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Fish Markets

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  • Daniel Jun 7, 2001 01:04 AM
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Where is a good place in the bay area, walnut creek, oakland or berkeley area to purchase fresh fish? I am trying to cook some different types of fish but I am not sure where would go to find a good fish monger.

Thanks for the help.

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  1. My former next door neighbor was the owner of a rather famous French bistro. He knew fish, and shopped in Chinatown. You might check Oakland's Chinatown for a popular fishmarket (where the turnover is short).

    1. j
      Janet A. Zimmerman

      The Monterey Fish Market in Berkeley, although small, has very fresh fish and knowledgeable help, if you want suggestions about different fish and how to cook it. Ranch 99 in the Pacific East mall in Richmond has a huge selection of fresh fish, but in my experience you don't get very personal service, so it's a place to go when you already know what you want.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Janet A. Zimmerman

        If you are being adventuresome you must go to Ranch Market at least to look! Whole, live, butchered, filets,parts and things I didn't know you could eat.Amazing!

      2. Tokyo Fish Market on San Pablo Ave. nr Gilman is a nice family run market with very good fish. Very helpful service. Good source for all things Japanese also.

        4 Replies
        1. re: gordon wing

          Just one warning about Tokyo fish: they have a very limited selection. So if you're looking to explore unfamiliar fish (not salmon or tuna) I might try somewhere else.

          1. re: rachel hope

            I don't agree at all that Tokoyo is "limited". They are a middle-man market for sushi places & amongst us off-the-street folks who hope to happen on "the catch of the day". Their quality is phenomenal and if there is something you are looking for, be sure you know what you are talking about & ask them if they can get it in. More times than not, they already are for others than the main-stream fish shopper off San Pablo.

            1. re: Lucy Gore

              I agree with you that Tokyo Fish has great quality. I just bought a piece of salmon there this weekend for the grill and it was absolutely wonderful. But by comparison to the fishmongers I used to patronize in NYC, Tokyo Fish -- and the other purveyors of fish in the East Bay -- do have a limited selection. There may have been eight, even ten, types of fish on sale at Tokyo on Saturday. Citarella's (a NYC shop) easily had twice that or more on a given day. I have never found an explanation for why there are no East Bay shops (including Monterey Fish) with the selection (or pricing) I found in NYC. As for calling ahead to special order, I've never tried.

              1. re: Rachel Hope

                I'm not a fisherman but I suspect that the varieties of fish are greater or that the waters of the North Atlantic are richer with fish...I always remember hearing about the Great Banks. At Monterey Fish they pride themselves on carrying only the freshest fish...if they have it - it's fresh. They don't carry items just to have them. (Akin to carrying tomatoes all year round) Tokyo Fish probably engages in the same practice....Ranch 99 has a much bigger variety but lots of their fish is frozen but priced very attractively....and some fish freeze quite well.

        2. I like Wing Hing Seafood Market (633 Clement St. between 7th & 8th, San Francisco, 415/668-1666): very fresh and reasonable, has unusual items as well. In the same neighborhood, New May Wah Supermarket (547 Clement, 415/668-2583) also has a large selection.

          In the Sunset, try either 23rd & Irving Market or Sunset Supermarket (2425 Irving St. betw. 25th & 26th, 415/682-3738). Sunset is larger. All are reasonably priced.

          In the Outer Richmond, it looks like Wing Hing has a branch store that might be worth checking out (although I haven't been): New Wing Hing Seafood Market, 2222 Clement St. between 23rd & 24th, 415/668-8986

          Best,
          Deb H.

          1. Bryan's on california in laurel village has the most beautiful fish i've found. it's very upscale and unlike chinatown or clement st. you won't find fish in tanks, but it does come from the fish market every morning and is without exception perfectly fresh. it's where i get all my fish. i was in on mon. to pick up some tuna for nicoise and the counter was packed including mussels, clams,stone crab claws, prawns and at least a dozen types of fish.

            they get really busy after 4 pm and on sat. they're closed on sunday.
            my favorite mongers are joey and albert. they each know tons about fish and will gladly cut to order, scale, clean soft shell crab, crack dungeness, all the things you might need done to save you time in the kitchen.

            their precut filets and steaks tend to run rather large-2 person size, so i often have them cut to order for me.

            they also have a full meat counter (awesome- they age their own), poultry, and a complete gourmet deli. they also have a high end grocery store a few stores up.

            full disclosure: i worked as the head baker and asst chef for about a year when they first opened in the mid 90's but have no affiliation with them now other than fully enjoying everything that comes home from the store.

            1. I live near Clement Street and I have tried all the seafood shops and counters between 2nd and 12th. I like Seafood Center Best. It's between 10th and 11th I think. Nice people. Fresh Product. Great Selection and Prices. I regularly buy Sea Scallops there for $7.99 lb.

              1. In San Francisco, if you don't feel like dealing with the whole Clement Street hassle, Bryan's is the best (great halibut). Whole Foods has very good fish as well.

                Monterey Market in Berkley is quite good, not a huge selection though.