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Oct 25, 2007 08:08 AM

Best source for smoked trout in Toronto?

Where do you find your favourite smoked trout?

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    1. re: abscissa

      There are several other posts on this topic, so do a search.

      Following are a couple of ideas:

      Akiwnzie's smoked lake trout and whitefish from Georgian Bay. At this time of year, it's mostly whitefish. It is very good smoked fish, but can sometimes be a little dry. I get mine at Dufferin Grove farmers market on Thursdays from 3pm to 7pm.

      Milbree Viking on Laird. EXCELLENT smoked trout. Whole fish (sans heads) are available instead of filets. Very smokey, buttery and moist. Great flavour. Not sure if it's farmed or wild

      Milford Bay. Also excellent, in terms of flavour and texture. I get mine from Chapmans at York Mills and Bayview. It's farmed, which I don't like as much, but I make an exception for this stuff.

      1. re: acd123

        I second Milbree-Viking for smoked fish, they have a lot of other neat food items as well.

        133 Laird Dr, Toronto, ON M4G3V5, CA

        1. re: JamieK

          yeah, I also tried their cold smoked salmon, as well as their course liver sausage, and both were excellent.

          1. re: JamieK

            I also recommend milbree-viking!!
            They have really good cold smoked salmon for a reasonable price....
            I tried two different kinds of hot smoked salmon, which were also good... tender and not dry.....

            Here's a link that might interest people looking for cold-smoked salmon:

            A La Cuisine ~

        2. re: abscissa

          Funny this topic should come up as I am just about to smoke a few rainbow trouts ....any tips? or should we move this to home cooking before the CH police catches us?

        3. 3 Suggestions:

          1. Milford Bay does some that seems to make it into most stores, either as pate or whole fish.
          2. Kristapson's do fantastic fish that is much more moist than Milford.
          3. Some native gents from near Wiarton have a booth at the Brickworks on Saturday mornings.

          I also like the idea of doing it yourself, and if you can find a big lake trout, do it gravlax style, and play with the herbs.

          12 Replies
          1. re: Snarf

            The native guy at the Brickwork is Andrew Akiwenzie whose fish I describe above.

            How do you do lake fish like trout gravlax style? I thought that all freshwater fish have to be hot smoked to kill parasites.

            1. re: acd123

              salmon is freshwater is it not? and gravlax and salmon and practically synonymous with each other....

              when i do my own cured salmon i put it in the freezer for a day. the freezing will kill the parasites.

              1. re: pinstripeprincess

                The following excerpt is from a previous post on smoked fish in Ontario. It seemed reasonable to me but it may be way off...:

                Re: hot vs cold smoked fish - When it's fresh-water fish, it must be cooked. i.e. hot smoked. When it comes from the sea, it's OK to cold smoke it. Akiwenzie's (and the one-time Turtle's) is definitely hot smoked, using maple sawdust from the local sawmill.

                Of wild freshwater Trout and Salmon types, only Lake Trout or Whitefish are available on a retail basis. Any Rainbow Trout or any Salmon species are farmed fish - not comparable to wild, but still tasty, either smoked or cooked. Our freshwater fish must reach 145*C to kill off any parasites and bacteria. I smoke my own catches and find that by keeping the temperature at 150*C I can get a result that is, let's say, "tepid-cured." It's a texture bordering on Nova Scotia Lox or Scottish Smoked but not quite. It's certainly not flaky - but we like that too. I have never found anything but cooked retail product.

                1. re: acd123

                  right.. but what does that have to do with gravlax?

                  gravlax is cured fish... cure = salt... no smoke.

                  i'm not surprised that it hot smoking is better but hot smoking nor cold smoking means curing. i imagine then that parasites just can't live below freezing and above 145C.

                  1. re: pinstripeprincess

                    I guess that you're right. I assume then that the cure/brine that the gravlax is cured in acts in the same way as the 145C heat does. And I assume that the freezing would act in the same way.

