I grew up on the Gulf Coast and now live in New Orleans, where the oysters are generally plentiful and cheap (especially in "R" months). Right now oysters are plump, salty, and typical cost for a dozen on the half shell is around $7-8 and half that on certain week nights.. However, it's not unusual to still find happy hour specials where they're a dime to 25cents each.
Right now I'm planning a trip to San Francisco and notice that the typical price for oysters in the Bay Area is $2-$3/EACH.
My question is to those of you who enjoy these tasty bivalves and have bicoastal experience as well is: Why the big price difference? Are West Coast oysters that large? Better Tasting? Guaranteed to contain 20mm pearls?? What're the differences and/or similarities?