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Dec 12, 2011 05:33 PM

Fish bones for making stock in Oakland - Berkeley area (or anywhere in the East Bay, for that matter)

Greetings, everyone. I'd like to find some good (white) fish bones for making stock. Frozen is okay. Are there any fish mongers or seafood counters within larger establishments that regularly make them available? Chinatown and big grocery stores of any kind are all okay with me. I just need to find some fish bones, soon. Thanks so much. ;o)

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  1. I once got some at Monterey Fish in Berkeley.

    1 Reply
    1. re: TopoTail

      I've gotten them there, too. Sometimes they don't have them. Their fish stock that they sell is actually pretty good.

    2. Might try Tokyo Fish Market in Albany/Berkeley.

      1. fish carcasses are often found at many of the oaktown chinatown fish mongers. you might not be able to get the exact type of bones you prefer, though, depending on what you mean by (white) fish.

        1. Berkeley Bowl West has them. They're frozen, but they turn over quickly and there isn't much freezer damage.

          10 Replies
          1. re: ernie in berkeley

            How much are they asking for those bones? Or are they free?

            1. re: gordon wing

              I think they're .99/lb. They don't have white fish as often as they have salmon heads and bones (what do folks make with these?). So I like to shop BBE in the early afternoon when they're filleting the whole fish and ask for fish frames then. They prefer to focus on selling the fillets in the evenings when people are shopping for dinner.

                1. re: ernie in berkeley

                  Do you use it when whitefish stock is called for, or? I always thought it would make an oilier fish stock somehow, which might not be appropriate for general use.

                  1. re: rubadubgdub

                    It has a more definite flavor. It depends your use.

                    1. re: rubadubgdub

                      Not oily in the sense that say, mackerel is oily, more like a richness, depth of flavor. I use it in chowders, risottos and quick-soups (freeze individual portions of the stock, thaw and make soup with whatever else you have around).

                      Since this is several posts deep and nobody's looking, let me reveal a great Berkeley Bowl secret: chowder scraps. When they carve those elegant filets, they cut up what's left over and sell it very cheaply, $4.99 a pound. They don't always have them, though, but it's a treat when they do. Look for a small container of fish cubes, and ask them not to include the escolar if you're sensitive.

                      1. re: ernie in berkeley

                        Very useful to know about the salmon, I'll try it some time. I have bought the chowder scraps before and they were good for that use. I think I paid even less than $4.99 because I fed some to the cat. They also sell fish just for cat fud, aka the bloodline of the tuna (.99/lb but sometimes .50/lb). It's a great occasional treat for them.

                        1. re: ernie in berkeley

                          Escolar is good, but in small quantities. I think almost anyone is sensitive to the particular waxy escolar fat, and you should limit yourself to a couple of ounces at the most, or else you will have the unpleasantness of oily discharge that will surely ruin where you're sitting.

                          1. re: tpc

                            Boy, I'm learning a lot on this thread. I actually love olive oil poached escolar and haven't had any issues so far, and I'm pretty sure I've eaten more than a couple of ounces in one sitting (at a restaurant). I'll have to look into it!.

                            1. re: tpc

                              IMHO Escobar is one of the most delicate and yummy tasting of fish.
                              Maybe I'm just lucky, but I cook it at home every so often, and no one at the table has had a problem afterwards.