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Dec 15, 1999 03:03 PM

Keyport NJ -- good fried fish

  • v

The Keyport Fishery (150 W Front St, 732-264-9723) is a fishmarket that sells delicious fried fish at lunchtime. You can order fried flounder, haddock, shrimp or scallops by the pound or on a sandwich platter. I've tried the flounder and scallops -- both were extremely fresh with a fine-textured crispy breading. At first I thought the breading lacked salt but the fluffy homemade tarter sauce complements it well. Sandwiches are served with 2 slices white bread, good coleslaw, and decent crinkle-cut fries.

It's a white building in the marina section next to a bridge -- very-oldfashioned. The giant ornate silver cash register is the highest-tech thing in the place. The employees develop a grudging friendliness with each visit, but don't ask anything stupid like "Can I get this to go?" (It's a good thing you want it to go, cause that's the only way you're gonna get it. Do you see any tables in here?)

Keyport is in Monmouth County near Exit 117 off the Garden State Parkway.

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  1. I spend weekends in Matawan so Keyport is just
    a hop, skip and jump away. How is the fresh
    (uncooked) fish at the Keyport Fishery? Is it
    really, really fresh and do they have a good
    variety to chose from? Also, do they have a live
    lobster/crab tank?

    2 Replies
    1. re: christina z

      I've bought the following fresh fish at Keyport Fishery -- salmon, flounder, clams. All were very fresh except one package of flounder -- but that was probably because I cooked it the day after I bought it. They do not have a big selection of fish. They usually have haddock, sea bass, tuna, oysters. I don't remember seeing lobster or crab. I'll check next time I go.

      Another fish market near Matewan is Dino's in Hazlet on Rt35 just north of Toys R Us. Dino is a nice guy, but the fish is not always the freshest.
      However, Dino owns Temptations, the ice cream parlor next door, and they make good sundaes.

      My other favorite fish markets in northern Monmouth County are Navesink Fishery on Route 36 in Atlantic Highlands. They also have an excellent restaurant. And the Little Silver Fish Market on Markham Place in Little Silver.

      1. re: Val G

        Thanks for the advice. My favorite fish market is called "Something Fishy". It's located
        just at the entrance to Sandy Hook. Unfortunately,
        it's closed for the winter but you must try it when
        it opens in the spring. The fish is always super
        fresh and they have a restaurant section that
        is really good too. Juan Cottrell is the owner and
        chef -- really nice guy and great cook. If you
        call ahead of time he will marinate or dry rub
        any fish steak of filet you like so you can just
        pick it up and cook it as soon as you get home.
        Also nearby in the town of Highlands on Bay Avenue,
        try Lusty Lobster. They are pricier than Something
        Fishy but they also have the absolute freshest seafood
        around. They are open all year long. Great
        selection and everything they have is top quality. Enjoy.