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Sep 27, 2010 06:31 PM

smoked fish

Long, long ago, when I was young and lived in the New York City area, we had access to many varieties of smoked fish. I miss them all, terribly....sable, sturgeon, "knubble carp", and others Can anyone tell me where to find such delicacies in the greater Boston area?? Also, is there anywhere to buy herrings out of a barrel, instead of jars, pickled, smoked, or otherwise?

I have just about given up on great corned beef and pastrami, unless one of you kind souls can direct me to those foods of my past, which I crave,(without my having to travel back to New York).


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  1. I'd love to get an answer to this too. I have hunted unsuccessfully for sable, etc., for years in the greater Boston area. Occasionally you run across packaged stuff purporting to be smoked fish, but it's just rubber wrapped in plastic. The Fishmonger in Huron Village used to carry sable, but I don't think they do these days.

    It'll make you feel better to know that I'm on the way to Manhattan as we speak. I'll get myself some smoked fish on Wednesday. It's better that just one of us suffer than both.

    4 Replies
    1. re: FoodDabbler

      You can find many varieties at the Russian markets like Bazaar in Brighton and Brookline or Baza in Newton. I've bought sable et al there.

      I've never seen herring in a barrel in this region.

      30 Tower Road, Newton, MA 02464

      1. re: lergnom

        Bazaar and Baza, yes. Not as good as Russ and Daughter's, or Zabars but darned good.

        30 Tower Road, Newton, MA 02464

        1. re: lergnom

          No, but you can buy herring, loose, at Bazaar...
          I've also gotten some amazing shrinkwrapped herring, out of NY at the new Russian place, Fresh Choice Market at Trolley Mall, or whatever it's called, at Rt.9 in Framingham...

        2. re: FoodDabbler

          Thanks lergnom and StriperGuy for the smoked fish leads. I got my fix (some belly lox and some sable) at Russ and Daughters today, went down the street to Katz's and got some pastrami, then went down Orchard to Laboratorio del Gelato and carried out five pints, including fresh fig.

        3. Best place I've found for smoked fish is Barry's Deli in the Waban area of Newton. Some of the Russian markets, Bazaar or Berezka als have it.

          For CB, I like Michael's Deli in Coolidge Corner and pastrami at Sam LaGrassa's Deli in Downtown Xing..weekdays only. SLG also makes a very good corned beef.

          None of these places compare to Russ & Daughters or Katz's or whatever you think is the best of NY but they're very good.

          Michael's Deli
          256 Harvard St, Brookline, MA 02446

          Barry's Deli
          21 Beale St, Quincy, MA 02170

          2 Replies
          1. re: 9lives

            Ducktrap Farm in mid-coast Maine has a few varieties. They do mail order and a lot of local stores carry some of their stuff. No stable, sturgeon or carp, though.

            Trader Joe's carries their trout, but as much as I like smoked things and salt, the trout got too salty for me a couple of years ago and I stopped buying it. I have liked their smoked oysters and scallops.

            1. re: 9lives

              I second the recommendations for Barry's and Baza. Also, check out the Waban Market next to Barry's, which is a nice Russian market with alot of smoked fish (large whitefish chubs...yum!). Still not as good as Barney Greengrass, etc in NYC....we were fortunate to have breakfast there a couple of weeks ago!! MMMMMMM

              30 Tower Road, Newton, MA 02464

            2. The Butcherie, Harvard St., Brookline, (across the street from Kupel's), has smoked fish, inc. sable and mackerel. Many yrs ago the distributor of kippers stopped distributing to Boston. Sometimes you can find frozen, but it's not the same. The Butcherie might have frozen.

              3 Replies
              1. re: CookieLee

                The Butcherie is also the only place left in the area (as far as I know) where you can buy belly lox, aka salty lox. They make their own. And their sable is excellent.

                As for really good corned beef and pastrami, try MIchael's Deli in Coolidge Corner. They bring both in from NYC and cook them locally. The corned beef in particular is outstanding!

                1. re: BobB

                  Barry's in Waban has belly lox as well. Not sure of their source, but it is pretty yummy. My only beef is that you don't get it as thinly sliced as at Zabar's.....still quality flavor though.

                2. re: CookieLee

                  Actually, you can get kippers at most Whole Foods, Fresh Pond had them just the other day...

                3. I think that you have to look to NYC for the best in smoked fish; I believed that these can be ordered from Zabars or Barney Greengrass and possibly others. Sorry to say that nothing here compares to NY from my limited experience.

                  1. I was just about to log on and post a question about a place to buy smoked Herring (Making Solomon-a-Gundy this weekend) Going to check out Baza and Bazaar this weekend. Thanks.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Matt H

                      you can find smoked herring in the Russian stores- but you need to look at the packaged plastic trays with herring fillets in oil.