Bluewater fish in the Wading River (Photo credit: Lee Meyer)
Seafood lovers take note – there’s a new place to pick up a fresh catch on the North Fork. Located in the heart of historic Wading River, next to the Brekky açaí-bowl cafe, the new Blue Water Fish Market sells fresh fish and take-out dishes prepared by owner Tom Infantolino.
A second generation fishmonger whose father owned a seafood market (the blue water fish market of the same name) in Queens for four decades, Infantolino moved to Wading River 25 years ago and started a wholesale fish trucking business with his family, while considering opening a storefront that would also include ready meals.
Infantolino discovered his love of cooking at his father’s fish market when he was a young adult.
“I started out by making three or four different items, and after a few years there wasn’t enough room in the store for the amount of dishes I was preparing,” he said.
It took a car accident that prevented Infantolino from driving its fish trucks in 2019 to make his plan to open his own storefront come true.
“I got a little bored sitting at home so I looked at this place,” said Infantolino, referring to Blue Water’s current location. Then the pandemic struck and he had no choice but to postpone his dream. When he discovered that the storefront was still vacant last January, he took his goals seriously.
The challenge then became to renovate a site that required a lot of work – during a shortage of building supplies and construction personnel.
“This place was a mess,” he noted of the old My Creperie location, now equipped with a blue nautical theme. “It took a while to open up. The cases I ordered six months ago with a six week window arrived three weeks before opening. Although he is frustrated that he was unable to launch his market at the start of the summer, Infantolino said his first week was a success.
“The people of this community are really supportive, very friendly and very happy to see a fish market here,” he said.
In addition to freshly caught local mahi mahi, tuna and swordfish, Infantolino sells its own daily specials, fish and chip lobster rolls, stuffed sole shrimp salad, baked salmon and clams on the half-shell.
So far, locals are addicted, with Infantolino having sold most of his inventory in the first week. Its lobster roll, in particular, drew raves. “I do it very simply,” Infantolino said. “Celery, a little onion, a little mayonnaise, salt, pepper.”
Blue Water Fish, located at 2 Sound Road, Wading River, is currently open Wednesday through Monday.