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Real Good Fish | Fish Species | | Fish Species | Bringing you the freshest sustainably caught LOCAL seafood!
“If we eat from our own shores, we're much more inclined to protect them, the water quality, and our marine environment.”
- Paul Greenberg, American Catch
Black Cod / Anoplopoma fimbria

Black cod, also known as sablefish or butterfish due to its velvety texture, which results from a rich content of healthy oils and omega-3 fatty acids. 

Most Black cod is shipped to Japan, where their seafood loving culture snaps it up. It’s becoming more prevalent here, as Japanese chefs have...

Black cod, also known as sablefish or butterfish due to its velvety texture, which results from a rich content of healthy oils and omega-3 fatty acids. 

Most Black cod is shipped to Japan, where their seafood loving culture snaps it up. It’s becoming more prevalent here, as Japanese chefs have introduced it to Americans, most often as Miso-Glazed Black Cod or simmered in a Japanese style broth. 

Culinary Tips: Because of its cold water habitat Black cod is packed with healthy oils which protect it from over-cooking and keeps the fish moist. We recommend baking, roasting, or grilling it with big flavors.

It is also fantastic when smoked - try our Good Food Award-winning Carmel Canyon Smoked Black Cod!

Catch Method: Bottom trawl, bottom longlines, and pots.

Sustainability: The sablefish population off the California coast is extremely healthy at 96% of its target level and is harvested at sustainable rates (NOAA FishWatch). Black Cod in California is is part of the California Groundfish Collective which is particularly effective at collecting data and designing sustainable management strategies.

- MBA Seafood Watch rating: Best Choice and Good Alternative

- NOAA Fish Stock Sustainability Index: 4 out of 4

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Opah / Lampris guttatus

Also called moonfish, this colorful and large species is one of only two living species in the Genus Lampris. They live in deep tropical and temperate waters around the world and can easily weigh over 200lbs. Opah are often found swimming with schools of Bigeye Tuna in the eastern Pacific Ocean,...

Also called moonfish, this colorful and large species is one of only two living species in the Genus Lampris. They live in deep tropical and temperate waters around the world and can easily weigh over 200lbs. Opah are often found swimming with schools of Bigeye Tuna in the eastern Pacific Ocean, which is why we usually see them as bycatch from Tuna boats. 

Opah has recently become popular in seafood restaurants but is still relatively unknown outside of Hawaii and southern California. They have three distinct types of flesh that all appear different and cook differently too.

Culinary Tips: Opah is one of the most versatile species on earth, not just in the sea! The salmon-colored top loin is firm and lean and is best grilled or seared. The belly which is a lighter orange/pink color is fantastic for raw preparations, or even for smoking or curing. The deep, red, beef-like abductor muscle (usually called the "cheek") is like a lean, tender flank steak and should be prepared as such.

Catch Method: Pelagic long lines

Sustainability: Since Opah is usually a bycatch species from well-managed Tuna fisheries, we are eager to sell it and provide those fishermen more value for their trip. The management of this fleet is rated as "highly effective" and the longlines used to catch Opah are designed to minimize bycatch as much as possible (Seafood Watch). 

- MBA Seafood Watch Rating: Good Alternative

- NOAA Fish Stock Sustainability Index: N/A

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Swordfish / Xiphias gladius

One of the fastest and largest predators, swordfish have bodies that allow them to reach up to 50 mph. It is one of several large species known as billfish, which use their bills to slash at and stun their prey. They have unique features, such as special eye muscles and a heat exchange system...

One of the fastest and largest predators, swordfish have bodies that allow them to reach up to 50 mph. It is one of several large species known as billfish, which use their bills to slash at and stun their prey. They have unique features, such as special eye muscles and a heat exchange system that allows them to swim into deep waters for prey. Unlike most fish species, adult swordfish have no teeth or scales.

Culinary Tips: Swordfish is a meaty, steak-like fish that is best when grilled. It can handle bold flavors and marinades nicely.

Catch Method: Drift Gillnet or Longline

Sustainability: Most California swordfish is caught by drift gillnets, which come with extensive regulations to minimize bycatch, one of which is to simply close the fishing season for the year if bycatch levels are reached early. Swordfish populations in the eastern Pacific are considered "healthy" (MBA Seafood Watch).

- MBA Seafood Watch Rating: Good Alternative 

- NOAA Fish Stock Sustainability Index: N/A

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Thornyhead, Shortspine and Longspine / Sebastolobus alascanus and Sebastolobus altivelis

These species have many aliases: idiot fish, channel rockfish, fagiano ("pheasant" in Italian), bonehead, channel cod, gurnard, gurnet, hardhead, hooligan, lobe-finned rockfish, roundfin rockfish, scorpion, slim thornhead, and spinycheeked rockfish. Thornyhead are particularly interesting...

These species have many aliases: idiot fish, channel rockfish, fagiano ("pheasant" in Italian), bonehead, channel cod, gurnard, gurnet, hardhead, hooligan, lobe-finned rockfish, roundfin rockfish, scorpion, slim thornhead, and spinycheeked rockfish. Thornyhead are particularly interesting because they have adapted to the deep “oxygen minimum” layer of the ocean where most fish cannot thrive. They have huge heads, both long and wide, housing very large gills.

Thornyheads do not have swim bladders and are fairly hardy, which means unlike many other species that are brought up from the depths, they can be kept alive for live fish markets or released after capture with a much higher survival rate. 

Culinary Tips: Thornyheads are closely related to rockfish, so they are just as versatile and can be substituted for any rockfish recipes. Due to their small size and big heads, they are best prepared whole, roasted, steamed or fried, and eaten off the bone to maximize yield and flavor.

Catch Method: Bottom Trawl, Hook and Line

Sustainability: NOAA fisheries did an assessment in 2013 that found thornyhead stocks to be healthy. All thorny heads are well managed under the West Coast Groundfish Fishery. 

- MBA Seafood Watch Rating: Best Choice

- NOAA Fish Stock Sustainability Index: 4 out of 4

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