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Jan 29, 2013 08:21 PM

Fresh Sardines in the San Fernando Valley

Anyone seen fresh sardines in the Valley recently? I found some old threads here, but nothing current.

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  1. I'd guess Seafood City in North hills would have them.

    1. Try the Galleria in Northridge or 99 Ranch in Van Nuys.

      5 Replies
      1. re: ebethsdad

        99 Ranch does not have them. My question is if anyone has actually seen them in person, not places that might have them maybe.

        1. re: fugitiveride

          Even if we saw them there X weeks ago, they may not carry them anymore, or have them the day you go. Your best bet would be to call and ask before you go.

          1. re: boogiebaby

            You might be right, but sometimes it can be difficult to communicate with the people on the phone at these places.

            1. re: fugitiveride

              Lost in translation will likely happen at those places.

              Fresh sardines are highly perishable, and they are indeed elusive. Like you, I have been searching for them with no luck, specially in the confines of SFV. You may have to trek outside of the valley to look for them.

              I have found this old thread and hope it will give you a better perspective on what you can expect in Los Angeles. Good luck.


      2. generally speaking, you have to go to Japanese markets to find fresh sardines. For some reason, I've never seen them at a 99 Ranch, but I almost always see them at Mitsuwa or Marukai.

        1 Reply
        1. re: FED

          Nijiya is always a great source for fresh seafood. I was at the Torrance store yesterday - didn't see sardines but kibinago was looking excellent.

        2. Serious question- Is it safe to buy/eat the sardines out of the live bait in-ocean pens in either Marina del Rey or Oxnard? Has anyone ever done this?

          Not sure I could, but have always thought about it when trying to track down some fresh sardines!

          3 Replies
          1. re: LATrapp

            From the owner of a VERY famous VERY expensive Italian restaurant when I asked where and how he gets his amazing sardines and fresh anchovies:
            "They're very cheap- I just go down to the docks and buy them from the bait shop"
            You'd eat the fish you caught that ate the bait, right?

            1. re: jdwdeville

              Hah- I believe it. And I wouldn't be surprised if that's where some of the other markets listed in this thread purchase them.

            2. re: LATrapp

              My dad and his buddies used to bring home sardines off the boats.

            3. A few times, J&P West Coast Seafood has had them at the Saturday Pasadena farmers' market (albeit not recently). However, they also have a retail shop in Simi Valley. If you don't find anything closer, you could certainly give them a call.