THE LOBSTER PLACE NEW YORK

 
When I arrived in New York last spring, I had two priorities: first, to have our apartment organized, and second, to figure out the best places to source high quality ingredients for our meals. The latter seems to be a never ending journey with my passionate pursuit to meet, visit and learn about local farms in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. The experience has not always been positive, to my dismay I've found many farms that continue to rely on chemical spray as part of their farming practices, but it has armed me with more information to make decisions and that in itself makes the time and effort entirely worthwhile. While I have found a good handful of organic farms to rely for fresh produce, I still toggle between a couple of sources for meats. I've been successful in finding reliable sources for good quality pork and poultry, and while it is not always local, I've been most impressive with the wide array of fresh seafood at the Lobster Place at the Chelsea Market in New York. 


So I thought it would be fun to bring you along with me to visit The Lobster Place, my favorite place to go seafood shopping. In addition to the consistent high quality and freshness, the exciting variety at this market always inspires me to cook with new and more exotic seafood finds.

Fresh, live lobsters from Maine ($9.95/lb).
Check out the gigantic claws on this baby! It almost looks difficult for this guy needs a fork lift to move his claws.

Mayan Shrimp ($18.95/lb) Wild from Educuador, sweet, succulent and meaty.
These critters are so big that it only took nine of them to reach a pound. I simply cleaned, seasoned with Himalayan pink salt and seared on a cast-iron pan for a succulent, smoky finish. I think this may be my second favorite shrimp varietal.

Look at those delicate translucent coral pink shell.
Can you tell whether these shrimp are cooked? These are U-10 White Shrimp from Louisiana ($18.95/lb), the U-10 denotes that it only takes ten pieces to reach a pound, and that's what I call a jumbo shrimp! And for your notes, this pink color is how they arrive fresh from the ocean. I haven't figured out why shrimp from the Gulf has this ready to eat shade, but I can tell you that the pronounced fresh briny sea salt flavors makes this variety my top choice.

Shrimp, wild from Maine, $4.95/lb, small, sweet and tender.
You can see the grayish-blue roe on the bellies of these shrimp. These little guys from Maine look like they're ready to eat, but they're not cooked yet. The color is deceiving, isn't it?

Oysters, ($1.25-$1.50/ea). The Lobster Place also has an impressive variety of oysters on hand, always offering no less than half a dozen different types.




Sea cockles from New Zealand. I simply adore the beautiful blush of green and burnt caramel on their shells.

Live sea urchin from Montecito, CA ($6.95/lb). Love it or hate it, but it's very unlikely you have feelings in between. This spiny deep ocean water creature is commonly featured on the menu of high-end Japanese restaurants, where you will likely find it under the name of 'uni,' typically served in the raw sushi format.

 

Stone crab claws ($26/lb). For some odd reason, this picture reminds me on penguins. Isn't that odd?

Snapper Wild Gulf of Mexico, $8.50/lb. Mild, flaky, sweet. I pick one up every other week to broil in the oven.
 

Sardines ($6.95/lb) from Rhode Island, rich and full-flavored. These do take a bit of work cleaning, but if you are a fish lover, they're great seasoned with sea salt and grilled, finished with a sunny squeeze of fresh lemon juice.

Turbot, Farmed, Chile, $10.95/lb. I've never tried turbot, but the skin is stunning. The shiny coat looks like an amalgamation of leather and jewels.
 

Mahi-Mahi ($13.25/lb) Sweet and mild in flavor. This filleted fish is one of many beautiful fresh specimens that I take home to pan grill. In addition to Mahi-Mahi, there's always a good variety of salmon, arctic char, black cod, Chilean sea bass and many more.
 

Yellowfin Wild South Pacific ($20.95/lb). I have tuna only a few times a year, so it's a real treat whenever do have a good piece of tuna. Look at the deep reddish-pink color of its almost translucent flesh. It's no wonder people compare sushi to the appearance of candy.


Red Trout, farmed from Idaho ($7.50/lb). One of my favorite ways to prepare it is cooked in a browned butter with almond slivers.

Blue crab, wild from Maryland, $3.95/lb. These little guys were piled on top of one another, I felt badly for them. 
 

Whitebait, Wild, New Zealand, $5.50/lb. Typically fried and eaten whole, aka 'fries with eyes.' I've never made these at home, because I'm afraid of deep-frying in my kitchen, but I've enjoyed 'fries with eyes' at many French restaurants.  
 

Scungilli, whole baby conch, $14.95/lb. I've always wanted to try conch but didn't know how to prepare them. When I did find a recipe, I returned only to find out they were a one time item. Oh well, perhaps next time. 
 

Thanks for coming along with me to The Lobster Place! I hope you enjoyed the visit!

