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May 13, 2010 03:30 PM

Sashimi Grade Diver Scallops - where to buy at a reasonable price?

I need a bunch of diver scallops for a raw preparation, so they need to be super-fresh. I'm trying to avoid paying Dean & Deluca level prices, though. Anyone know a reliable source? Maybe a Chinatown store where they're always sashimi quality? (If one exists)

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  1. I buy mine at the Union Sq greenmarket- either from Pura Vida on Fri (they're also at 97th St greenmarket Fri and 116th St on Sun) or PE and DD on Sat. Both suoer fresh- I often use them in cerviches.I bought some last week for around $15 a pound.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Ann900

      I also buy from PE and DD at the Greenmarket. and sometimes they're gone before I get them home!

      1. re: ChefJune

        I would do the Greenmarket, but I need them for Thursday. Getting them tomorrow... well, they wouldn't be so fresh anymore by eatin' time.

    2. Not such thing as sashimi quality anywhere in chinatown so steer clear!

      7 Replies
      1. re: ammel_99

        You do realize Sashimi/Sushi Quality Fish is frozen....even at Morimoto

        1. re: fourunder

          Not only that, but the term "sashimi grade" is unregulated and therefore meaningless. Anyone can put that on their fish regardless of the quality.

          1. re: panoz

            I had to laugh when I read the request for sashimi grade. That term is totally meaningless! And my guess is that the term "diver scallops" has little meaning as well. I know what it is supposed to mean, but do you really think that there is a guy in a wet suit diving for scallops to supply the local farmer's markets?

            1. re: erica

              Yes, I know there's no legal definition for "Sashimi Grade" - but I think we all know what I meant.

              1. re: sgordon


                I knew exactly what you meant comments were in response to (ammel_99). I would have no problem shopping in Chinatown for fish and sea foods myself.

                1. re: fourunder

                  I just mean all the scallops in chinatown are usually wet scallops and I would not buy for a raw preparation!

        2. re: ammel_99

          A lot of seafood places in Chinatown are exposed directly to the street with lots of flying insects (as opposed to, say, Dean and Deluca where you may see a fly or two here and there but not a lot of them hovering around the seafood/fish station). I would be concerned about eating Chinatown seafood in the raw sate, particularly the ones laying out in open air, right on/near the street. For cooking, they are probably ok but to consume them raw, I would be a little worried. I am sure the price of seafood is cheaper in Chinatown but the saving is probably not worth the risk if you have to pay for medical bills in case you get sick.

        3. sometimes katagiri has them

          1. You could try The Lobster Place in the Chelsea Market or Piscane Seafood on 2nd. Make sure you ask for "Dry" sea scallops (those that are not packed in Sodium Tri-plyphosphate, an additve) and look for ones that are a deep grey, not super white or foamy.

            The Lobster Place
            252 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014

            2 Replies
            1. re: tbear

              I meant to say "dry" as well, yeah. Good idea on TLP - unfortunately their website doesn't have prices listed, but I've got to go by Buon Italia this weekend anyway, so I'll see what they've got. Katagiri & Piscane are a litte out-of-the-way for me to make a special trip for one thing, but if the price is right maybe I'll venture up to Midtown.

              Buon Italia
              75 9th Ave, New York, NY 10011

              224 E 59th St, New York, NY 10022

              1. re: tbear

                Pisacane is on First Avenue and 52nd Street.

                940 1st Ave, New York, NY 10022

              2. Fresh Direct has good ones that I frequently eat raw. I think they are $16lb

                4 Replies
                1. re: MVNYC

                  Citarella has scallops IN THE SHELL. Now you can get more fresh than that... open em up, clean all the disgusting guts, and there you have a scallop as fresh as a clam!

                  1. re: simetrias

                    Pura Vida (at the Greenmarkets) often has scallops in the shell. I have bought them- but since the scallops they sell out of the shell are just as fresh I really don't taste a big difference.

                    1. re: simetrias

                      Did they still have the coral attached? I think I've seen that at Citarella in years past. I bought some scallops from the sea food vendor at the farmer's market at Lincoln Center on Saturday and ate a number of the smaller ones raw while making dinner that night.

                      1. re: MMRuth

                        Yes, some did. And yes, the ones with the coral are definitely fabulous.