What are Clams – Palourde?

Clams – Palourde are also known as Carpet Shell Clams. Clams are molluscs and are cultivated on the South Coast of the UK, in the North East Atlantic. Clams are available all year round but are at their best in the colder months. Palourdes are considered the best in terms of variety of clam and therefore command a higher price point than other clams. Alternative species to clams would be Cockles or Mussels. Clams offer a real taste of the sea with their fresh, salty aroma.

The flesh of Palourde Clams can seem slimy at first but soon reveal a chewiness and salty taste with softer meat at the back of the shell. The flavour of Parlourdes is comparable with the sweetness of Lobster or Scallop. Other types of Clam are available.

Latin Name

Ruditapes decussatus / Tapes Philippinarum


The best availability for clams tends to be from March – April and September to December.


Alternatives to Palourdes would be Razor Clams.

Popular Clams – Palourde questions

How to store live Palourdes / Clams?

On arrival, rinse the shellfish in cold water and allow to drain. Do not store shellfish in tap water as they will die. Once drained, transfer to preferably a metal or glass container as this will be colder than a plastic container, place in the fridge and cover with a suitable, damp covering, to stop the shellfish drying out. Shellfish live in the sea – they do not live in a fridge so the more they are looked after, the better they will keep!