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locally caught fish

burntwater Aug 19, 2012 06:08 PM

Farm to table seems to be the hot catch phrase......

But us Angelenos live on the ocean as well.

So what locally caught fish should I been enjoying right now and where can I find it.

  1. ipsedixit Aug 19, 2012 07:26 PM

    Fisherman's Catch in Oxnard.

    International Marine Products

    Los Angeles Fish Co.

    Fish King

    2 Replies
    1. re: ipsedixit
      perk Aug 20, 2012 02:33 PM

      lovelovelove.....fishermen's catch.
      great place.
      great family.

      1. re: perk
        ns1 Sep 5, 2012 02:25 PM

        Happened to be close enough to Oxnard and checked out Fisherman's Catch based on this very thread. Got their "most popular" item which is the captain's combo, as well as some clam chowder which many Yelpers claim is the best ever.

        The captain's combo is fried shrimp/fish/calamari + fries. The fries and shrimp were excellent. The calamari was good but not mind blowing, and the fish was pretty forgettable. The FnC @ Big Wllie's Grill, for instance, owns this place. The tartar sauce felt like smart and final generic (a step down from kirkland if you know what I mean), the cocktail sauce equally generic.

        The clam chowder was pretty good, but very heavy on veggies. Not necessarily a bad thing, but I would have preferred more clam. I mean I would still go to Porto's for their clam chowder...it's got like 3x as many clams as the version @ Fisherman's Catch.

        They had a bunch of stuff in tanks we didn't feel like right then - live SB prawns @ 25/pound, various local crab from 1.99-3.99/pound. Decent fish selection, only sashimi grade available was tuna. Got some salmon belly for 8.99/pound which we proceeded to turn into salmon belly nuggets.

        Had a few local catches, halibut/shark/swordfish (or something like that). I probably would have had a better experience if I came with more cash - $60 would get you a nice 1.5 pound lobster meal + a pound of SB prawns.

    2. Servorg Aug 19, 2012 07:39 PM



      1. f
        fishyak Aug 19, 2012 10:16 PM

        Hollywood Farmer's market has a stand where much of the catch is fresh from the Santa Barbara area - he also has "sister ships" that fly in catchs from Washington. But the local stuff is really good - REAL white sea bass - local halibut and sand dabs. Has live crabs, occassional local scallops, etc. All been very good quality, truly fresh - not cheap, but IMO worth it.

        1. j
          JudiAU Aug 20, 2012 10:24 AM

          Hollywood Farmer's Market - Sea Fever

          Really excellent salmon, halibut, sea bass, and crabs among others. We get fish there almost every week and the quality has always been impeccable. Price is very fair for the quality. You can easily spend more or less at some of the nicer fisher stores .Prices are about half compared to a place like McCall's, which also has wonderful wild fish.

          My kids gobble up his fish with glee and turn up their nose at most other fish sources.

          7 Replies
          1. re: JudiAU
            FED Aug 21, 2012 02:13 PM

            haven't bought from sea fever, but i'll check it out. i've been buying for many years from J&P West Coast Fish there and at other farmers markets. their prices have gone up over the years, and you have to be somewhat careful ... all the fish is good, but i've seen them selling "wild" salmon during periods when it's doubtful any is available. but i get the best sword and white sea bass ever from them.

            1. re: FED
              JudiAU Aug 27, 2012 09:37 AM

              I have had pretty good fish from them over the years but the service and slow line is miserable.

            2. re: JudiAU
              stever70 Sep 10, 2012 03:38 PM

              Sea Fever is opening their own seafood shop at La Cienega and Melrose in November. Confirmed yesterday! Will be called Santa Barbara Seafood.

              1. re: stever70
                epop Sep 10, 2012 08:39 PM

                Are they way better than Santa Monica Seafood, Stever?

                1. re: epop
                  stever70 Sep 11, 2012 10:22 AM

                  I've only had their stuff at Hollywood Farmer's Market and it's been things you don't typically see at SMS -- live sea urchins, spiny lobsters, Santa Barbara Spot Prawns. At Sea Fever, you're buying from the guy who caught it. I'm sure there will be some overlap, but for those of us in the West Hollywood area, it's a welcome addition and saves us the drive deep into Santa Monica.

