Author Archives: MatunuckOBar

Homegrown: Matunuck Oysters

Homegrown: Matunuck Oysters

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Think you know New England shellfish? These gems from Little Rhody are a new reason to savor the oyster.

Perry Raso, owner of Matunuck Oyster Farm, is waist-deep in water, hauling up one of the 10,000 bags lined up in rows along the floor of Potter Pond, a saltwater basin in South Kingstown, on the southern coast of Rhode Island. He pulls out a handful of oysters, each about an inch wide, then returns them to the sack. These youngsters are much too small to be harvested, but with time, they’ll be large and plump, ready to serve at Raso’s restaurant, Matunuck Oyster Bar, just a stone’s throw across the water. They’ll also make their way to restaurants from Boston and Newport to New York and Atlanta. And they’ll be uniquely Matunucks, with their distinct, briny crispness and lightly sweet finish, like a friendly goodbye.

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The World Is His Oyster

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Perry Raso certainly knows how to nurture things. He started eight years ago creating an oyster farming business that today ships shellfish to several states. In the process, he has become an employer and mentor to URI students, a collaborator with URI researchers and alumni, the potential marketer of a unique “vegetable,” and, most recently, the owner of one of the most popular restaurants in southern Rhode Island.

Talk about getting mileage out of his two URI aquaculture degrees.

Raso earned his undergraduate degree in 2002 and received his master’s four years later; he is one alum who has never forgotten his URI roots. Through his businesses and his interest in aquaculture he has forged an alliance with various elements of the University. His approach is quite in keeping with the initiative announced by URI President David M. Dooley, who envisions a partnership role between the University and the state’s small businesses.

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Spotlight on CELS FAVS graduate Perry Raso

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Perry Raso certainly knows how to nurture things. He started eight years ago creating an oyster farming business that today ships shellfish to several states. In the process, he has become an employer and mentor to URI students, a collaborator with URI researchers and alumni, the potential marketer of a unique “vegetable,” and, most recently, the owner of one of the most popular restaurants in southern Rhode Island.

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