June 26, 2013

Soup to Nuts: 'Freshest fish' closer than you might think

A couple of Portland businesses – Salt and Sea and Eat Local Fish – have adapted the CSA concept for the waterfront, selling just-off-the-boat seafood directly to you.

By Meredith Goad mgoad@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 2)

click image to enlarge

Allyson Jordan on Holyoke Wharf in Portland with the F/V Jamie & Ashley, one of two fishing boats her family owns. The other is the F/V Theresa & Allyson.

John Ewing/Staff Photographer

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A delivery from Salt and Sea will contain “whatever’s freshest off the boats,” says owner Justine Simon.

Courtesy photo by Michael Ferry and Kelsey Kobik/Salt and Sea

Additional Photos Below

That redfish was used in a lettuce "taco" with guacamole.

The Nicholses heard about Allyson Jordan on a Boston radio station, and waited until their next visit to Maine to order some redfish and pollock. They met Jordan down at Holyoke Wharf off Commercial Street, where her boats come in, to pick up their order.

"We cooked it that night, and it was absolutely wonderful," Burgess Nichols said.

Salt and Sea started out with just four members last November. Now they have more than 100 members and pick-up locations all around the greater Portland area and from Brunswick to Kittery.

"Being in local grocery stores and seeing people picking up haddock from Norway, or all this farmed stuff from Thailand at Trader Joe's, it was a real wake-up call," said Justine Simon. "We've got such a great resource right at our fingertips, and we just want to help people make the most of it."

Members pay upfront for regular weekly deliveries of fish over a two-month period. A single share, for example, includes deliveries of at least one pound of filets, enough for a weekly meal for two, for $96. The double share is two pounds of fish a week for $160.

The fish varies from week to week, but could include redfish, haddock, monkfish, pollock, flounder or hake. Simon recently began including squid and whole mackerel on that list as well. Occasionally members get some "extras" -- homemade hake cakes and one of six varieties of seaweed. Typical seaweeds are dulse for snacking, wakame for miso soups, and sea lettuce for salads.

Unlike a vegetable CSA, you can join this CSF anytime, and if you're going on vacation or just can't pick up your fish some week, you can put your account on hold.

The fish is stored in slurry ice, and isn't cut until the day it's delivered.

So next time you're thinking about treating your summer guests to some fresh lobster, consider adding some fresh local fish to the menu as well. It will be good for the fishermen and -- if you buy the under-used species -- good for the Gulf of Maine ecosystem as well.

Fishing, Simon said, is "such a big part of Portland's history. If we can just get more people eating local fish, that would really inject investment into Portland's working waterfront."

Staff Writer Meredith Goad can be contacted at 791-6332 or at mgoad@pressherald.com

Twitter: MeredithGoad

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Additional Photos

click image to enlarge

A day’s catch bound for Eat Local Fish customers is off-loaded on the Portland waterfront.

Courtesy of Allyson Jordan/Eat Local Fish

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Eat Local Fish operations manager Allyson Jordan plans to focus her efforts this summer touting some lesser-known species, such as redfish.

Courtesy of Allyson Jordan/Eat Local Fish

 


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