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Aug 18, 2008 11:48 AM

Clams in Philly

I'm a New England native who is dying to make some steamers - steamed softshell clams served with broth and drawn butter. I can't seem to find softshells at local grocery stores though, only cherrystones. Any advice for where I can try in my quest for authentic steamers?

Thanks in advance for any guidance!

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  1. Call Ippolito's at 13th and Dickenson in South Phila.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Bigley9

      I tried there on a suggestions from an earlier post, they didn't have them. Same with Wegman's and Philadelphia Fish and Lobster Co. Maybe I'm just s.o.l. on this one.

      1. re: nckrsz

        Did you try Samuels and Sons directly? They are related, but S&S is the wholesale arm. Pretty much if they are in the area and not brought in by a chain, S&S brings them in (they cooperate with desparate retail folks)
        They have them on their site
        but you might have to have a party....
        Maybe whoever you spoke to at Ippolito's didn't know the term soft shell clam - it isn't common here. I know Ippolitos has had Ipswitch clams

        1. re: nckrsz

          which Wegman's? I've purchased them at the Cherry Hill Wegmans dozens of times. They get them in 3x a week.

      2. If you're right in the city, I can't help. But I think Hadfields on Rte. 202 south of Chadds Ford has them (call first). Also try Hills seafood

        1. I feel your pain. I have never found them around here. There are several mail order companies in Maine that will ship steamers overnight. I have used, but you have to be willing to pay the exhorbitant shipping costs.

          1. oh, and BEWARE! This is not a popular item around here despite most of the Ipswich Clams of NE now come from Maryland! Make sure you soak and inspect them well, soft or hard shell

            1 Reply
            1. re: FriedClamFanatic

              They are very popular toward the central/northern Jersey shore points and Tom's River area where we go. It makes me wonder if you can get them along the way, maybe through Medford?

            2. yeah, we usually don't have those clams in philly, they are definitely a regional thing and there aren't many transplanted new-englanders who have brought demand with them. tis the curse of regional cooking, but also the blessing when you actually get what you missed. maybe otolith could get you some if they were sustainably farmed?