A Seafood Lover’s Delight

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Piles of Gulf Shrimp.  Grouper and Snapper fresh off the boat. Stone Crab ready to be cracked and dipped in butter. And an enormous fish in an icy bin…

The Island Seafood Market is a local favorite on Matlacha.  Locally owned and family operated, it specializes in fresh, local, wild caught, Florida seafood.  With a perfect location on Matlacha Pass and a friendly knowledgeable staff, the Island Seafood Market is a seafood lover’s delight.

The atmosphere at the market is casual and laid back.  The cases are full of fresh grouper, snapper, shrimp, mullet, clams, oysters and stone crabs.   In addition to the fresh local seafood, you can find regional specialties including salmon, snow crab and main lobster tails.

The market also carries a variety of specialty spices, homemade sauces and other tasty accompaniments to enjoy with your seafood.

Unsure of how to prepare seafood or looking for suggestions to mix it up a little?  The easy-going, friendly staff can help.  They even go as far as offering to assist with a cooking emergency after hours.  I’m sure I’m not the only one who finds that a bonus.

The Island Seafood Market offers a lunch menu with a choice of a fresh fish or crab cake sandwiches, Peel and eat shrimp,  and homemade fish chowder.  Fresh tartar sauce is made on site.  Prices range from $13.95 to $17.75

There are a few tables inside as well as tables outside with views of Matlacha Pass.

I recommend dining outside.  The view is fantastic and the local pelicans, perched on pilings waiting for a sample, are friendly.

I was lucky enough to get a tour of the back room filled with seafood right off the boat.  Icy bins with snapper, black grouper, red grouper, scamp and shrimp were ready to be cooked and enjoyed.

Island Seafood owns its fishing boats, including the Majek, which spends a week at a time one hundred miles off shore before returning with its catch.  Other boats return daily with fresh grouper and snapper.

Katie Fisher, co-owner of Island Market says that over 90% of their product is local.

The seafood market’s mobile truck delivers fresh seafood to neighboring communities, providing fish, shrimp, scallops and homemade dip.  The turquoise truck can be seen from Bonita Springs to Boca Grande.

After my opportunity to meet the owners, the lesson on different types of grouper, and tour of the fresh catch stored in icy bins, I was ready to make my purchase.  Two pounds of large pink gulf shrimp and fresh Snapper caught this morning.  What could be better in this sunny tropical destination?

The enormous fish, stored on ice out back?…

A seventy-nine pound black grouper caught off shore yesterday.   Bring on the tartar sauce.