                  1. re: stever70
                    epop Sep 11, 2012 05:34 PM

                    the drive into Santa Monica??? There's no quality seafood anymore.

                    Good find, Stever. I hope he can maintain the quality.

                2. re: stever70
                  perk Sep 11, 2012 10:56 AM

                  That's really good news!

              2. e
                ebethsdad Aug 20, 2012 10:29 AM

                If you don't mind driving a bit Pearson's Port, 100 East Coast Highway Newport Beach, CA 92660 (949) 675-6771 has wonderfully fresh local fish. I believe the wife runs the shop and the husband goes out on the boat. There is a kayak rental/school right next to them if you want to make a day of it.

                2 Replies
                1. re: ebethsdad
                  lil mikey Aug 20, 2012 11:45 AM

                  I second Pearson's Port. The fish is caught fresh and service is friendly.

                  1. re: lil mikey
                    FED Aug 21, 2012 02:07 PM

                    i'll third pearson's port. really nice people. their two main catches: spiny lobsters and spot prawns depending on the season -- are reliably excellent. prices are not low, but they're not extortionate either, which tends to be the two choices for fish markets.

                2. b
                  burntwater Aug 20, 2012 02:13 PM

                  Thanks for the info Chow peeps.

                  1. Wayno Aug 20, 2012 04:41 PM

                    So, I assume that, if I'm buying my fish/seafood at Santa Monica Seafood - which is a beautiful space with a great display and variety, and which I only recently discovered - I'm probably paying way more than I need to?

                    11 Replies
                    1. re: Wayno
                      ipsedixit Aug 20, 2012 10:43 PM

                      So, I assume that, if I'm buying my fish/seafood at Santa Monica Seafood - which is a beautiful space with a great display and variety, and which I only recently discovered - I'm probably paying way more than I need to?


                      Lots of opinions here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/600081

                      1. re: ipsedixit
                        Wayno Aug 21, 2012 10:19 AM

                        Wow, that was some parade of commentary that you linked me to about SMS. Most of it was pretty dated, so I wonder if the situation there has improved. I only picked up some crab and shrimp there last weekend, so could not judge the fish. It's just soooo convenient for me, about a 4 minute drive from my house; I hope it's not as bad as some of the negative comments from '09 reflect.

                        1. re: ipsedixit
                          epop Aug 26, 2012 01:55 PM

                          and highly disappointing quality level at SM Seafood, but that's become the norm.

                        2. re: Wayno
                          JudiAU Aug 21, 2012 11:35 AM

                          Eh. I don't know that I would agree with that thread. Frankly, LA has lousy fish that is also expensive most places and SMS is more reliable than most. It isn't as good as it should be frankly and it isn't nearly as good as it was at its old location. But the fish is probably much better quality than you'll buy anywhere around there and good fish costs money. I really think their service and cutting is inferior to what it should be as well.

                          My MIL brought us some halibut a few weeks ago at $40 a pound and I was livid when I opened the package to see the dog's lunch in slices. Now, she should never have accepted those pieces at those prices and they never should have sold it. At least with a place with McCalls you pay top dollar and get top quality and it isn't out of a slasher movie.

                          I know, lukewarm praise. But the competition is worse.

                          1. re: JudiAU
                            Baron Aug 21, 2012 02:32 PM

                            As a fish lover let me dive in. I agree that finding fresh fish in LA is depressing. There's a fish guy at the Culver City farmers market who has the best fish I've been able to find. Also the best shrimp. But I have questions about his scale, so keep an eye on him. Next best source that I've found is Quality Seafood at the Redondo Pier. Fair prices for their fish and a great selection of live shell fish.

                            1. re: JudiAU
                              epop Aug 26, 2012 01:57 PM

                              Exactly, JudiAU. Totally disappointing. And yet the crowds keep going...

                            2. re: Wayno
                              FED Aug 21, 2012 02:09 PM

                              i'm not sure it's as dire as all that. while we might all wish we had fish markets like seattle, the fact is that hte local catch is very limited -- basically mackerel, sardines and squid. anything else has to be flown in. santa monica seafood is a little higher than most of its competitors for most things (and a LOT higher than, say 99 ranch or marukai), but they do tend to have a really good selection of fish in very good shape. which is not to say that i shop at them very often, but i might if they were around the corner.

