I lived in New Haven, Connecticut for five years while I went to graduate school. Although some of my friends might balk at this, and certainly time and distance has given me a shot glass of perspective, I enjoyed living there–most of the time, anyway. New Haven is an old city with a surprisingly rich food culture and filled with enthusiastic people. Also they let me cook on TV a bunch of times. Anyway. We wrote a post for our old blog last year extolling the wonders of the #1 Fish Market in North Haven, and until recently I have been hurting for a replacement, even though I moved to the supposed center of the universe.
Of course, I have been to fish markets here, and the one in my neighborhood is fine, but its selection is wanting at times and the prices are a little steep… and the less said about the fish place in Chelsea Market the better (again, prices not commensurate with…well, anything. I refuse to pay top dollar for food prices dictated by New York real estate vagaries and at those dollar per poundages, those scaly buggers better cook themselves). I used to make fresh fish every single week but recently I had fallen off in my pescetarianism, until fishy fate smiled. E was swapping stories about food shopping in the Big Apple with a co-worker and former New Yorker when she told Elizabeth about her favorite fish place, Sea Breeze Fish Market.
Sea Breeze is an amazing market. They stock huge amounts of seafood daily, all at fair prices and it’s all fresh as a daisy. The folks behind the counter are knowledgeable and helpful so if you get confused about, say, how to deal with the hollowed out head of an octopus or why there are sold out of live blue crabs on Labor Day, they’ll tell you a quick story as long as there’s nobody waiting behind you in the line. The shop is small and usually busy when we visit on Saturday, and if you want something popular like whole crabs I’d suggest calling ahead or getting there early to make sure you get what you need. It’s a block west of the Port Authority 42nd street stop and two from Time Square so anyone can get there from Uptown on the 1/2/3/A/C/E, the East Side via the N/Q/R/S or points east on the L. I cannot recommend visiting this place enough if you have even a passing love of seafood, you won’t be disappointed. Find an intriguing recipe involving a sea creature and head on over to break the ice. If you’re in the neighborhood, pay Sea Breeze or your local fishmonger a visit and have fun. Until next time, cook on!