HOME > Chowhound > Los Angeles Area >


suggestions for people trying to learn to like fish, especially salmon?

  • i

I hate to mention the h-word, but everyone and their dog says you're supposed to eat fish for your health.

I once had an amazing Thai salmon dish, wrapped in leaves with curry sauce, and I once dated an amazing cook who made halibut, but other than that, I have never much cared for it. (Well, tuna salad if I put lots of curry and mustard in it, maybe.)

All suggestions appreciated!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. i'd recommend that you try the deep fried whole fish at mariscos chente--mojara fritta (sp?).
    also, they serve a butterflied barbequed whole fish that i love, pescado zarandeado, but if you are a normal person, you will need to find someone to share that with since the smallest size for that dish is a 1 kilo fish.

    1 Reply
    1. re: westsidegal

      Our exact strategy - we plan to try this for a friend who doesn't care for seafood. Another thing going for us is she will eat shrimp depending on how it's prepared. :)

    2. What do you find unappealing in fish? Is it the flavor? Texture?

      What type of foods do you find appealing? Spicy? Heavily seasoned?

      What did you like the most about the Thai salmon and halibut dishes?

      3 Replies
      1. re: raytamsgv

        I guess I don't like "fishy" fish. If it tastes like fish, I usually don't like it.

        I do love spicy food. You can put a curry on pretty much anything and I'll eat it. And the halibut steak was delicious and not fishy at all. I had a bite of swordfish the other night that was divine too. At first I thought I'd try to learn to cook it myself, but for now I think I'll start trying some of these suggestions.

        1. re: iheat

          iheat, I'm not wild about fish for much the same reason. I actually find that raw preparations like sashimi or tuna tartare are the least fishy tasting. I had some of both at Kiriko on Sawtelle recently that was divine.

          11301 W Olympic Blvd Ste 102, Los Angeles, CA 90064

          1. re: iheat

            I personally believe that the most important factor is the freshness of the fish. "Fishy" odors or flavor often result from fish not being fresh. All the seasonings and spices in the world cannot hide the flavor of bad fish.

            There are some fishes that have very strong flavors. I don't like tilapia for that reason--it tastes like mud to me. Salmon also has a strong flavor, but I love it. Other fishes are very mild, such as trout or basa.

            One option would be to eat order fish at any of a number of Cantonese seafood restaurant in the San Gabriel Valley. You can choose a live fish from the tank, and they'll cook it for you. This is a bit more expensive, and you should go with a group. I'd recommend something like a rock cod steamed with ginger and green onion. The fish shouldn't be "fishy" at all because it will be a fresh as possible.

        2. I order the fish fillets in black bean sauce at most Chinese restaurants and find the fish to be most mild and the sauce to be very good. Also fish fillets with ginger and soy. I learned to like fish late in life but it's a matter of going at it. Good hunting or should I say fishing?

          1. You might try some of the fish dishes at Roy's. They have some that are pretty heavily camouflaged/sauced.

            1. Hungry Cat. Mostly seafood, all delicious -- lots of good appetizers to try different things. And if you need to screw up your courage, they have arguably the best cocktails in town. And if you get going and fancy, they have a raw bar. Mmm... sea urchin.

              The Hungry Cat
              1535 Vine St, Los Angeles, CA 90028

              1. not sure what you want to spend, but here's a host of ideas:

                Providence - always great seafood... you could even forewarn what you might be looking for
                Water Grill - wonderful seafood
                Cafe del Rey - another ditto on great seafood
                Yatai - great fish-based tapas
                Amalfi - a simple but well done salmon dish
                Bowery - another simple but good salmon
                Newsroom Cafe - cajun ahi salad; salmon or ahi prepped with sauce of choice
                Ye Olde King's Head - fish 'n' chips
                The Brewery - cajun fish tacos
                Malibu Seafood if you wanna go straight up
                The Talpa - fish tacos
                Tacos Baja Ensenada - fish tacos
                Senor Fish - fish tacos

                there are many others, but that's sort of a start...

                Ye Olde King's Head
                116 Santa Monica Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401

                Water Grill
                544 South Grand, Los Angeles, CA 90071

                The Talpa
                11751 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90064

                Tacos Baja Ensenada
                385 W Whittier Blvd, Montebello, CA 90640

                1 Reply
                1. re: Emme

                  Tacos Baja Ensenada...Mmmmmmmm!

