This past August, Island Creek Oyster’s opened up The Shop on 123 Washington Ave, Portland, ME. The Shop & hip-hop are his lifestyle, and according to Jake, “The Shop carries a vibe you won’t find anywhere else.” October 8, 2017, Jake took home first place at the Guinness Oyster Festival at Ri Ra Shucking Competition.
Charlie Sawyer, Old Port Sea Grill & Oyster Bar, Portland ME
Charlie learned how to shuck oysters in the spring of 2006 when he started working at The Old Port Sea Grill and Raw Bar in Portland Me. Twelve years later he’s still there and still enjoys it very much.
Brendan Parsons, Owner of BP’s Shuck Shack, Portland ME and River Bottom Raw Bar (soon to be The Shuck Station), Damariscotta ME
Brendan Parsons (BP) grew up on the coast of Maine in the quaint village of Damariscotta. During the summers of high school and college he catered weddings and cocktail parties where he polished his oyster shucking skills while manning the raw bar. His vast oyster knowledge comes from many hours working on oyster farms, where his passion for oysters sparked into BP’s Shuck Shack – Maine’s first mobile food cart to serve raw oysters. In 2017 he then opened River Bottom Raw Bar and Damariscotta River Distribution
Adam Lemanski, Oyster Farmer, Dodge Cove Marine Farm, Walpole ME
Adam is from Cumberland Maine. He started shucking oysters at Eventide when they first opened in Portland, then made the switch to farming last year when he joined the crew at Dodge Cove Marine Farm. He’s a Taurus… and “I don’t like sweet potatoes. I like to hike ski and spend time with family.”
James Geoghegan, Shucker, West Robins Oyster Company, Southhampton, NY
After finishing school in Maine I worked at Fishers Island Oyster Farm and professional kitchens in New York City and Atlanta before my current role as “operations” at West Robins Oyster Company in Southampton, New York. I have participated in the past two American National shucking contests
Ralph C Smith II, Owner, Mine Oyster Raw Bar & Gathering Place, Boothbay Harbor ME
Ralph C Smith II is the owner of the Mine Oyster Raw Bar & Gathering Place, The Boat House Bistro, and COD’s Head Fish House & BBQ… all located in beautiful Boothbay Harbor, Maine.
Bill Mook, Owner, Mook Sea Farm, Walpole ME (JUDGE)
Bill owns Mook Sea Farm, an oyster farm on the Damariscotta River founded in 1985. His company raises oysters from egg to market size and sells seed oysters to other East Coast growers.
He is a member of the NECAN steering committee (Northeast Coastal Acidification Network), serves on the steering committee for OA Information Exchange (an initiative by the Federal Interagency Working Group on Ocean Acidification), and was a member of Maine’s Ocean Acidification Commission which issued a report summarizing the state of ocean and coastal acidification science and recommended actions that Maine can take to address the threat posed by acidification to Maine’s marine resources.
Bill is also a founding member of the Shellfish Grower’s Climate Coalition, a partnership between shellfish farms on both coasts and The Nature Conservancy.The Coalition aims to improve the public’s understanding of the impacts of climate change and increase their engagement in climate advocacy.
CHEF DAVID SEIGAL, Executive Chef, Cull & Pistol Oyster Bar, New York City, NY (JUDGE)
Growing up on the South Shore of Long Island, David Seigal always had a deep-rooted appreciation for all things fish, buying fresh flounder, scallops, and cod straight off the boats with his mother. David’s fine dining experience spans almost two decades and comprises some of the top kitchens in NYC including working under acclaimed Chefs, Charlie Palmer, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Gray Kunz, and David Bouley. Professional stages abroad at the three-Michelin star Martin Berasategui and El Raco D’en Freixa in Spain, and Hotel Lenkerhof in Switzerland round out David’s unqiue culinary background. David returned to his roots in 2013 and joined forces with the Lobster Place to open Cull & Pistol Oyster Bar in the heart of New York City. The accessibility to pristine fish that Lobster Place provides and David’s culinary ingenuity benefit the thousands of people who visit Chelsea Market each day. The ever-changing, globally-inspired seafood menu at Cull & Pistol has been recognized each year by the Michelin Guide, as well as local critics and seafood lovers alike.
William P. Gerencer, Buyer/Sales/Trainer, M.F. Foley Company, Boston MA (JUDGE)
Bill has 38 years in the New England Seafood industry with experience as a commercial fisherman, fish and seafood buyer, seafood sales, and corporate training. Concurrent with these activities he has served on the Board of Directors of the Portland Fish Exchange, the NEFMC Groundfish Advisory Panel, Highly Migratory Species Advisory Panel, the Jonah Crap Fishery Improvement Project and the New England Fishery management Council Research Steering Committee.