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Denver hot spot serves Virginia Oysters
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DENVER RESTAURANT

Denver hot spot serves Virginia Oysters

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Rappahannock oysters

Oysters at Rappahannock in Richmond Virginia.

The Sunday Travel section in The New York Times includes a “36 Hours” feature that gives vagabonds a quick tour of a getaway. The spotlight recently fell on Denver.

The Times cited the city’s “stunning public places” — more “than one city has a right to,” it concluded. The article recommended Jax Fish House for dinner shortly after a Friday arrival. We have been to Jax and agree.

The eatery occupies an attractive space in LoDo, a revived downtown neighborhood enhanced by Coors Field, home of the Colorado Rockies baseball team. The Times said Jax serves “fresh-off-the-plane East Coast oysters.”

Indeed. Jax specializes in Emersums, a product of Rappahannock River Oysters. According to the Jax menu: “The Emersum Oyster is exclusive to Jax Fish House and is the freshest oyster ‘this side’ of either coast. Rappahannock River Oysters (RRO) has been run by the Croxton family since its inception in 1899. Ryan and Travis Croxton sustainably grow and harvest every Emersum Oyster for us with the certainty that for every oyster that’s grown, dozens of wild oysters are seeded in an improved Chesapeake Bay ecosystem.”

“That kind of certainty means that we don’t just know where the Emersum comes from, we know exactly where it lives,” the menu explains as it praises a “consistently rich and delicious oyster with a size, taste, texture and liquor that you can count on, each and every time.”

The Chesapeake is improving. Stocks of oysters and crabs are on the rise. We doubt Denver gourmets would have encountered the Jax menu 15 years ago. Consider it a small but welcome sign that restoration efforts redound to Virginia’s advantage.

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