The smell of clams and seaweed permeates the air, no different than any other day on the shores of Lake Idryl
. But today, cheer and chatter accompany it, the sounds of crackling fires, Lutrines
chirping, and others talking and celebrating, blanketing the northern shores of the lake in a festive aura. Lutrines
have many reasons to celebrate, but no celebration brings this much excitement, except for one. Today, the Clam Shell Festival begins in Otterton
Once a year in the early summer, the Lutrines
begin the task of creating culinary masterpieces on par with those that can be found in the Elven
capitals. Dainty delicacies and platters of heavy dishes, all beautifully displayed on the colorful shells that come from the lake, line tables and counters as the Lutrines
practice their crafts, ready to please those that attend and those that will judge their food.
The Clam Shell Festival of Summer’s Morning is more than just festivities. It is a steep competition that comes with a prize that many of the Lutrines
covet. This three-day festival could give one of them the ability to become the town’s head chef, serving and cooking for the village for the next year. Becoming the village chef is a great honor, and the competition is not taken lightly. But for those not competing, it is a festival of fun and fabulous food.
Little is known about the Clam Shell Festival as the Lutrines
have kept to themselves for most of history. Their history is only known in the instances that they crossed paths with those of Merrick
, but that history is short and somewhat scarce. It is known that the Clam Shell Festival has existed as long as Otterton
has, but was not widely known about until the last fifty or so years when the citizens of Merrick
were invited to partake in the food.
During the three days of the festival, Otterton
is lined with booths and tables, all often covered with food. The small village looks like any city with a street fair, bustling, busy, and with food everywhere. Each participant in the cooking competition will have their own booth to share their creations with those that visit the festival.
Over the course of three days, the competitors will create and serve their best dishes to a panel of judges, most often the elders of the village. The dishes are judged on a variety of criteria, but the judges keep these discussions and decisions very quiet. After judging is completed on the third day, a ceremony is held to honor the winner and to name them as the next village chef.
The festival is open to all who wish to attend, but only Lutrines
are allowed to participate in the cooking competition. Normally, people from Merrick
and other small villages on the northern shore of Lake Idryl
and other travelers attend the festival as the food is exceptional.
Preparation for the festival begins the first week of Summer’s Morning, but the festival does not begin until the beginning of the third week of the month. This allows for ample preparation, as well as the water near the shore of the lake to warm and add to the festivities.