                  2. re: acd123

                    Sorry I don't agree with this. The method of preservation that is smoking is intended to add enough nitrates/salt to the fish that bacteria can't grow anyway. Smoking isn't only about flavour. I have eaten cold smoked trout a year after it was smoked and lived to tell about it. Though a year is pushing it :)

                    1. re: abscissa

                      Are you sure there are nitrates? Cured fish always has salt, which will not kill all parasites. Smoking will kill them, but nitrates are not added, except in meats.

                    2. re: acd123

                      Here is the previous thread on smoked fish:


                      I wrote the excerpt acd123 cited after some previous research before attempting my first smoking project. All remarks apply to fresh water fish only.

                      The parasites are a serious consideration but I've encountered no problem, nor have my friends or relations to whom I've presented my fish. Nor have the locals who showed me how.

                      Here is what else I found relative to remarks in this thread.

                      Brining or gravlux curing does NOT completely eliminate parasites or bacteria, nor does freezing unless it occurrs at -20* (C or F?) for at least 5 days. So don't even think of gravlux curing a fresh-water fish.

                      Wild fresh-water Trout and Salmon are all seasonal in quality. Pacific Salmon are one-time spawners; All Trout and Atlantic Salmon are multiple spawners. As spawning approaches all these fish consume their bodily resources as they migrate upriver.

                      At this time in late fall, I would definitely avoid these wild fish: Chinook (totally inedible); Lake Trout (oily and flacid); Brown Trout (same) and Speckled Trout (out of season). Whitefish and Rainbow are prime now. Farmed fresh-water Salmon or Trout, however, are genetically altered, and/or their seasonal clocks adjusted to provide a passable product. So, if you're going to the time and trouble of curing and smoking your own fish, pick the best available at the time.

                      1. re: DockPotato

                        Thanks for elaborating.

                        Whitefish and Rainbow are the species that Milbree Viking is currently hot smoking.

                        I have some of their Rainbow in my fridge and it's great.

                        Would a smoked Rainbow trout at either Kristapson's or Milbree Viking be wild or farmed?

                        1. re: acd123

                          All Salmon and Trout except Lake Trout and BC Salmon are gamefish and cannot be fished commercially in Ontario nor most other provinces. It's also an offence to sell a gamefish or accept goods in trade for one. Your Rainbow was farmed - probably from Cape Croker or Manitoulin Island.

                          There is a large Whitefish and Lake Trout commercial fishery on Lakes Huron and Superior. If you find these in shops or stalls they are wild.

                          Is anyone familiar with Winnipeg Goldeye? It's a smoked, Shad-type fish from Saskatchewan waters. I had it only once years ago at the Winnipeg Inn as a cooked item but can't remember whether it was worth remembering.

                          1. re: DockPotato

                            Gamefish may be caught and sold by natives.

                            1. re: DockPotato

                              I found a huge stack of whole smoked Goldeye around this time last year at St. Lawrence Market. I think it was Mike's. It was in the display on the west side of the stall, close to the pizza/pasta shop. They were really good.

                2. Has anyone tried the smoked trout at Kristopsans on Queen East?

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: leslievillian

                    As I said above, yes, and it is better flavour and more moist than Milford Bay.

                    1. re: Snarf

                      I love Kristapson's smoked salmon, but recently, I bought a whole smoked trout from Kristapson's on Yonge--I'm sure it's the same as they sell on Queen. It was (I think) $5.00 for the whole small trout, and it was awesome. I spoke to him about it, and they don't do it themselves, since it's the hot smoke process. I believe he said that they get it from Meaford.

                      1. re: Yongeman

                        Does anyone know if Kristapson's or Milbree-Viking are open on Sundays? I can't seem to find their hours of operation on their websites.

                        1. re: phoenikia

                          I'm fairly certain Kristapson's isn't open on Sunday. If you're caught out, you can get a number of different options from Pusateri's, which is essentially subcontracted to Mike's fish, which is also at the market and owns Pisces.

                          1. re: Snarf

                            Rick from Mike's Fish used to run the fish counter at the Avenue Road Pusateri's location but I think that relationship ended a while back (unless it restarted again). Also, Rick's wife and daughter run Pisces but I don't think there's any corporate relationship between the 2 ventures.