These Fishermen Swear by Frozen Seafood

A technique developed in the ‘70s changed the industry

Bridget Shirvell
Heated

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Scalloping boats off the coast of Stonington Borough, Connecticut. Photos by Bridget Shirvell.

“Frozen” likely isn’t the first word that comes to mind when you think gourmet seafood, but head down to the fishing docks in Stonington Borough, Connecticut, and you’ll find frozen sea scallops beloved by locals, visitors, and chefs up and down the East Coast.

The scallops arrive at the docks already frozen thanks to a flash-freezing method that happens onboard the boats. A few yards from the dock, locals and in-the-know visitors come to buy the scallops out of a small storefront that, when closed, has an honor-system freezer that allows customers to take a bag and pay via credit card or cash.

“The only way you’d get a fresher, better-tasting scallop is if you ate it right off the shell on the boat,” said Joe Bomster. The Bomster family developed the patented technology to freeze the scallops back in the 1970s and fished for years before selling the business to another local fishing family this past summer.

While the honor-system freezer might be unusual, the fishermen of Stonington are far from the only ones who swear by frozen seafood.

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Bridget Shirvell
Heated
Writer for

Freelance journalist writing #environment, #food, #travel. Digital Strategist. Golden Retriever Wrangler. Restoring a New England home. NYC & Mystic, CT