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Looking for a seafood market in Central Vermont

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I'm in Waterbury, VT and looking for a good seafood market in the area. I'd be willing to drive up to an hour.

Does anyone have an opinion of Ray's Seafood Market (www.raysseafoodmarket.com) in Essex Junction, VT?

Thanks. Amy

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  1. I hate to say it but Ray's is no better then Price Chopper or any chain grocery store... except for Lobster because as far as I know they are the suppliers for most of the stores up here and they have a couple trucks a week unloading Lobster pots from Maine (I only know this because I live down the street from their Burlington storage space).
    I grew up in RI, right on the bay and my Dad always worked in Seafood Markets and still deals seafood wholesale in Florida, when he came to visit he proclaimed Shaw's on Shelburne road to be a "pretty decent" for a supermarket. I'm assuming that Shaw's down in Berlin would be the same. We used to have a great seafood market up on Dorset Street but they went out of business a few years back, they had the best, freshest fish.... sigh.
    Good luck, maybe it will change soon!

    1 Reply
    1. re: biggirlco

      Thanks for the heads-up about Ray's. My dad was a chef, and he can tell how old the fish is... maybe on his next visit, we'll do a bunch of area supermarket surveys. The Berlin Shaw's is probably my best option in a reasonable distance, and they have a pretty descent international section.
      Thanks again.

    2. Have you tried the Shaw's in Waterbury? No, it's not a market, but you're not really going to find a decent seafood market in central Vermont. I've not been happy with anything in any of the specialty places up in the Burlington area, either. I've been fine with Shaw's in Berlin, and there's a big, relatively new Shaw's just off exit 10, heading towards Stowe. Sometimes I'll do special orders with Shaw's and they're pretty good about working with me.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Morganna

        I usually go to the one in Waterbury, and do Berlin when I am in the area. I hadn't considered special orders. Thanks for the tip.

      2. Have you tried the market behind the Partridge Inn in Stowe?? I honestly don't know where they get their fish from, but the place has gotten rave reviews from everyone I've spoken to and it's always packed (not saying much, but it's worth a shot).

        1 Reply
        1. re: tkln

          I don't think I have ever driven past the Partridge Inn. I will definitely look for that market. Thanks for the tip!

        2. Black River Produce supplies fresh fish daily to chefs and markets throughout VT. We shopped their Proctorsville store regularly from our place in Mt. Holly. Their seafood is superior.. If you phone them, I wonder if they would tell you where in the Waterbury area they deliver.

          http://www.blackriverproduce.com/inde...

          3 Replies
          1. re: Gio

            Thanks. I gave them a call. They are a bit weird about "advertising" where their products are sold. Finally she was able to tell me if there were any locations in a 20 miles radius... Montpelier. I will call around... wouldn't be surprised, if they deliver to the Uncommon Market, mentioned by jimmyveau. Thank you both.

            1. re: travelames

              You're welcome! Too bad you're too far to visit their retail store down the road a bit from Ludlow. It's a fabulous store with lots of gourmet items as well as organic veggies in addition to the great seafood. My friends in VT are contently bemoaning the fact they can't get fresh seafood regularly.

              1. re: travelames

                I get their fish from Mountain Greens in Bristol pretty regularly - it's not a huge selection, but the quality's been good. They usually have farmed Atlantic salmon, tilapia, scallops, and I got sole once.

            2. The Uncommon Market on Elm Street in Montpelier has excellent fresh seafood delivered almost every day.

              3 Replies
              1. re: jimmyveau

                I only shopped there last week for the first time, but I was struck by the freshness of the fish as well. Hardly a big selection, but landlocked beggars can't be choosers.

                1. re: MightyFrog

                  I think I am going to Montpelier ! Thanks everyone... I think I am having seafood this weekend. :-)

                2. re: jimmyveau

                  Thanks very much for this recommendation! I was able to snag some fantastic red snapper and salmon yesterday and it was very fresh indeed. We made a tandoori fish with the snapper last night and I was in heaven. The tandoori marinade was also purchased at The Uncommon Market.

                  Since I drive to Williston at least once a week for work, I will now be making a slight detour to make this lovely little market my fresh fish connection!

                3. Mehuron's Market in Waitsfield, an IGA, has a surprisingly decent seafood counter. The fish is much better than at the small Shaw's located across the street. They get a few deliveries a week from Boston (I think), choose what's fresh or a good deal, and cut to order. I shop there all the time and have never gotten anything that smelled or tasted bad.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Dave S.

                    Yes - Mehuron's does have good seafood considering the location - however - I'd warn that if you are buying filets - expect to spend some time picking out bones anyways (or at least run your hands around on the filets checking for bones [which you should do anytime you get fish - but Mehurons has a pattern in my experience of having bones in the filets]). Everytime I've gotten fish there - except maybe a scant few - I've had to pick out some bones. Notwithstanding that issue - the fish has always been good. Just a heads up. Your experience may vary.

                    Also - the seafood counter is closed on Sunday & Monday - and so they just set aside some packaged filets. As such - I prefer to go Tues, Thurs or Sat as they claim to get deliveries 3 times a week. I reckon they'd get one on Tuesday since thats the first day the counter opens, once on Saturday - preparing for the two days the counter is closed, and then Thursday - as its in between the two.

                    1. re: Jestner

                      Thanks Dave S., Jestner... I do shop at Mehuron's, and like their skinned fillets. I've have to give them a proper try. Thanks for the tips!

                  2. Thanks everyone for the feedback. and here's some feedback from my visits.

                    Stowe Seafood (Route 108) - Philip was working that day - very helpful. I picked up some frozen stuffed clams which were pretty good (especially for frozen) - $1.50 each. Soft shell crabs were available, and he cleaned them up so they were ready for the pan. Their scallops were fresh and delicious. Their deliveries are Tues and Fri.

                    Uncommon Market - I didn't need any fish at the time, but everything in the display looked very fresh. Their major deliveries are also Tues and Fri, and with some smaller deliveries the other days. Ordering something specific can take as little as 1 day.