Eating fish is so good for you that the American Heart Association recommends you include it in meals at least two times a week to achieve a heart-healthy diet. While many supermarkets sell a variety of frozen seafood, the availability of fresh fish is usually much more limited, which is why those in the know seek out fish mongers who specialize in a variety of seafood and freshwater fish. Wondering where to find the top fish markets in the Philadelphia area? Here are five spots you should try.
9th Street Italian Market
919 S. 9th St.
Philadelphia, PA 19102
Philadelphia’s Italian Market is not just the oldest outdoor market in the U.S., it’s also the largest, with an expanse of fresh foods to select from. A popular gathering place, friends and family meet up in this iconic South Philly neighborhood to shop with favorite vendors and get a good deal on produce, baked goods, pastas, meats and fish, much of which is produced locally and offered up fresh. Of the market’s many venues, more than 30 are shops that sell food and groceries, three of which specialize in fresh fish. Between these three purveyors of seafood — Darigo’s Seafood Market, Anastasi’s Seafood and Marco’s Fish and Crab House —shoppers are sure to find what they need (and even what they didn’t know they needed), usually at or below market rates.
Creekside Food Coop
7909 High School Road
Elkins Park, PA 19027
CreekSide Co-op, a charming, small but efficient full-service grocery store just outside of Philadelphia known for its friendly staff and short lines. Nestled in the Philadelphia suburb of Elkins Park on High School Road at the site of the former Ashbourne Market, CreekSide is conveniently located and easily accessed. With a dedicated fish and seafood counter in the venue’s meat and fish department, the co-op provides members with a wide variety of fresh, sustainably harvested fish. Members who don’t see what they want for sale are encouraged to bring it the staff’s attention, and if the item can be found, the shop is likely to bring it in.
Gadaletos Seafood Market
929 S. High St.
West Chester, PA 19382
Located in the Philly suburb of West Chester, Gadaleto’s Seafood Market is known for stocking a vast variety of fresh fish, crabs, lobsters and shrimp. Blue crabs and award-winning jumbo crab cakes are always in demand, and once you’ve sampled the rich, creamy lobster bisque you’ll be hooked! Are you in the mood for shellfish? Gadaleto’s carries clams, mussels and oysters, too. Party trays and a full deli keep retail customers happy, and local restaurants turn to the market on a regular basis for their wholesale seafood needs.
Reading Terminal Market
51 N. 12th St.
Philadelphia, PA 19107
As popular with the locals as it is with tourists, Reading Terminal Market is one of the most visited venues in the City of Brotherly Love. Convenient to hotels, the convention center and public transportation, this vibrant indoor marketplace is always teeming with visitors. With abundant dining and shopping opportunities, Reading Terminal Market is a shopping mall, international farmers market and country fair rolled into one. Tucked into the maze of shops and stands are three venues that sell fish – Golden Fish Market, Wan’s Seafood and john Yi Fish Market. Between the three shops you’ll find live crab and lobster, shrimp the size of your fist, and a veritable buffet of whole fresh fish, fish steaks, and fish fillets – sliced to your liking if you take a moment to ask.
21 E. Lancaster Ave.
Paoli, PA 19301
With two Upper Main Line locations, one in Paoli and the other just down the road in Wayne, shoppers know they’ll find what they need at a good price at Seafood USA. As is the case with most fresh fish markets, availability and price at these sister shops regularly fluctuate with varying factors including season, weather conditions and demand for specific varieties of fish and seafood. That said, both shops carry an abundance of fresh fish, which is brought in daily and in many cases, prepped so that it is oven ready. If you’re planning a party or having the family over for the holidays, Seafood USA has you covered with party trays, homemade soups and salads.
Christy Ayala covers sports, recreation, the outdoors, and leisure activities in the Philadelphia area. She earned a masters degree in recreation administration from George Williams College and managed programs in the Midwest, Hawaii, and Pennsylvania. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.