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60 comments:

Ravenous Couple said...

wow, we felt we just walked through the market with you...we love places like this and everything looks so fresh. We hardly see conch like that (mostly frozen here)..but the first thing that comes to mind in bun oc' a popular noodle dish from Hanoi

Jen @ Tiny Urban Kitchen said...

This looks like the place you took me to! :) That was a great market. Thanks again for the tour of Chelsea market. :)

Sook said...

Wow! I need to live in New York so I could get fresh fish like these at the market! I love seafood and when I lived in Korea, it was so easy to get nice, fresh fish any time of the day and they were so cheap too! I miss that a lot. Thanks for this post!

Angie's Recipes said...

About to get heart attack when I read this entry....it has been agessssssssssss since I last had lobster. You guys are lucky!

HippieMom said...

Oh! Thank's for the great tour!Everything looks so fresh..We love seafood in the house!
((XOXO))

Bellini Valli said...

I have only seen one other market with variety like this one when I was in Seattle. The shrimp look amazing and I would love to try the "penguins".

3 hungry tummies said...

Wow everything looks so fresh, I'm dying for some seafood now! Great photographs!

Gloria said...

I love lobster! and all similar!! Im in love of your pics!!! nice! gloria

♥peachkins♥ said...

I just made some lobster sandwich today!

It must be nice to c heck out some seafood here...

Penny said...

Everything looks so fresh. I enjoyed the tour.

Simply Life said...

wow they have such a great selection!

A Year on the Grill said...

I love this post! Sadly, seafood and Kansas does not match up well, so there is nothing like this near me. Thanks for sharing

Pam said...

I love lobster and what a layout...yum!

Enjoy!

Cathy said...

I wish we had something like that here - living on the prairies is definitely a killjoy when it comes to good, fresh seafood!

Beth said...

So much beautiful seafood...so little time! :-)

MaryMoh said...

So much fresh seafood!!! This is blowing my mind away. I really want to move to New York.

high low said...

I love Lobster Place - especially to get a lobster roll, sushi, and seafood soup for lunch.

George Gaston said...

Shopping with you is not only an adventure, it is educational, too. Oh, how I miss living in New York City, because not only is an exciting city, it is a city were you can literally can find any type food your heart desires.

Thanks for taking us along to The Lobster Place....

KennyT said...

I love market like this! Those lobsters and oysters so tempting!

doggybloggy said...

on my way to get some sea urchin - I love it when it is this fresh and I hope they still have some, usually this is a one time thing also and you have to be lucky.

Joy said...

My goodness that is SOME spread of seafood. Ive never been to this place-- I will definitely venture there the next time I get a chance to visit NY. Those crab claws look a-m-a-z-i-n-g!!!! If only Dallas had a seafood market like this...

Andrea@WellnessNotes said...

Thanks for showing us around The Lobster Place! Now I want some seafood! :)

Jessica@Foodmayhem said...

I'm not that far from Chelsea Market but for some reason I always forget it's there. Thanks for the reminder.

Nancy said...

Wonderful post! I've been to their Chelsea Market shop, but have not purchased from them yet. Will have to pick up some of their beautiful seafood next time I'm in the area!

Natashya KitchenPuppies said...

I love marketing with you!
Such wonderful variety and great prices! If you ever come to Canada you are in for some serious sticker shock. :)

Jenny said...

cad i twit holdin my dose dow? I've never met a piece of seafood yet I like. Sad. I keep trying and trying to like it but it's like black coffee. Just can't do it. My husband would be probably licking the screen if he read your post, though, so I'm not gonna let him see it - at least on my computer!

Dolce said...

Awww the lovely sea urchins... I am with the "love it" people, having fond memories of super fresh, just out of the water in the Mediterranean sea!

As for fries with eyes, in French we call them "friture" :)

Gulmohar said...

I was slwly scrolling down, admiring the pics and thought why you have shown Penguins...then I saw your writing..So it's not only you...good post !

Impromptu Diva said...

wow, this post made me feel like i was there with you at the lobster place! beautiful photos you have here!
i enjoy going to market... luckily, we have a lot of seafood markets here in cali too... but when i used to live in long island, ny, we used to go to flushing, queens to get fresh seafood...such a unique experience to shop there.

The Blonde Duck said...

We don't get a lot of fresh seafood in SA--I wish we did. I've been on a fish kick lately!

Diana Bauman said...

Christine, I'm so excited you posted this! This is exactly the kind of place I was hoping you'd be able to take me to when I get to NYC! I'm not sure if it's going to be possible but I really wanted to take a cooler with dry ice to haul some fresh fish home with me, lol! Do you think that's crazy?? The sardines and shrimp for sure!! Let me know what you think :D

Erica said...

Wow! That is beautiful! I love fresh seafood.....Next time I visit NY, I will be going there :)

Katy ~ said...

Even when I lived on the Cape (Cape Cod, Massachusetts) I'm not sure that I ever saw fish as beautifully presented as this. This is fabulous.

Fuji Mama said...

