Longboat Key is the place to be if you want to experience all that Florida has to offer – fun in the sun and seafood galore. Sometimes though you may find yourself wanting fresh seafood and a local fish market is the best place to get this craving satisfied. If you’re staying on Longboat Key, you’re in a prime place to catch as much seafood as you like but if you just want to reap the awards right now for amazing fresh seafood, feel free to venture off to the many fish markets surrounding Longboat Key.
Find a Market Near You
If you wander over to Anna Maria Island, just over the bridge to the mainland, make sure you check out the Star Fish Company in Cortez. A lot of the fish markets require somewhat of a drive and a place worth taking time for is a place off of U.S 41, just past University Avenue, is called Capt. Brian’s. You can always get your seafood cooked here if you prefer but the seafood is definitely always fresh. We have included a list of other seafood and meat markets around Longboat Key for your convenience.
- Oneco Meats ~ 6 miles from Longboat Key
- AP Bell Fish Co ~ 7 miles from Longboat Key
- National Fish & Seafood Inc ~ 7 miles from Longboat Key
- Butcher’s Block ~ 8 miles from Longboat Key
- Snead Island Crab & Fish House ~ 10 miles from Longboat Key
- Sun Coast Beef & Provision Inc ~ 10 miles from Longboat Key
- Save On Seafood Co ~ 26 miles from Longboat Key
- Pincher’s Crab Shack ~ 14 miles from Longboat Key
- Reef Fresh Fish Market ~ 33 miles from Longboat Key
What to Cook – Local Recipes
But how do you know the best fish to get and how long is it technically considered fresh? These two questions are probably the most popular questions we get. Well first, the table quality of the fillet drops off a bit after 24 hours in the fridge, and after three days, it’s really not considered fresh anymore by fishermen standards—though still fine to eat to most people.
As far as the best fish to get, that depends on your taste buds. If you only like “white, flaky” fish, you’ll love tripletail. The meat is rich and flakey—and melts in your mouth. Yellowfin is like the filet mignon of fish. It’s lean, red-blooded, sea packed flavor packs a protein punch like no other. Snapper and grouper are another popular choices, snapper being the sweeter and more firm of the two. Catfish is a popular choice for the south, battered and friend, please. Floridians can shuck lobsters like Midwesterners shuck corn. Florida’s spiny lobsters can make for a fancy meal if cooked properly. Most people usually eat only the tail, but the claws delectable as well.
Local Favorites and Fare
Big Bend Scallops are not the same a bay scallops, and you can’t just buy them from your typical grocery store. These scallops are closed to commercial harvest and sale. But each summer, throngs of folks come to Big Bend towns to dive in the shallows and catch buckets full of the bivalves. Just about everybody likes Shrimp except if your allergic so if you’re in Florida, you should try and seek out two varieties of Florida shrimp: Key West Pinks (also called Tortugas shrimp) and the Royal Red shrimp. Key West Pinks come from the Gulf off the Keys and are meaty, sweet and delicate and are incredible on the grill.
Crappie is the freshwater delicacy of Florida—even though it sounds like crap. This fish yields light, firm, mild white fillets that usually great breaded and fried for home cooked meals. Whether you grill, fry, or bake your favorite Florida fish, you are bound to make a delicious meal out of it. When you have so many options for fresh seafood, it’s really hard to make a choice. However, remember you are in Florida so just ask a local when in doubt. Longboat has everything you need to make the weekend memorable, especially if you plan on grilling out with your loved ones in your vacation rental this weekend. Longboat Key is the place to be whether you decided to stay on the island or spend the day off, you won’t be disappointed.