In this era of depleted oceans, sustainable seafood is the best choice. Whether you are eating at home or dining out, in a restaurant or in your grocery store, ask the question~
“Do you sell sustainable seafood?”
I recently engaged in a conversation about ocean friendly practices at a Monterey Bay Aquarium event with Jordan Winery in Healdsburg, California.
The Taste of Healdsburg event was designed to educate guests about Seafood Watch, a leader in creating science-based recommendations that help consumers, chefs and businesses choose seafood that’s caught or farmed in ways that don’t harm the environment. Seafood Watch raises public awareness about sustainable seafood issues through consumer guides, their website, their mobile apps and through outreach efforts.
Each new voice added to the Sustainable Seafood cause… helps shape the practices of the entire seafood industry. Each time that a consumer requests only fish that is farmed using sustainable practices, that’s one step closer to a solution for overly depleted oceans.
Held in Sonoma County at Jordan Vineyard & Winery, the event was a success. Tucked among the rolling hills of Sonoma’s Alexander Valley region, Jordan Winery is a Wine Country gem, complete with vineyards farmed using sustainable practices, a diverse culinary garden and an abundant amount of wild space.
Sustainable Seafood + Sustainable Wine
Sounds like a perfect pairing to me!
We enjoyed plates prepared by chefs who are committed to creating delectable ocean-friendly cuisine, most of them local.
The strolling reception included cooking demos held among the wine barrels and the opportunity to meet some of Healdsburg’s most talented culinary leaders. All the while… tasting through Jordan’s award-winning sustainable wines. We sipped on the newest addition to the Jordan family… the 2014 Chardonnay and 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon, just released to the public, while enjoying our food.
The event was designed to educate consumers on how to make better seafood choices for a healthier ocean. It may seem like there are plenty of fish in the sea, but one look below the surface tells a different story, says biologists.
Chefs at each station, spoke with guests, explaining their unique dishes all the while teaching about sustainable practices and how to implement these techniques in our everyday lives.
At The Monterey Bay Aquarium demonstration, with Chef Matt Beaudin, Jordan Winery guests learned about MacFarland Springs Trout raised locally in Susanville, California.
McFarland Springs Trout Farm is the only trout farm IN THE WORLD that uses a red-algae based feed that is completely hormone and antibiotic free. There is zero trace of mercury or other heavy metals because the fish are only fed red-algae. Not too shabby.
Not to mention… it’s absolutely delish!!
Not to mention…Chef Beaudin is easy on the eyes…. making for a fabulously entertaining presentation for us ladies in the crowd.
Thanks for being a good sport while I heckled you a bit, Matthew, all in good fun. When you next find yourself in Monterey… catch Chef Matt at his wonderful restaurant, Cindy’s Waterfront, right by the Aquarium for more sustainable seafood.
You’ll most likely catch me there too… he’s a doll.
One thing that all of the participating chefs really drove home to participants at Taste of Healdsburg, was that our own everyday choices when purchasing fish, have an influence on the way that seafood is caught and farmed worldwide.
Marine environments are currently under intense pressure to provide for our ever-growing population and the growing popularity of fresh fish on restaurant menus.
However, research suggests that fisheries are able to recover or stabilize their own populations… when responsible management and regulations are in place. Events like this one in Healdsburg at Jordan Winery are a great way to open the conversation on such an important issue ~ Sustainable Seafood.
What You Can Do
The Seafood Watch app for Android and iPhone brings you up-to-date recommendations for ocean-friendly seafood and sushi.
Did You Know?!?
Ninety percent of the world’s fisheries are now fully exploited, over-exploited or have collapsed.
There is a strong connection between good farming, good cooking and good eating in Wine Country. We know how to do food and wine right and we know how to go sustainable.
Eating fish is a smart choice. It’s a lean protein with great health benefits. But make sure that when you purchase your seafood next, you do it right.
It may be one-meal-at-a-time… but it is a start.