Your Gaspésie experience would be incomplete without having tasted the freshness of fish and seafood! Here are 5 delicacies to enjoy during your vacation or to bring back in your cooler.
Gaspé lobster and its abundant meat
Recognized for its generous flesh and unique taste, Gaspé lobster can be enjoyed in many ways. Succumb to the reinvented club sandwich offered by Gaspé canteens by replacing the chicken with lobster meat! Let yourself also be tempted by the fresh lobster expertly prepared by the peninsula’s talented chefs.
For your picnics, you can get it cooked to perfection in several fishmongers. If you have a little time, cook it yourself in seawater! Purists will revel in it as it is once cooked; the others will add a dash of lemon, garlic butter or a sauce. The lobster fishing season extends from the beginning of May to the end of June in Gaspésie, but several fishmongers and restaurants keep lobster in their tanks throughout the summer.
Gaspé crab and its delicate meat
In the spring, when snow crab season is in full swing, Gaspesians stock up so they can enjoy the delicate and delicious flesh of this crustacean for as long as possible. You can taste it in the form of crab cake in several restaurants that count it among their specialties. Also discover it in the form of a roll or club sandwich in the snack bars of the region. Take them to go and enjoy them on the beach, by the sea! The small frozen jars of crab found in fishmongers slip easily into your cooler. Back home, they will make you dream of the Gaspésie of your vacation!
The tasty Nordic shrimp
Also known as the Matane shrimp, the Northern shrimp has been fished for a long time in Gaspé waters, especially in the La Côte and La Haute-Gaspésie sectors. In the spring, it’s a frenzy when the famous shelled shrimp come out. We are happy to peel them with our fingers during a shrimp roast!
In summer, northern shrimp can be purchased from fishmongers; do as the locals do and ask for a glass of prawns, to be enjoyed with a toothpick! Restaurants also prepare them deliciously, especially in rolls (especially offered in snack bars).
Cod: firmly rooted in tradition
Although cod have not been fished in Gaspé waters since the moratorium decreed in 1993 to protect the resource, this tasty white-fleshed fish still occupies a prominent place in the gastronomy of the peninsula. It is also imported by Gaspé fishing companies to make salted and dried fish. You can taste the cod in many dishes served in the restaurants of the region in the form of fillet, pâté, quiaude, galette or galette, or in the form of dishes prepared in the fishmongers. The people of Gaspé have a lot to say about the long tradition of fishing, salting and drying cod that is part of their history… Visit the Paspébiac National Historic Site or another establishment on the cod route to discover it!
Salmon: smoked or teased
The Gaspé know-how in terms of smoking is now recognized beyond the borders. Several restaurants on the peninsula will serve you smoked salmon as an appetizer or as a meal in salads, pastas, bagels and sandwiches… and even at lunch!
Ready-to-eat packets of Gaspé smoked salmon are ideal for enhancing your picnics and camping meals. Go to the fishmongers to get some or go straight to the smokehouse! The companies Atkins et Frères (Mont-Louis and Percé) and Fumoir Cascapédia (Cascapédia–Saint-Jules), in particular, welcome visitors.
Although commercial salmon fishing is no longer practiced in the Gaspé, it is possible to tease it by sport fishing. The region has no fewer than 22 salmon rivers and the Matapédia Valley is unquestionably the kingdom of this pink-fleshed fish!
PS! Fish soup is a must during your stay in Gaspésie. Whatever the variant – bourride, Gaspé soup, bouillabaisse… – you have to enjoy at least one bowl, in the restaurant or at the place of your choice thanks to the take-out counter at the fishmongers.
Recipes based on fish and seafood
To find out how to prepare or cook lobster, crab, northern shrimp and fish from Gaspésie during your vacation or when you return home, check out these articles on our blog:
Would you like to enjoy the freshness of Gaspé fish and seafood? To savor every moment, plan your stay to tourism-gaspesie.com. #gaspesie