Oyster-shucking pro from Denham Springs returns home from global competition
LIVINGSTON PARISH - Whether they're served fried, chargrilled, or raw, oysters are a Louisiana classic. And one Denham Springs man has turned the seafood favorite into a passion.
WBRZ has followed Duke Landry's journey to China for his latest oyster-shucking competition. He finished 6th overall in the worldwide Oyster Shuck-Off World Cup, with the top contestants separated by sheer seconds.
Shucking oysters is something Landry has been doing for decades.
"Our oyster shucking started in the late eighties," Landry told WBRZ. "We'd grab a sack and see who could go the fastest."
And he's gotten pretty good at it.
"If I do two minutes, I'm very happy with two minutes. And opening them clean, I can win it with that."
Landry traveled more than 7,000 miles to Beijing to compete in the Oyster Shuck-Off World Cup.
"We'll actually be opening oysters on the Great Wall in Beijing. I mean how many people from Louisiana get to say that?"
It's not the first time shucking has taken Landry around the globe.
"I've been to Ireland five times for the world championship. I've gone to Chicago as a guest shucker for their competition. I've been to Hollywood."
Seafood has always been Landry's livelihood, but the restaurant owner also considers it a hobby.
"It's a challenge. And I've had some where I'm like I won't let you win, and I'll get him open."
Even thirty years after taking home the gold in his first competition, he still practices his approach at prepping for shuck-offs.
Landry and his business partner, Rudy Chandler, own and operate Duke's Seafood and Steakhouse in Denham Springs and Watson.