retail at the fulton fish market
does anyone have any experience buying fish in normal quantities @ the fulton market? seems like shellfish is only available by the bushel, and tuna by the loin. if anyone has any experience, or favorite importers/mongers, i'd be much appreciative.
Having spent one morning a week for the last few months hanging out under the FDR doing "research" for a project that may or may not come to fruition, I can say that sadly, you'll have a hard time trying to buying anything less than 10 pounds of anything at the Fulton Market. As you noted, clams, oysters, mussels, etc. come in bushel bags that are only broken up for restaurant and retail accounts. Vendors are already grumbling about how business is falling off, with restaurants buying straight from the fishermen or other non-Fulton purveyors, so they're not in the mood these days to make a token 3 pounds sale just to be nice.
Generally, outsiders are looked upon suspiciously but I have noticed one exception: Sexism is alive and well at the market. The place is still an Old New York Boys' Club so when the occasional woman wanders down later in the market day (say, around 7am) she's generally greeted with a big smile. Usually, she's a college kid taking photographs, but I have noticed a willingness to interact that could probably lead to a few pounds of Mahogany clams.
another one to consider is fairway market 130 th and west side hwy. chinatown is great!! citarella has wonderful selection. fairway smaller selection, but much better prices than citarella. citarella has 2 locals east side and west side. If youfind any info on fulton st market, let us know pls. thx
I don't live in NYC, but if I did I'd do my shopping for seafood in Chinatown. Perhaps some lucky New Yorker will have the name(s) of a purveyor for you. I've always been impressed by the seafood I've seen in many of the shops down there. I've also had success at Citarella on the UES, but the price is much higher than in Chinatown. pat
re: pat hammond
Having done some shopping at Fulton Street during my catering career, I can assure you of two things: first, as noted in previous posts, it's hard to get less than wholesale quantities, e.g., a bushel of shellfish, a loin of tuna, a 10lb. container of filet, and, second, and possibly more critical, you're certain to get the least desireable quality. The good stuff is snapped up early in the morning by wholesale buyers.
There's a real nice fish market on Grand St. just west of Chrytie St. (and another one right across the street) in Chinatown. The one on the south side of the street is particularly helpful to retail customers and the variety is staggering.