                  Tacos Baja
                  853 E Route 66, Glendora, CA 91740

                2. Intro to Fish in L.A. - I gave this list to my friends from Cleveland, who used to h-word fish...

                  Trucha (wild trout) with quinoa at Rivera in Downtown.

                  Steam-sauteed rockfish from the live tank, Cantonese style, with scallions and ginger, at Sea Harbour in Rosemead.

                  Fish and Chips at a British gastropub, such as the one served at Ye Olde King's Head in Santa Monica.

                  Wild salmon with mango and caviar at Kiriko on Sawtelle - warning: raw (but damn good).

                  If worse comes to worse, the Filet O'Fish at McDonald's (nationwide).

                  Ye Olde King's Head
                  116 Santa Monica Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401

                  11301 W Olympic Blvd Ste 102, Los Angeles, CA 90064

                  Sea Harbour Seafood Restaurant
                  3939 N. Rosemead Blvd., Rosemead, CA 91770, USA

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: J.L.

                    The pescado sudado at Puro Sabor is delicious.

                    Puro Sabor
                    6366 Van Nuys Blvd, Van Nuys, CA 91401

                  2. Thanks everyone! Great suggestions!

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: iheat

                      iheat, I *completely* understand because I'm not a big fish person, either. But I will say that there is a dish that completely changed my mind about salmon, and it's the wild salmon, prepared on a cedar plank at King's Fish House. I usually go to the Long Beach location, and when wild salmon is in season, I truly think it will change your life.

                      King's Fish House
                      100 W Broadway Ste 1000, Long Beach, CA 90802

                    2. We ate a late lunch/early dinner yesterday at Puro Sabor - a Peruvian restaurant. As we were plowing through our seafood dishes that were prepared in several different ways, I was thinking about this post. You might give Peruvian cuisine a try as well. They love their seafood every which way but old. And if you like it spicy, just let them know and you will be well-rewarded. I've included Wiki's page on Peruvian cuisine just so you get a general idea of what this very eclectic cuisine is like:


                      Peruvian restaurants are scattered all over SoCal, so you shouldn't be too far from one. But if I had to name three that are in different parts of LA, I'd say hit Mo-Chica (the 110 & Jefferson), Kotosh at Kamiyama (Lomita) or Puro Sabor (Van Nuys).

                      Kotosh at Kamiyama
                      2408 Lomita Blvd, Lomita, CA 90717

                      Puro Sabor
                      6366 Van Nuys Blvd, Van Nuys, CA 91401

                      3655 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90007

                      1. I love homegirl cafe, and while I've only been there for breakfast, I hear they have salmon tacos that are divine!

                        To make fish at home --

                        For the least fishy taste, get wild coho salmon from trader joes (frozen). Just bake it with butter, dill, salt and pepper and you will be a very happy eater : )

                        The trident brand at Costco is excellent. Get the frozen salmon burgers, fry or grill them up, serve them with dijon mustard mixed with mayo on a whole wheat bun and you will smile.

                        The trident fish sticks are EXCELLENT and we often use them to make fish tracos. Good luck and happy fishing!

                        (Oh and the white roughy, about $4 for a pound at TJ's is great. Marinates well, not fishy at all, yummy.)

                        1. I love seafood, and once you become more acquainted with it you will realize that there is wide variety of options to choose from. If something smells "fishy", then it probably is not fresh, I never get any fishy odor from fresh, uncooked fish.

                          I like the fish at Clancy's in Glendale and at King's Fish House, at the Fish House not only can you get various renditions of fried, broiled or sauteed fish, you can order sushi, which gives you a chance to be introduced to sushi but still have back up cooked dishes available, in case you really don't like the sushi.

                          Ocean Star in Monterey Park famous for dim sum, is also famous for their fish, go there in the evening and you will see waiters bringing live fish in buckets to diners tables for approval before cooking, or see whole uber fresh shell on shrimp, with heads and antennae, all cooked Cantonese style.

                          Ocean Star Seafood Restaurant
                          145 N Atlantic Blvd Ste 201, Monterey Park, CA 91754

                          King's Fish House
                          100 W Broadway Ste 1000, Long Beach, CA 90802

                          King's Fish House
                          1521 W Katella Ave, Orange, CA 92867

                          King's Fish House
                          2530 Tuscany St, Corona, CA 92881

                          The Fish House
                          206 N Rodeo Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

                          Fish House
                          3440 W Slauson Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90043