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Old 01-06-2009, 01:20 PM   #61
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What a ruckus I have stirred up but I am glad I did. I am not surprised that you could not get a restaurant in Chinatown Boston to sell you condiments what I was suggesting was for those in the small towns across the USA to try their local Chinese restaurants. I have made many good friends with these people in my travels and found them to be most helpful and kind and eager to help when someone is asking about their cooking. In Boston, like here in Milwaukee you have a wide selection of fine Asian Grocers to choose from and do not need to bother the cooks at the local restaurants. OK, we who cook may know Oyster Sauce but most people do not and I will bet you will find more ketchup in the American refrigerator than oyster sauce.
Next is what is Oyster sauce. i dug out a bottle I dragged home from the Qing Ping market in Guangzhou. Sorry about the brand but it does have ABC on the label. Ingredients in English as printed are: water, sugar, oysters, salt, flavor enhancer, corn starch, wheat flour, color. My Asian Market brand is called Panda Brand and has almost the same and could be the same ingredients but uses "Oyster extractive", which they label as oysters, water, and salt. I can detect no difference in taste. I am waiting for someone to open a discussion on honey so I can use my Qing Ping market honey as an example.

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Old 01-06-2009, 01:22 PM   #62
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Old 01-06-2009, 01:30 PM   #63
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And since all the OP asked was where oyster sauce could be obtained (instead of all this hoopla), unless it was already mentioned & I missed it, very nearly every exotic ingredient you could possibly need or want is simply available on line!! Just do a web search for what you're looking for & you'll come across some very very interesting companies. Even if you don't buy from them, it makes for very interesting reading. And unless you're purchasing something perishable, shipping is very reasonable - especially if you purchase a couple of things.
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Old 01-06-2009, 01:35 PM   #64
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Originally Posted by Chaplain Kent View Post
what I was suggesting was for those in the small towns across the USA to try their local Chinese restaurants.
OK for the heck of it I did call my local place where they know me quite well (I live about an hour West of Boston in a very small quaint MA town). They guy thought I was crazy. He told me he can't do that. He buys his food in bulk and has no way of selling the stuff even if he wanted to. He suggested I go to the supermarket because they sell it. I did eventually tell him why I was asking and he wanted me to tell the people here that from his point of view it is not cool to ask restaurants to do that unless they advertise that they do. the cash registers are not set up for that, the employees who work there can not make decisions like that and have to go to the boss to ask which eats up their time, they have no way of tracking that sort of sale, etc. These are his thoughts, not mine.
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Old 01-06-2009, 01:49 PM   #65
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Makes perfect sense GB -- I would guess there would/could be liability issues as well.
He's covered on the food he serves... probably not on ingredients he sells out the door.
Like you said...He's not in that business!
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Old 01-06-2009, 01:59 PM   #66
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I wonder how the chicken and brocolli came out?
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Old 01-06-2009, 05:55 PM   #67
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I'm kinda wondering the same thing here, Jeekinz!

As for what you guys are talking about concerning big box stores and especially Safeway.. we saw that here as well. I don't think they were trying to be devious, just trying to do what all business do and that is increase profit margins.
I know I wouldn't want to run a business that showed little profit for lots and lots of time invested.
As for whether or not it is a good idea, well that is up to the consumer. If it doesn't work well for them because the consumer rejects it then they will stop, if it does they will continue. The reason so many of these chain stores vary so much from one part of the country to the next is because of this approach. They try something out, and where it succeeds they keep it and where it fails they switch back. Over time and many times doing this the stores loose some of the uniformity and become more unique to the community they are serving. Makes business sense to me, I would want my stores to succeed where ever I put them, so tailoring them to have the most appeal to the community I am going into is smart.
In our case, Safeway bought out Dominick's here. Within six months Safeway products dominated the shelves and it was actually pretty hard to find brand names. Two years later, we can't find a Dominick's anywhere in our area, all four stores are closed. It is a simple matter of the consumer having rejected what they were doing and going elsewhere.
Unfortunately for them, it was a costly mistake as here in Chicago the grocery business is fierce, and often times once you loose your client base you don't recover. Someone else has already stepped in and you just aren't going to get them back.
My personal approach is to shop where I can get the most value for my dollar. That doesn't necessarily mean cheapest, but more like highest quality and best service balanced with value.
I don't need to support only mom and pop stores, nor do I need to support only big box stores. I just want to keep em both in business so they have to keep competing with each other, that is where the consumer benefits the most ;)
I have been in areas where the mom and pops won, and man is it expensive to do business with them there. I have also been in areas where the big boxes won and there is no other competition, and it stinks too.
Competition is the key folks!!

PS mine is Panda Brand Oyster Flavored Sauce... didn't even think about it before now! See, I just knew there was something on topic in here somewhere!!!
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Old 01-06-2009, 06:03 PM   #68
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That's it...from now on, I'm just gonna squeeze my own oysters...ummmmm, did that come out right?
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Old 01-06-2009, 06:05 PM   #69
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Originally Posted by gadzooks View Post
That's it...from now on, I'm just gonna squeeze my own oysters...ummmmm, did that come out right?

ohh the imagery on that one!!

How do you know you squeezed the oyster properly?? Well, did it smile and light up a cigarette after wards??

Ok, am I gonna get in trouble for that one??
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Old 01-06-2009, 06:30 PM   #70
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I am not adding to the flames, but I can get fresh oysters here, how would I turn them into oyster sauce? Just saying. This is a real question.


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