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Nantucket Bay Scallops

Just picked up a pound of these gems from the sea at Whole Foods at $30 lb. I was looking for cooking ideas, but the chowpolice moved my recipe request.

So in keeping with the 'rules' anyone know of any boston restaurants that are offering nantucket scallops on their menu's or as specials. They just came into season. I would love to try some chef preperations.

I tried them seared in butter over angel hair with a drizzle of truffle oil. I also served them with pureed celery root and brussle sprouts and leaves browned in butter and garlic with a drizzle of a Le Creme Chardonney/lemon buerre blanc.

So what restaurants are featuring these morsels of heaven from the sea????

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  1. Locke Ober generally has them in season..lightly broiled in butter,white wine and light bread crumbs.

    Clio usuually has them..more creatively prepared.

    1. Last year my parents were in a quest for these right around Christmas. It was hard to find them on local menus, but we were able to find them at Summer Shack.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Chris VR

        Last year, Barbara Lynch did them in a steel ramekin with lemon, cream, and buttered lemon-ized bread crumbs at B&G Oysters. @#$^@ incredible.

      2. This year Nantucket Scallops didn't open until last night. A lot of people have been subsituting inferior Martha's Vineyard or Cape Bay scallops and calling them Nantuckets. Big difference.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Richard Hurts

          Perhaps authorities could alert whole foods if they are selling what are local but not Nantucket scallops? I am so looking forward to the season. Cafe Bella in randolph usually offers them.

          1. re: Richard Hurts

            We may need to do a tasting comparison to decide whether Cape, Nantucket, or MV scallops are "better"..sort of like the steak discussion..:)

            1. re: 9lives

              Neptune usually has them as a crudo special.

          2. Didn't order them, but we saw them on the menu at Marliave today.

            1. There's an article in WSJ today on Nantucket Bay Scallops. It listed B&G Oysters (Scallop preparation: Served as a special; preparation varies) and Uni Sashimi Bar (Scallop preparation: On the half shell with fruit verjus, wasabi caviar and arugula flowers)

              1. Anyone snag the Nantucket Bay scallops from WH? Any good? Or, alternatively, anyone know another place to get them within Boston?

                Last I was at Savenor's, they had those delicious dry scallops they usually carry, but not Nantucket Bay.

                9 Replies
                1. re: rlove

                  It is outside of Boston, but the Rocky Neck Fish Co. at the East Milton Marketplace has had Nantucket Bay scallops for $28.00/lb. I would call ahead, and they can they can often fill special requests with advance notice

                  Rocky Neck Fish Co.
                  East Milton, ME

                  1. re: rlove

                    Hook's has had them for a few weeks..from somewhere on the Cape..Wellfleet?

                    Friedclam fanatic..I've never heard of anyone making a distinction between Nantucket, MV or Cape..til a post here. I've only heard them referred to as Cape or Nantucket..interchangeable.

                    The WSJ piece reminded me of a gnocchi/scallop dish that I've had at Troquet.

                    1. re: rlove

                      They had a nice supply of perfect Nantuckets at New Deal this morning - $31 per lb and amazing! They said they would have them until February or March as long as they remained available to them.

                      1. re: rlh

                        I picked some up from New Deal this morning as well. Oddly, I had never thought of eating scallops raw until I saw a recent post by StriperGuy. Since reading that I had a delightful scallop sashimi at Sushi Island- they were from Hokkaido. I had a few of the Nantucket Bays raw w/ just a drop or two of lemon, very sweet and pristine tasting. The rest I dressed w/ a little unsalted butter a little lemon and a good EVOO then lightly broiled them. Fantastic!

                        1. re: Food4Thought

                          Because of this thread, I picked up $10 worth($30 a pound) at Capt.Marden's this morning...I have to say, after having them plain, then with a touch of soy (just barely) and wasabi (ditto) I can't understand why anyone would EVER cook them. They were indeed, to use that hackneyed phrase, sweet as sugar. What a lovely flavor they left on the tongue.

                          1. re: galleygirl

                            galleygirl, I'm glad I started a thread that inspired. On my next purchase I will definately inquire with the fishmonger about their scallops and whether they are true nantucket scallops. I believe they are the best due to water temps etc, and due to the fact I adore the Duxbury Oysters at Cafe Bella in Randolph more than any other oyster on the eastern coast, including Wellfleet which is my runner up.

                            I got my scallops last week at Belingham WF and their Island Creek/Duxbury Oysters where wonderful.....but there is something about the Cafe Bella Oysters.......

                      2. re: rlove

                        FYI, the Whole Foods at Symphony does not have Nantucket Bay -- just their usual "sea scallops" that are wet packed.

