Fish-a-licious

Fish-a-licious

In the sleepy town of San Pedro where I used to live, there are only a few food destinations to write home about.

One of them is the fish market. On Saturday mornings, before the crack of dawn, the fishing operations down at the pier open up their warehouse-like spaces to the public. There are huge vats teeming with fish. Shellfish and squid on ice. Fresh halibut and barracuda at ridiculous prices. The place is packed with people elbowing for the best catch and the floor is slick with water, so watch out.

But if you can’t make it down to Pedro between 4-6 AM… Well, there is another option. It’s called Baja Fish (not to be confused with the chain called Baja Fresh). Here you will find that the owner, whose father owns one of the fishing operations, has taken care to get the best catch for you.

Every houseguest and Angeleno I’ve brought here agrees¬†that it is the best fish taco around. Although there are daily specials, and Swordfish and salmon are often on the menu, the halibut tacos are amazing (not to mention that halibut is, for the time being, not on the endangered list). The filets are dredged in parsley, garlic and oil, then grilled and laid onto tortillas with a generous helping of fresh cabbage slaw and seasoned mayo.¬†You can also choose to load up with fresh cilantro, onions, or a trio of salsas.

Yum.

Where?
A 25-minute drive south of downtown L.A.
611 S. Gaffey St., San Pedro, CA 90731

The fish market can be found where 22nd street dead-ends just after Miner St.

How did I find it?
I kept driving by Baja Fish and it looked cute! I heard about the market while living on my grandfather’s boat this summer. It’s a weekly ritual for many of the people who live down on the docks.

Tips on replicating the experience?
Ask them what to order, or just get the halibut fish tacos. Also, try before loading on the salsa… you might find that it’s just right without changing a thing.

And if you make it to the fish market, look for some folks selling tamales out of the back of their truck.