Sophisticated Fish Farms
As leading chefs are turning away from the sea and toward sustainable hatcheries, it seems we’ve just begun to skim the surface of aquaculture.
At Esca, Mario Batali’s highly regarded seafood restaurant in New York, customers might be taken aback to know that their fillets of rainbow trout, marinating under a pink blanket of cherry blossoms, were swimming the day before not in any lake, river or sea — but at a farm in New Jersey, where the growth of its gill-bearing inhabitants is carefully monitored. Until recently, favoring wild over farmed fish has been the obvious choice, with much of the latter assumed to be lacking in taste and texture. But with new techniques in breeding and harvesting — such as controlling the salinity of the water, and limiting the population density — forward-thinking chefs, who are as interested in preserving our natural environment as in cooking tasty food, are changing what we eat and from where it comes.
From “Farming for Fish” by Aimee Lee Ball for The New York Times T Magazine, 2016; Photo by Bjorn Keller
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