                        If anyone did pick up Nantuckets at a WH, I'd love to know which one and what they thought.

                        Unfortunately for me, I have a hankering for them and New Deal is closed on Sundays!

                        1. re: rlove

                          I saw them yesterday at the WFM in Hingham, and Friday at the WFM in Wayland....Symphony is one of their teeniest stores, so they probably don't get everything....

                          1. re: galleygirl

                            Thanks for the update.

                            I found them at the River St Whole Foods -- bought the last half pound!

                      3. Although i was born on Cape Cod and spent the first 25 years of my life there, this is the first time I have heard of a difference between Nantucket scallops and the Vineyard or Cape Scallops. Sea scallops, yes, farm-raised asian scallops, yes, but never Nantucket vs the surrounding area. What makes them different? And frankly if you do anything other than fry or broil them with a little butter, can you notice a difference? Can you notice the difference with raw ones? We used to eat about 1/5 of our catch as kids when we were opening them.

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: FriedClamFanatic

                          One of the things i discovered at the Wellfleet oyster festival is that even within small regions/terroir, shellfish differ significantly. I envy anyone who has been able to slurp them up immediately upon harvesting. The best seem to go to wholesalers.

                          1. re: FriedClamFanatic

                            The claim is that of the five eastern species Nantucket's are the sweetest. They are only dredged in Nantucket harbor by a relatively small amount of fisherman in small skiffs. The harbor extends from downtown to Wauwinet and is quite cold which they say makes them the sweetest and plumpest. These scallops are tiny compared to most and never see nitrates. They are also farmed daily so they never spend days on a boat waiting to be processed.
                            Can you notice a difference? I'd say definitely, but like you said only if treated simply. I wouldn't even fry them. But boy are they expensive! Really good scallops can be had for $12-$15 per #, Nantuckets at $31 is in Kobe territory.

                            1. re: T.Clark

                              Thank you for the elucidation. I grew up on the south side of the Cape and we got ours out of a bay where there were no nineteeth century sewer pipes still pumping out illegally and few boats with defective Y valves. It sounds like one of those "caviar" discussions. I worked (as a cook) for a fairly famous family that had $1700 cans of caviar brought in. I'm not sure after 2 scothches, they could tell the difference. If these are to be truly different, as you say, I suspect raw is the only way to eat them, and then, only on the day purchased.

                              And on a side note, growing up, mussels covered the jetties on the Cape; no one would ever go after them. Nowadays, try and find one over an inch long. (of course, in the eighteenth and early nineteenth century, lobster was considered peasant food)

                              1. re: T.Clark

                                The same process is done on MV and a few towns on the Cape...

                                The $12-15/lb scallops are larger and generally come from George's Bank..sea scallops


                                from last season...


                                I prefer them raw..maybe a squirt of lemon or soy. If you cook, be careful not to overcook.

                            2. Troquet usually has them on the menu.

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: eddb

                                I just had them at O Ya. A preparation I tried there almost exactly a year ago, too, and it's right up there with the Hamachi with Banana Pepper Mousse among my favorite dishes of all there.

                                Plump, sweet bay scallops, served sashimi style but whole, tossed with a creamt coconut nilk dressing heavy on line, green chile pepper, and (maybe) lemongrass and (even less maybe) yuzu.

                                It's absolutely beautiful.

                                1. re: wittlejosh

                                  There's a noticeable difference in size between a true Nantucket (40 - 60 ct / lb) and a Vineyard "eraserhead" (60- 90 ct /lb). There's also a significant price difference. There's nothing worse than paying for one thing and getting another, even if it's a span of 20 miles.

                                  The Nantucket also is known to have a sweeter taste.

                                  1. re: Richard Hurts

                                    I am a nantucket island resident, and my wife and i have been opening scallops for several of the top fishermen here for the last few years...there is definitely a huge difference in size, flavor, and overall firmness of the scallops here on nantucket vs. cape/vinyard/long island product. I agree, the best way to enjoy them is right out of the shell while the eye muscle is still contracting...so sweet!!! The price on-island is $12 to $15...anyone want a shipment? ;-) Seriously, good luck finding them after next week...its starting to become an all day journey to catch your limit.

                              2. Does anyone know a vendor that currently has these? I'm located in Waltham but am willing to travel a bit, I tried special ordering through Steamers in Nonantum and they were unable to get any. Thanks.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: cods

                                  Nothing around in Boston today. Too windy.

                                2. Too funny, I read the opening thinking that sounds yummy only to see my name at the end of the OP!

                                  Oh I would love some!

                                  1. I've watched people simply over do this, even my dad, and ruin this pricey treat. Better to be like mom and keep it simple - saute in hot butter with salt, add pepper with you wish.