They Had Tuna, Sea Bass, Salmon, and: Shark Tacos?

Fiesta-Goers and Seafood Lovers Sure to Remember 907-lb. Monster

Brian Colgate, pictured alongside the 907-lb. behemoth.
Sasha Felix

With the beginning of Old Spanish Days fast approaching, Santa Barbara Fish Market is preparing seafood for its booth. However, perhaps none of the food served this year will be as memorable as last year’s tacos. At last year’s Fiesta, Santa Barbara Fish Market’s booth had the rare option of shark tacos. And not just any shark, but a 907-lb. shortfin mako shark, caught off Rincon Point by area fisherman Mike Ettinger, who frequently sells his catch to Santa Barbara Fish Market.

However, the booth did stir up some controversy. “Some people think sharks shouldn’t be fished,” said Santa Barbara Fish Market owner and manager Brian Colgate. Nevertheless, there was an overwhelming response to the unusual fare-the booth sold more than 2,000 tacos! Even with several other fish options expected to be more popular, the largest demand was for shark.

This year, Colgate is excited for what the booth has in store for visitors. He has a large amount of locally caught sea bass; he said that it is not very typical for other businesses to produce and sell product that is directly from Santa Barbara. The sea bass will be sold in taco form. According to Colgate, they have sold ahi tuna from the south Pacific in past years, and he is thrilled to now have something from the waters of Santa Barbara.

Santa Barbara Fish Market’s booth will be set up again in De La Guerra Plaza. Stop by for some of the freshest seafood in town.


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