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Shad Roe

Does anyone know of restaurants in Philly or Delaware county that are currently serving Shad Roe?

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  1. I haven't seen it on a menu yet, but a good place to start checking is the Oyster House.

    1. Isn't that a seasonal thing; I know that here on the Hudson River, there are shad festivals (including roe) only after May 1st

      10 Replies
      1. re: betsydiver

        Looking at the postings last year Oyster House had shad roe on the menu the middle of March. If they are sourcing it from further south you can extend the season from Mid March through at least the end of April if not further. Fishtown held its shad festival in late April, and Lambertville NJ holds its shad festival about the same time (April 27 & April 28th this year.)

        1. re: cwdonald

          Shadfest Facebook page says no Shadfest this year :(

          Hopefully Johnny Brenda's still serves it as the season comes into full swing. I did the special shad menu at Oyster House last year and it was underwhelming and expensive. The old Oyster House used to do a great, simple preparation of broiled shad plus roe.

          1. re: barryg

            When you say Shadfest Facebook page are you referring to the one in Fishtown? Lambertville is definitely on...

              1. re: cwdonald

                CW - Just so you know, last year's Shadfest in Lambertville was a total waste of time and gas. There was only one booth selling shad tacos but they were out just as we arrived. Plenty of popcorn, boutique fries, sliders, fresh lemonade, fried cheese curd, funnel cakes and whatever, but the Shadfest of two decades ago is history. Neither a shad filet nor roe set to be found. However, the name still draws and clogs the town.
                CP

                1. re: Chefpaulo

                  Noooo! I was wondering why I haven't been getting my postcard reminding me to preorder tickets. That was a good time CP with the trees just budding on the delaware dressed in that bright pale green. /sigh.
                  R and S Keystone used to have shad and shad roe as specials but if they still do I keep missing them.
                  CP were you around for that new hope restaurant festival many years ago? That was a true fiasco if there ever was one. It was all traced back to some ham. My mom dodged a bullet, well a trip to the emergency room because she didn't like the looks of the ham being offered and asked for a slice from a different roast.

                  1. re: givemecarbs

                    Carbs,
                    I've been to the New Hope festival many times since 1980 but not consistently. I'm glad I missed the tainted ham fest.
                    As for ShadFest, save your gas and pennies. It really was a bust. Lots of long lines to be served anything but shad. The last really good one was in 2000 or 2001 when restaurants were competing with baked, broiled, chowdered, frittered and omeletted shad filet and mushrooms stuffed with shad roe ( a winner!) but no more.
                    I guess the Chinese have discovered shad and are buying them all up. Where else could they have gone?
                    CP

                    1. re: Chefpaulo

                      CP many well dressed new yorkers were violently ill. Food poisoning is not pretty. Lucky for new hope there was no internet back then.
                      I've gone to the shad festival for many years but not very recently. Our family used to prepay for tickets for the shad dinner served at the fisherman's club or something and eaten on picnic tables along the delaware. A few years ago we stopped getting the postcard reminder. I don't know if we got kicked off the mailing list for inactivity, we skipped it for a few years, or they just stopped having the dinners.
                      Some shad roe enthusiasts would disagree with the use of bacon as they feel it overwhelms the delicate flavor of the roe. They call for a quick saute with no butter added. It is divine to score the shad and the roe on one dinner plate. I like your recipe. Remember how happy people were when the shad returned to the delaware? The river had been polluted for so long.

                  2. re: Chefpaulo

                    That's a great point.. frankly the best think about Shad fest is the poster that changes each year. It has become a celebration of spring, rather than a celebration of shad. I checked the participants this year and I believe one place is serving shad chowder. Other than that, I am not aware of any shad being served.. such a pitty.

            1. re: betsydiver

              May is pretty much the tail end of the Shad Roe season. It's been available in local supermarkets around here (VA) for several weeks now.

            2. It was on the menu at Fuji in Haddonfield as a special this week according to facebook!

              1. I've never had shad roe. What's it like? How is it usually served?

                I had the trendy Paddlefish roe for the first time recently at the Blackfish Downton Abbey dinner, and enjoyed it. But it wasn't remotely as good as the Ossetra we had at Le Bec Fin.

                2 Replies
                1. re: PhillyBestBYOB

                  PBBYOB, Wegmans has fresh roe sets. As the taste and texture are unique, I'd rather not draw a taste analogy.
                  Preheat the broiler, separate the roe sets (they come as a joined pair) and wrap each in a thin slice of bacon. Broil about 5 minutes and turn sets over for another 5 minutes. Serve with a fresh lemon wedge and (for total decadence) dip in drawn butter.
                  Needless to say, heart UNhealthy but once a year shouldn't hurt.
                  CP

                2. We had marvelous shad roe at Fuji in Haddonfield last weekend. It was accompanied with bacon and crispy onion strips. A real treat!
                  However, ask if they have it when you make your reservation. They run out of it quickly.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: sylviag

                    I am jealous you had it sylvia! Trying to figure out when I can get there before shad season ends.

                    1. re: Bigley9

                      Feby's in Wilmington had it on the menu last night.

                  2. Fuji in Haddonfield. Excellent!