From the sea to your plate
“La Rochelle expertise”
Every day several kinds of fish and crustaceans are unloaded on the pontoons of the Port de Pêche for the fish market where fishermen, fish traders, wholesalers and retailers are found side by side. This seafood is then shipped to many restaurants in La Rochelle or you will find it at the market stalls, much to your taste buds’ delight!
Have you ever seen the logo “Savoir-faire La Rochelle” in the different fishmongers in La Rochelle and the surrounding area? It’s the collective trademark for La Rochelle’s Port de Pêche. “Savoir-faire La Rochelle” guarantees that the seafood has been unloaded and bought in La Rochelle’s port. It is therefore an indicator of quality, promoting fish, crustaceans and shellfish that have been caught by professionals who want to practise their job sustainably. These sailors that commit to sustainable fishing offer top of the range seafood to many consumers.
Experience the fish market
Behind the scenes at the Port de Pêche
Every summer, from July to September, La Rochelle’s fishing port team provide tours so you can discover behind the scenes of the fish market where you can help with the auctioning of the seafood. It’s a way to understand the journey of the fish from the unloading bay to being shipped and you can look at the unloaded products before they are sold. Just a heads-up, you’ll have to be a morning person because the tour starts at 5am! Workshops on how to cut up fish are also offered.
Port de Pêche festivities
Where fish fans come together
Every year La Rochelle and its neighbourhood committees offer a big festive meal outdoors, which is always fish, at the Port de Pêche in Chef de Baie. Fishing boats, tours of the fish market, information stands, live music and games for the kids await you at this big party in May/June that is always really popular.
Fishing tradition in La Rochelle
A bit of history...
La Rochelle’s fish market has taken place in several different places over the last few centuries. With developments in fishing boats, which improved fishing conditions and increased production, it became necessary to put the infrastructure in places that were bigger, better equipped and generally more suitable. Therefore, fishing moved over time from the Vieux Port in the 18th century, to the Bassin des Chalutiers, where they built the Encan, before moving again to the current Port de Pêche in Chef de Baie in the west of the city in 1994.
Some of these sites have now been converted like the old Couvent des Carmes on Rue St-Jean-du-Pérot became La Coursive, the national stage, or even the Encan in the Bassin des Chalutiers which will have worked for 41 years before it was renovated: the conference centre now takes up most of the northern part of the site, the eastern dock welcomes craftsmen and in the South West next to the dock with the slipway and the Bassin des Chalutiers docks is the Musée Maritime (Maritime Museum).
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