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Recommendations for fishmonger in Brooklyn or Manhattan

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Hi everyone, Happy New Year! Hope you all make delicious food in 2013 :-)

I live in Windsor Terrace in Brooklyn (right next door to Park Slope). I've been buying all (or most) of my meat at Fleischer's on 7th ave. It's all organic, grass fed, and local. For produce I've been mainly going to Union Market, or to the farmer's markets when I can, or to Fairway in Red Hook (which is currently closed for renovations due to the hurricane).

What I don't have is a good fish market. I know there are two on 7th ave in Park Slope, but I haven't shopped there yet and would love your opinion on freshness if you've been there? I know that many people also recommend the Chinese markets down in Sunset Park or in Chinatown. What are your opinions on these? Every time I've walked past the fish markets on Canal Street I found them to smell incredibly fish, which I thought is a bad sign.

I definitely value quality and sustainability over cheap prices, but if you trust the Chinese markets I'd love to know. I feel like I may be potentially missing out on a good thing.

I guess now that I found Fleischer's, I feel like I have "my butcher". I would love to have "my fishmonger" as well...

Thanks for your input!

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  1. I usually go to the seafood market on 7th ave between 3rd and 4th street. There's also one on the corner just north of 3rd street. I suppose they're probably of similar quality, but one day I walked into the "northern" of the two and the quality of the fish looked suspect, even though it was more crowded.

    I feel like Fish Tales, on Court Street is probably the most sustainable, organic, Green, etc. but it's also rather expensive. And at this point it's significantly further for me than the 7th ave markets (walking distance).

    Fleischer's is on 5th Ave, unless they have a second location.

    4 Replies
    1. re: egit

      Cool thanks, I'll check out Fish Tales (never heard of it). Court Street is a little out of the way, but it's better than nothing :-)

      And you're absolutely right that Fleischer's is on 5th ave, not 7th. That was my mistake. It's right across the street from another of my favorite spots- Bierkraft!

      1. re: TBusidan

        I second Fish Tales. I live in Park Slope, and while it's not around the corner and can get pricey, it's worth the trip for something nice. It also gives me a chance to pop into Staubitz for meats or one of the Italian bakeries on Court Street. ; )

        I also go to the seafood market on 7th Ave between 3rd & 4th. And when I just want a simple piece of salmon, I'll see if the selection at Union Market looks good. (The South Slope branch has a pretty small meat and fish counter, and I think the meat choices there are better than the fish choices, for when I don't feel like going to Fleischer's/paying Fleischer's prices.)

        1. re: jennitrixie

          A third for Fish Tales. I live in Park Slope, but I don't like either fish market there. Fish Tales is pretty reliable.

          But the farmers market at Grand Army on Saturdays has an amazing fish place (I think it's called Blue Moon). They have the best fish in city. Everything I have ever bought from them was great--except for the oysters which were so big, we couldn't get them open!

          1. re: ian_pink

            Fairway has some good fish from local fisherman, at good prices - porgies, for example a great and reasonable fish buy. I think they are at the end of the counter.

            In addition to Blue Moon at GAP market, there is a fish seller at the Sunday Market at 5th Ave and 4th St who sells gutted whole fish as well as filets. I have had really good luck with these folks

    2. I am assuming that the Asian markets in Brooklyn are like the ones in Queens. They are worth checking out. Some are not so good and filthy..some, particularly (but not always) the largest ones, can be excellent. Can't go wrong with live stuff like lobsters, crabs, etc. but try to get an idea of the stores turnover. A tank with a few lonely lobsters usually indicates a slower turnover...if tanks are full, that means the store can reliably sell them all. When it comes to fish, you have to know how to recognize fresh fish. Look at the whole ones...they should have clear eyes and glisten. The heads of the steak fish will be sold separately...if the heads look good, the steaks should be good too. I avoid generic fish fillets in Asian markets. The salmon should be good enough, but it will be generic farmed Canadian or Norwegian. Shrimp will also be mostly generic farmed. So if you do not like this kind of seafood, I wouldn't bother with it.

      1. Prices are STEEP,
        but quality and selection remain good at the Lobster Place in Chelsea Market.