What a fabulous place! The only seafood we have here is at the grocery store chains and it is extremely limited. I have to drive at least 30 minutes to get to a place with a decent seafood selection. Oh how I would love to be near this place!

Michelle said...

We lived in FL and your pictures make me want some fresh caught seafood. In FL the oysters were like 15 for $1.

Loved the fresh seafood in FL. Now the FL drivers are an entirely different story!

Ju (The Little Teochew) said...

What a post! Totally enjoyed reading every word, and every photo. For a brief moment, I felt like I was really there with you. Thanks for the virtual tour. It was amazing.

5 Star Foodie said...

What a great seafood market here - the lobsters and the shrimp are just gorgeous and all the fish looks so fresh!

Chow and Chatter said...

wow love Chesea market and seafood

Kim said...

What a wonderful market filled with all sorts of fresh seafood and fish. Looks like a great place to do some shopping :D

cookbookapprentice said...

Thank you so much for taking us on your trip! One of the main things I miss about living in NY is access to the variety of fabulous restaurants and unique ingredients. I saw the penguins too :).

Stacy said...

I love your posts! And now I need lobster! :)

Trissa said...

I love fresh produce - this market is definitely a place my husband and I need to go to when we go to NYC in April. Thanks for sharing!

Divina Pe said...

Wow, lots of fresh produce. I have to visit this place one day.

Heavenly Housewife said...

Look at all that beautiful sea food! I simply adore lobster. I tried it last year for the first time when i was in barcelona and now i am absolutely hooked.

nancy at goodfoodmatters said...

How fortunate you are to have this market--everything looks so fresh (and what stunning photographs, too!) I agree, Louisiana Gulf shrimp is something special. Do they try to offer only those creatures of the sea that are not in danger of being overfished?

Lori said...

Even though where we live isn't exactly small I feel like such a small-towner envious of the big city with posts like this. I would love to have access to all that fantastic food!

Cocina Savant said...

What a stunning array of seafood. and it all looks incredibly fresh. The conch reminds me of the last time I was in the Bahamas drinking local Sands beer and eating conch fritters at a tiny beach bar. Forgive me if it sounds a bit like Hemingway's time in Key West.

Chef E said...

Cool post Christine, hubby has been wanting me to see if our seafood store off Nassau can get sea urchin, and it does remind me when he returns to make some seafood!

Katherine Aucoin said...

Just hang in there for the organic items. They have really excelled in popularity in the fast 3 or 4 years along with becoming more economical and readily available.

I miss getting fresh off the boat seafood!

Joanne said...

Thanks so much for this tip! I am always looking for a place to get good quality meat/fish products. Most of the supermarkets are obscenely disgusting (read: food emporium). I am going to have to check this place out!

Apples and Butter said...

I walked by this place when I was in New York in October and at the Chelsea Market. It sounds like I should have stopped in! Oh well, I don't think my hotel would have appreciated all the seafood I would have had to buy. I'll keep this in mind for the next time I am out visiting friends. Thanks for the tour!

Cinnamon-Girl♥ said...

What gorgeous fish and seafood! I would love to have that at my fingertips. I've stopped eating fish, aside from frozen shrimp, due to a few bad experiences with the local market. I'm ready to pack and move!

The Cooking Photographer said...

Hi Christine,

It must be fascinating to be in your food world. There is so much going on your way. I love just reading about what you’re learning, especially as you are a San Francisco native, and the ideas out there are such a different world than New York.

Having Lived in California myself, I tend to stick to that way, and the Northwestern way of cooking and eating where I live now. I'd like to live in New York for awhile and learn about the other side. For now though I'll just live vicariously through your blog. :)

Laura

Juliana said...

I love lobsters...and definitely can assure that will like this place, will keep in mind when visiting NY :-)

Unplanned Cooking said...

How can you not love a store called The Lobster Place? And if it's name wasn't enough, look at those pictures! I am in heaven just thinking what I could do with a store like that...

Debinhawaii said...

You are lucky to have such a great seafood place with so many wonderful varieties. Those shrimp especially are amazing!

Donna-FFW said...

What an absolutely wonderful post. The photos are so beautiful, I felt like we were along for the ride. I have got to check this place out.

Barbara said...

My daughter lives in NYC and also loves this place.
Your seafood photos are wonderful; everything looks bright and fresh! Reminded me of the fish at the Venice market. I used an entire roll of film there!
(A conch salad can't be beat, so I hope you can grab some next time!)

Brad said...

Thanks for sharing your experience, I'LL have to check it out next time I'm in NYC. Glad we connected thru foodbuzz, can't wait to read more of your recipes.

Barramundi importers said...

Fresh seafood does not always mean that it has not been frozen; it sometimes means that it was frozen fresh. After all, if you didn’t buy it frozen, you would be limited to only a few choices of seafood instead of being able to enjoy seafood from around the world.