The first course – Fish

Out of the blue is Chorlton’s only dedicated fishmonger and holds the award for Best Food and Drink Outlet from The Co-Operative Manchester Food and Drink Festival.
Owner Dave Yarwood began trading in Manchester’s Arndale Market before opening in Chorlton in 2003 and he’s been advising and supplying us at North Star ever since.
90% of the fish they supply is wild and they stock a wide variety of both ‘everyday fish’ and specialities like wild turbot and native lobsters.
Dave’s priority is buying fish seasonally and he told me, when I met up with him for a chat, that that is his single answer to helping the sustainability problem. He said ‘if everybody bought fish seasonally and avoided spawning females (usually spotted with their eggs or roe), then there wouldn’t be so much of a sustainability problem.’
Currently, half of all fish caught in the North Sea are thrown back overboard dead and thanks to campaigns like Hugh’s Fishfight people are trying to put a stop to this needless waste. Now there is more demand for lesser known fish caught around British waters such as Pollock and megrim. Dave told me that when someone he knew bought a load of this fresh ‘excess’ catch that would usually be thrown away, it sold out very quickly.
He also commented on sourcing fish locally, ‘food miles aren’t so straight forward with fish. Local doesn’t necessarily mean fish landed in North West harbours such as Fleetwood, it tends to mean fish caught in British waters, so Cornish haddock or Scottish mussels still count as local.’
Unlike most supermarkets, the fish from Out of the Blue is handpicked and purchased on a daily basis from selected vendors. The shop has deliveries daily and often 2 or 3 times a day.
We thought the best way to showcase some of Britain’s best seasonal fish at our North Star Deli Supperclub launch on Friday 8th would be to make a delicious Mediterranean inspired fish soup using a variety of white fish, fennel, roast peppers, garlic and tomatoes together with seasonal shellfish such as clams. There are still a few seats available so if you’d like to book your place, click here.

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