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Apr 15, 2010 07:47 PM

New fish market in Tampa?

So I drove by what looks to be a new fish market, in South Tampa no less, called Fish Tails, I think. It's on Himes just off Gandy, around the corner from the Publix in what used to be a Vietnamese market. I am very excited about the prospect of a proper fish market in my neck of the woods, but didn't have time to stop. Anyone have any skinny on it?

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  1. Is it where Java's used to be?

    2 Replies
    1. re: Old E.

      It's in the storefront behind the little Java's building, on Himes.

      1. re: Miss E

        I saw it yesterday. Looked nice, but was closed.

    2. Fish Tails Seafood Market specializes in fresh fish and are open daily except for mondays

      5 Replies
      1. re: shorsey

        Ok. I stopped by here on Sat. . It was a little sparce.... or at least the space was big and seemed like there was a lot of empty space, not that that, that really matters. They did have a nice selection of whole fish. I went for shrimp. I bought some mediums and they were very good. I also bought some smoked fish spread which was good. Not the absolute best I ever had, but above average. Smoked salmon looked very good too.

        The only dissapointing thing was that the shrimp were from La. Why wouldn't you sell local wild shrimp? And why wouldn't you sell local wild shrimp with the heads on, while you were at it? Only makes sense to me.

        1. re: Old E.

          I have been living in New Orleans over the winter and mos of our shrimp is being harvested just south of Naples right now. The Nola area is the biggest consumer and processor of seafood out of the northern gulf so most boats dock here. And most locals are just as disturbed that their LA shrimp is actually from Florida. It is late season, as the season progresses the harvest moves from north gulf to south gulf but it is all the same shrimp. Leaving the head on drastically reduces the life of shrimp, similar to leaving greens on carrots. If they are not to be eaten immediately, or flash frozen, it is better to head them imho. Hope this helps make you a little less disappointed.

          1. re: jerseygadfly

            Not really. I can drive 5-10 more minutes, right across the bridge, and get exactly what I want. This is a little closer, so it would have been more convenient.

            1. re: Old E.

              Hi, Old E.! I'm new to Chow, but grew up in the New Orleans area and now live in Tampa. I've been searching for a reliable source for head-on shrimp and it sounds like maybe you have a place? Could you recommend? MANY thanks!! My husband is missing the bar-b-que shrimp I haven't made in forever.

              1. re: jclaireb

                Its tough to find fresh heads on. I know I.C. Sharks usually has pinks, heads on, but they are frozen. They are very good, and I would probably recommend going this route.
                I have been down to the shrimp docks and they sell them frozen there. Only time I have been able to get them fresh is trading beer for shrimp with the shrimpers about 30 miles off shore. Rough bunch.

                There used to be a guy down in Boca Grande that you could buy them from, but only on certain days.

      2. I also went Saturday and bought shrimp which we boiled in beer and ate Sunday night. We were very impressed with both the freshness and the flavor and definitely will return soon. Didn't try any (although it was offered) but the smoked salmon smelled great! We are excited about having this place so close by.

        1. I finally stopped by yesterday--what took me so long?? Picked up some smoked salmon spread, which is terrific (and a little spicy); and two pieces of smoked amberjack, and I mean *freshly* smoked--the owner pulled my selections right off the smoker in front. When he gave me a taste, I was sold. This fish has such a clean smoke flavor! He didn't smoke it within an inch of its life, it was still moist in the center, but he offered me a choice of how I'd like it cooked, which is why you go to a local place, right? To support a local owner who cares. He's got fresh whole fish, filets, the smoked fish, and he can tell you what came in when and from where. Let's support this guy!

          Fish Tales Seafood Market
          4807 South Himes Avenue
          Tampa, FL 33611
          (813) 831-3474
          Open Tue-Sat 11am-7pm; Sun 12pm-5pm

          4 Replies
          1. re: Miss E

            Most Fresh Head on Shrimp are "Boat Run", sized. If you find uniform sized headless shrimp they are mostly previously frozen, slacked out, (defrosted), and put in the seafood case for sale. Currently in Florida, only Florida Pinks, (Penaeus duorarum), are being harvested commercially. In June through August the big Florida Brown Shrimp will appear fresh in markets. Brown Shrimp being sold now have been frozen.

            1. re: ospreycove

              @ Osprey Cove. Thanks for the info about shrimp.
              I knew one of the owners of Fish Tails. They are out of business. If you liked their fish spread (very tasty stuff), it is Capt. Rusty's Fish Spread. I know it is being sold at several Beef O' Brady's around South Tampa and maybe soon in some supermarkets. Give it a try.

              1. re: G8R Dan

                G8...Thanks for the info on the fish spread!

                1. re: G8R Dan

                  Actually I just heard the other owner is reopening in South Tampa and will be selling all the same great fish, spreads, gumbo's, etc as before. Look out for it. I'm told it will be real soon.

            2. Any updates on head on shrimp in the area? Preferably around S Tampa

              3 Replies
              1. re: the_sneeb

                Not in South Tampa but Bama Seafood is having a shrimp sale Jumbo 19/21 for $4.99 lb or Colossal 10/15 for $ 5.99 lb ,this Friday and Saturday 1 & 2 I have seen it advertised and and am going to check it out . I called and they said they have heads on.

                756 28th Street South
                St. Petersburg, FL 33712
                (727) 327-3474

                1. re: the_sneeb

                  So, I just went to Bama Seafood, the shrimp they have on sale are all heads on. so I bought 3lbs of Colossals for 5.99 lb. Now I need some good shrimp recipes :)

                  1. re: the_sneeb

                    Picked up some frozen Gulf shrimp from IC Sharks, worked out quite well.