We feel it’s important for you to know more about it and understand why it’s definitely worth the fair market price. Available year-round with peak catches in the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico occurring during the summer and fall, black grouper meat cooks up very firm with big flakes and holds its moisture better than many other fish.
Well, the black grouper we catch is a cold water grouper that is caught at least 100 miles offshore. Due to the depths of the water that far out, the fish are constantly swimming around and in motion.
Many restaurants use a red grouper, which is a shallow warm water fish. To ensure the freshness and quality of the black grouper we serve, we bring them in whole, so we can inspect the gills, eyes and other areas of the fish.
The Florida coast is teeming with all kinds of wonderfully tasty fish you can enjoy in endless ways both at home and in restaurants. Whether you want to take a boat out into the open waters and cast a line into the deep blue yourself or you prefer to pull up a chair and order your catch of the day from a local seafood restaurant, here are the four best Gulf Coast fish to eat fresh in Florida.
This type of fish has a very mild flavor (somewhere in between sea bass and halibut) with a light, sweet taste and large, chunky flakes, almost like lobster or crab. But you’ll also find it served in fillets which are baked, grilled or broiled with a flavor-bursting medley of garlic, butter, olive oil and key lime juice.
If you prefer your fish to be filleted, Snapper is amazing when marinated in the same citrus-garlic-cilantro mix mentioned above and quickly sautéed in a hot pan with a drizzle of olive oil before being served with light, fluffy rice and fresh seasonal veggies. Shook is really popular among local fishermen because it offers a fun challenge to catch and it tastes fantastic.
In Santa Rosa Beach, Buddy’s Seafood Market always has a fresh supply of Mali, grouper and other in-season fish. During the week she knuckles down and gets the job done, but on the weekend she spends her time soaking up the sunshine on the little volcanic island she calls home.
Grouper is a salt-water fish, found on the menu in restaurants and within stores throughout the United States. There are three varieties available that vary in flavor and price: red grouper, true black grouper, and gag.
If you don’t have a reliable source for fresh grouper, consider buying the frozen product. If you can do a touch test, give it a poke to make a dent in the flesh.
Its high levels of oil help it maintain a lovely moist texture even if it’s a little over-cooked. It’s also tasty eaten on its own, on skewers, with a zesty lemon marinade, a creamy tartare sauce, or a combination of butter, garlic, and lime juice.
The debate for whether grouper is best eaten with batter, crumbed, floured, or with nothing added will always rage on. Blackening is a quick and straightforward method that produces moist fish encased in a flavor-packed coating.
Although blackening is suited to outdoor grilling, you can also cook the fish in the oven or fry it in a pan. Preheat a large skillet on the grill or stove top on high heat for at least 10 minutes.
Rinse the fish fillets in cold water, then pat dry with paper towels. In a large bowl, combine the melted butter with all the dry seasoning.
Once all the ingredients are evenly distributed, transfer the mixture to a platter or large plate. Add olive oil to the skillet then cook the grouper on a high heat, covered.
Garlic tarragon basil thyme oregano paprika cayenne parsley As groupers are a reef-dwelling fish, they have the potential to be contaminated by toxins, which can lead to Ciguatera poisoning.
Your best option to avoid getting sick is to check with the seller if the fish comes from a hotspot for Ciguatera. Some problem areas include the Caribbean Sea, Hawaii, and coastal Central America.
It is prized for its moist meat that easily flakes into big chunks once cooked. Grouper is considered to be a white fish, along with haddock, catfish, tilapia, and snapper.
It’s relatively high oil content makes it a simple fish to avoid overcooking. It is a blank canvas that allows the creative cook to pair exciting ingredients with the fish.
If you enjoy fish that isn’t too full of flavor then you might also like to check out our sea bass guide. Reading Time: 7minutesGroupers are some of Florida’s most iconic fish species.
From monster Goliath's to delicious Scamps, these big bottom-dwellers are a favorite on most Floridian fishing trips. One of the largest species of Grouper in the Atlantic, Backgrounder are loved by commercial crews and recreational anglers alike.
The average catch in Florida is around half that length, weighing between 5 and 20 pounds. Backgrounder live around rocky bottoms and reefs on both sides of the Sunshine State.
They spend their summers spawning in much shallower seas, though, as little as 30 feet deep. Juveniles stick to these inshore spots until they’re big enough to fend for themselves.
Commonly known as “Grey Grouper,” these guys are a staple of reef fishing trips around the Gulf and up the Atlantic. They don’t grow as big as Backgrounder, usually maxing out somewhere around 50 pounds.
However, younger Gags can be found in estuaries and even seagrass beds, so don’t be surprised if you hook one while you’re on the hunt for Redfish and other inshore species. Bigger fish hunt around muddy and rocky coastal waters.
Young Goliath's will head right into estuaries and look for food around oyster bars. Their huge size and fearless curiosity made them an easy target, and they were overfished almost to extinction in the late 20th century.
Luckily, Goliath Grouper are strictly protected these days, and you can only fish for them on a catch-and-release basis. From teaming up with other predators to catch their dinner to reportedly fanning bait out of traps for an easy snack, they’re far brighter than most people give them credit for.
Sadly, this intelligence comes with the same natural curiosity that put Goliath Grouper in hot water. Nassau Grouper are critically endangered, and their numbers are still falling.
If you come across one, count yourself lucky for the chance to meet it and make sure it swims off unharmed. Nothing says “reef fishing in Florida” like a boastful of big, tasty Red Grouper.
These deep-water hunters are the reason people bother to go offshore when there are so many fish in the shallows. The average Red Grouper weighs somewhere in the 5–10 lb range, and anything over 2 feet long is a rare catch.
You won’t come across them in much less than 100 feet of water, and you can easily find them in three or four times that depth. They also grow much bigger than Scamp, meaning you’re in for a real feast if you catch one.
They’re one of the easiest deep-water fish to identify, even though catching one is pretty rare. NOAA has declared Speckled Hind a Species of Concern, mainly because they have so little data on them.
If Goliath Grouper are the kings of the shallows, these guys dominate the deep. Add in the fact that they live several hundred feet down, where all fish taste great, and they become the dream catch of many deep dropping enthusiasts.
Their dappled, red body and bright yellow fins provide camouflage around the deep, rocky structure that they hunt around. Yellow fin’s scientific name, Mycteroperca Vanessa, roughly translates to “Poisonous Grouper.” This is because they tend to have very high levels of ciguatoxin.
They’re slightly smaller than Scamp on average, but many anglers say that they taste just as good. Yellow mouth Grouper are uncommon in the Gulf of Mexico, but you can bag yourself a colorful feast all along Florida’s Atlantic Coast.