Seafood in the Summer: A Sonoma Specialty

By Kevin Hess

We’ve reached the midway point of the summer, which serves as a reminder that fresh seafood production in Sonoma is at its peak.  There are plenty of coastal California favorites that you don’t want to miss out on. Whether you are adventurous and want to catch your own meal or prefer to have someone else do the preparations, our suggestions will have you dining like a mariner in a galley in no time!  

Salmon & Rockfish – Known for its versatility, salmon preparation possibilities are endless and allow for all to enjoy. Bake it, grill it or poach it.  Smear on some BBQ sauce, use teriyaki for an Asian flair or use butter and herbs for a classic style.

Rockfish has a sweet flavor and slightly firm texture, making it an ideal vessel for baking, sautéing or broiling.

Sonoma offers fishing excursions so you can catch your own and feel like a pro. North Bay Charters in Bodega Bay offers ocean fishing along the Sonoma Coast and in Bodega Bay, giving those eager for an adrenaline rush a chance to test their skill.  

Abalone – A polarizing mollusk, abalone has a reputation for having both loyal backers and steadfast opposition. Those loyalists point to abalone’s chewy and somewhat crunchy consistency as a way to enjoy its salty flavor. Some say abalone is best grilled, though it can also be eaten raw. In this aspect, abalone is reminiscent of a clam.

Sonoma Coast Divers provides a great opportunity for adventurers to find abalone firsthand with its diving classes and experienced guides.

 

Dungeness Crab and Oysters – Plenty of Sonoma restaurants have these favorites on the menu and we’ve done the work for you and found our top selections. Rocker Oysterfellers in Valley Ford features a Dungeness crab and artichoke cake you must try, while finding fresh oysters from Tomales Bay.

In you’re in Santa Rosa, stop by Santa Rosa Seafood Raw Bar & Grill and try the BBQ oysters or the Cajun fried oyster tacos for dinner. If you’re part of the lunch crowd, the oyster Po’boy is a fresh take on a southern classic.

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