Hoo man, I had no idea when I signed up for this trip that we’d be going THAT far out, or that it would be THAT much fun AND educational, but luckily, it was all of those things when I went out with #clanfish this week for Jeffrey’s Ledge Appreciation aboard the Cayo Mio with Clandestino Charters.
We set out super early—6:30am-ish—and were rewarded with a gorgeous sunrise and the most perfect weather we could hope for. There were six of us fishers (or anglers)—Evan Mallett of Black Trumpet Bistro, Serena Galleshaw of Seacoast Local, Howard Altschuler of The Portsmouth Herald, Bert Cohen of UNH’s College of Life Sciences and Agriculture, Michael Soldati of Soldati PR, myself, and Captain Keper Connell.
I got a book recommendation before we even got underway— Cod: A Biography of the Fish that Changed the World, by Mark Kurlanski. I learned a lot about cod, the Gulf of Maine, the fishing industry (both commercial and as a way to personally access a native local and sustainable protein source), and the history of the port on the trip, but will definitely be following up with a reading of that book.
My catch of keepers ended up being 5 cod and 2 haddock, and I caught a handful of smaller fish that I tossed back to go about their days (making sure each one was carefully unhooked and swum off happily). Everyone else caught a bunch as well (although I believe the prize for most keepers caught was won by me!), and Evan Mallett certainly caught the biggest fish of the day— a huge cod that he took home whole. A master chef such as himself knows how to use every last bit of that fish.
Speaking of Evan’s culinary expertise, I was able to get some great cooking tips for my slew of filets—and I fried up some simple beer battered cod that night for my dinner. PBR and flour. Who knew beer batter was so simple? Evan mentioned that beer batter was four ingredients, but I never nailed down what the 3rd and 4th ingredients were, and my dinner was fine with just the PBR and flour batter dip. (You can read Evan’s Esquire interview with a fried fish sandwich recipe here.)
From the ocean to my dinner plate, garnished with a killer upper arm workout and a healthy dose of Vitamin D. What a great day. If you’re into fishing, or just getting up close and personal with your native local food source, I highly recommend a trip with Clandestino Fishing Charters—great captain, knowledgeable of Jeffrey’s Ledge and its rich sea life, and a rollicking fun time.
See the Flickr album of the trip HERE: