1 Fish Market's Bobby McNeil always had a deep affinity for seafood. He spent his childhood perusing Gambardella's Fish Market with his Sicilian mother, and his young adulthood hauling cumbersome fish as a wholesale seafood trucker. “There was something I liked about handling raw fish, handling nature,” McNeil told the Yale Daily News. “I sort of found my calling.” When he opened a fish market of his own, McNeil honored New Haven's maritime heritage by offering a spread of live lobsters and blue crabs, local Connecticut river-boned shad, wild salmon, and an ample assortment of steamers, mussels, and cockels. And while many modern-day fishmongers rely on direct-order flights to fill their display cases, McNeil gets his stock the old-fashioned way: through twice-weekly trips to New York's Fulton Market—a bustling hub of activity filled with professional fisherfolk, wholesalers, and seafood plucked fresh from local waters.
Popular among Yale professors and local seafood connoisseurs, #1 Fish Market satisfies discriminating palates with its fresh shellfish and sushi-grade tuna, while a lineup of pre-prepared dishes, such as Rhode Island clam chowder and homemade lobster bisque, delights visitors with a taste of hearty New England fare. The market's ever-changing stock always features a variety of fresh-caught fish, such as scallops, sole, halibut, and cod, as well as a selection of frozen items that presents guests with more exotic feasts of Chilean sea bass, octopus, and Alaskan crab.