Years toiling in the restaurant industry paid off for one Coupeville chef.
Tyler Hansen, who recently moved to Whidbey Island, is the new owner of the Oystercatcher, a cozy little bistro located in downtown Coupeville.
“I was very excited to come back to the Northwest because of the bounty of products here,” Hansen said. He had started working at the Captain Whidbey Inn in July, but decided to make the move to the Oystercatcher when he heard the restaurant was for sale.
Joe Scott and Jamie Sastre purchased the Oystercatcher in 2005 from Susan Vanderbeek. The couple recently decided to sell the restaurant and look for new opportunities in the Southeast.
“I’m ready for another challenge,” Scott said. The couple is moving to Ashville, N.C., where they are considering a business cooking pastries on a wholesale level. He described the city located in the Blue Ridge Mountains as full of vibrant food-oriented people. He added the city provides a balance between his wife’s desire to be in a large city and his desire to be in a more rural setting.
Tyler and his wife, Sara, moved to Whidbey Island in July when he took the job as chef of the Captain Whidbey Inn located on Madrona Way near Coupeville. Sara is a reporter for the Whidbey News Group, which publishes The Whidbey Examiner.
Tyler has 15 years of restaurant experience. He started cooking during high school in Boulder, Colo. He started as a prep cook and worked his way up though the ranks.
By 2009, Hansen was living in Bellingham area and working as a sous chef at the Chuckanut Manor near Bow.
Before he moved to Whidbey, Hansen spent three years cooking as a sous chef at a restaurant in Vail, Colo. Prior to that, he also worked at a resort in Stateline, Nev.
Scott and Sastre served their final meals as owners of the Oystercatcher on Thanksgiving. The Hansens are busy getting paperwork in order and developing a new menu.
Tyler said he hopes to open again New Year’s Eve. Plans for the holiday opening include a prix fixe menu with seatings at 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. Reservations are required.
Once the modest, 10-table restaurant opens, it will serve dinner Thursdays through Sundays starting at 5 p.m.
For more information, go to www.oystercatcherwhidbey.com or call 360-678-0683.