Open fresh raw oyster clams on ice isolated and ready to eat.
What Is Pearl Meat, And Why Is It So Hard To Come By?
By Julia Mullaney
We know that pearls rank among the most popular gems in the world because they are timeless and each one of them is unique. However, beyond being worn as earrings and necklaces, pearls also create highly sought-after meat known as “pearl meat,” which is extremely hard for restaurateurs to get their hands on.
Pearl meat is the meat that's harvested from a pinctada oyster, a type of oyster found in Australian waters. This muscle meat cannot be picked from the oyster until it’s done forming the pearl, which can take up to 12 years, making it difficult and time-consuming to grow.
The muscle meat of a pinctada oyster is tender, flavorful, and incredibly rare, making it a trifecta in terms of its desirability, and one kilogram, or two pounds, costs around $200. That’s not including the restaurant’s preparation and added costs, so the price of just one oyster’s meat is ridiculously high, such as $32 Australian at Flower Drum in Melbourne.