                              1. re: FED
                                Servorg Aug 21, 2012 02:12 PM

                                We do have some other local fish caught in the waters off of SoCal: http://newportlanding.com/fishcount.htm and, while I might be wrong, I think that they still take swordfish commercially off of our coast.

                                1. re: Servorg
                                  FED Aug 22, 2012 01:20 PM

                                  we do, but fish caught recreationally are usually not available commercially (unless you know somebody who knows somebody!). and there is seasonal albacore and yellowtail (and a heckuva lot of sea urchin from time to time), but those together make up probably 5% of the total commercial catch.

                                  1. re: FED
                                    Servorg Aug 22, 2012 01:29 PM

                                    If you look at the Dory Fleet link I provided above you'll notice that they talk about getting red snapper in for sale (our Red Rock Fish).

                                    1. re: Servorg
                                      SIMIHOUND Sep 6, 2012 06:30 PM

                                      I wanted to toss this in the ring. This group fishes at certain times of the year and brings the catch back to the Ventura Harbor to sell to the public.



                            3. b
                              brewkowski Sep 8, 2012 04:27 PM

                              dry dock fish in fullerton...

                              4 Replies
                              1. re: brewkowski
                                burntwater Sep 10, 2012 09:42 PM

                                Curious to know what the chows regard as locally caught fish.
                                As in how close to home. Where does the fish have to come from to be consider local.

                                Is it the same as locally grown food?

                                It is pretty rare to catch a salmon in LA or SD waters although it does happen but not enough to sustain a market for it. The same goes for Red Snapper there is no locally caught Red Snapper not to be confused with Red Rock fish which is local.

                                Also I see Hamachi on some of the links that have been posted.
                                Most of the sushi grade Hamamchi comes from Japan.

                                The locally caught Yellowtail comes from La Jolla or Mexican waters.
                                These fish are caught in warm water and the fat content is not of the same quality you get from the Japanese caught YT. In the winter it is possible to catch a home guard Yt but like the other local fish there is not enough of them are being caught or targeted to sustain a market place for them.

                                My mom calls this class of fish Buri and not Hamachi making the distinction between the two fish.

                                What are the chow thoughts on this?
                                What is truly locally caught fish?

                                1. re: burntwater
                                  mrgreenbeenz Sep 10, 2012 10:04 PM

                                  When I think of the 'local' fish that I eat it's mostly rock cod (rockfish) from the channel, sand dabs, sb spot prawns and spiny lobster. How 'local' any of that is I don't know. I only very rarely buy from the farmer's market guys who can give me the whole rundown.

                                  The california seafood council - http://ca-seafood.ucdavis.edu/facts/s... - lists halibut, tuna, squid and mackerel as major speciesbut I've never seen those for sale in any of the places I shop.

                                  1. re: burntwater
                                    BobtheBigPig Sep 10, 2012 11:09 PM

                                    These questions have plagued me for years too. As many people have pointed out, LA is sadly lacking in local seafood - our coast was fished out a long time ago. For my own purchases, I go to the Culver CIty market truck guy (agree with Baron about the scale issue, but it is what it is). Never had bad fish from him - but virtually none is local in any sense. My advice to the OP:

                                    1) If time is more important than money, Santa Monica Seafood is OK.
                                    2) If you're willing to travel a bit, there is an EXCELLENT fish market/restaurant on the Newport Beach coast called Bear Flag fish co. I also like Brophy Bros in Santa Barbara. But no truly local fish either place. Closest you might get is tuna, yellowtail from Mexican waters or rockfish (red snapper) from the central coast.
                                    3) If local is REALLY important, get a fishing license (seriously). As FED correctly points out, there is a variety of local fish that are available as recreational catch that can't be sold in the market. This would include lake fish too (striped bass, wild trout). But no guarantees you'll like them.

                                    1. re: BobtheBigPig
                                      burntwater Sep 11, 2012 09:31 PM

                                      When you say our coast was fished out long time ago what particular local fish are you talking about?

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