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Good Fish Market for stone crab in Sarasota?

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We're hoping to splurge on a huge pile of stone crab on the deck of our rental unit while we're vactioning. Our week starts October 10. Are they in season then? If so, where's the best place to pick up a few pounds? We're staying on Siesta Key but are willing to drive a bit for the best quality/price. Thanks!

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  1. Best bets are Walt's on the trail near Bee Ridge, and the Captain near the airport

    1. I highly recommend to see the fish vendor at the Saturday morning farmers market in downtown Sarasota. OR,
      Cortez Village has two big very fresh fish markets with very reasonable prices

      1 Reply
      1. re: irwin

        Sorry to poster; season starts next Wednesday, Oct. 15, no cheating. I was loitering/foraging in Cortez Village yesterday at Irwin's markets: Star Fish and A. W. Bell Fish. I had great red grouper at the Star resto on the docks, and bought a slice of tuna tenderloin, and a lb. of huge pink wild gulf shrimp.
        To poster: the Columbia restaurant at St. Armands Circle in Sarasota (which Irwin loathes) will have stone crab on Oct. 15, so you can enjoy it before your vacation ends. Usually an appetizer of 3 large/jumbo claws with mustard sauce runs about $25 on opening day. I'll be there.
        Walter Bell will have stone crab claws boiled (all are) and sized for retail sale at about 4:30 Wednesday afternoon, best price anywhere.

      2. I second the vote for the Saturday Market fishmonger. Great products at good prices. Just South of Beeridge on The Trail, is Walts Fish Market and Restaurant. Good food and good products in an unassuming astmosphere.

        2 Replies
        1. re: KiltedCook

          When I Google for 'stone crab season' it says it starts Oct. 15, the day we leave. Any chance to find it a early or is this a strict requirement?

          1. re: CapeCodGuy

            Albertsons had 2 lb bags of frozen for $9.98 the other day. They are available, but not fresh off the boat.