Wild sockeye salmon may not technically be in our foodshed, but thanks to the salmon CSA from Iliamna Fish Company in Alaska — the project is run by Brooklynites Christopher Nicolson and his wife Emily — it’s now available for pickup this fall from the Brooklyn Kitchen in Williamsburg. Most of the year Nicolson, 36, is an assistant winemakers at the Red Hook Winery in Brooklyn. (Read Amy Zavatto’s Edible Brooklyn profile of the place right here.) But each summer he travels back to his native state to fish and see family near the pristine waters of Graveyard Point, shown above. There his mother’s Alaskan family has fished for salmon for centuries, and in fact he wrote about his own experiences growing up working the waters in Edible Brooklyn in 2008.
Last year, he also launched the CSA in New York and in Portland, Ore., which for $198 delivers 12 pounds of flash-frozen and vacuum-sealed wild sockeye filets that Nicolson will head to out catch in person in late June and July, marking his 25th salmon season. You can sign up for shares here, which are delivered on one of three dates in September to Williamsburg.
Bring a cooler, and perhaps score a bottle of wine to pair with this amazing fish, which Nicolson, naturally, can easily recommend. “For me, Spanish sherries are a top choice for salmon,” he says. “Next, chenin blancs from the Loire. Next, the finest and most delicate pinot noirs from Burgundy, and finally, savagnin from the Jura. From Red Hook, I recommend our “The Electric” made by Abe Schoener [often available at Brooklyn Wine Exchange on Court Street –ed.] next a chardonnay made by Robert Foley (from Jamesport Vineyard fruit, Dijon clone 95), and, last of all, a forthcoming wine of my own that isn’t yet bottled.”
Perhaps we’ll get lucky and it’ll arrive right in time for the CSA.