Matthew Stevens is a fresh fish wholesaler and fishmonger operating from St Ives and, since 1948, have run their family business delivering the highest quality fresh fish and seafood.
Devoted to promoting the benefits of fresh fish and sustainable produce, they strive to lead the market using traceable means and, through this practice, continue to make a positive impact on the environment and the community.
Wild Sea Bass that are hand-line caught are a prize catch. Available all year, price is variable depending on availability. Wild Sea Bass has a strong flavour ideal for Thai inspired dishes with white, flaky flesh that has a firm texture.
Wild Black Sea Bream are a non-pressured stock which means there are plenty available, particularly in Celtic waters. A superb tasting fish, it’s similar to Sea Bass but with sweeter flesh suiting dishes with subtler flavours such as Mediterranean vegetables and herbs.
Matthew Stevens always endeavour to source fresh Cod from local markets: however this is not always possible due to quotas and high prices. Consequently, at times, they buy Cod from Petershead and the Shetland Isles.
Grey (or Silver) Mullet is a common inhabitant of our marine coastal waters. It’s a bottom feeder that often prefers still, shallow water with a sandy or muddy bottom. However, Matthew Steven’s Grey Mullet are caught out at sea so they’re always clean once gutted so it’s important not to confuse the two.
There are various common Gurnards found swimming around the UK which are very similar in shape and taste. Matthew Stevens prefer to sell Red Gurnard due to its lovely colour.
Haddock is a close relative of Cod and has a similar texture but is more flavoursome; so-much-so, that Icelanders consider Haddock a superior fish.
The large majority of Matthew Stevens’ Hake is caught in Cornish waters. The flesh is quite soft, but firms up when cooking, and has good flavour. It’s fast becoming a popular substitute for Cod as it’s cheaper and holds together well when deep-frying.
John Dory have large heads that account for half their weight. The creamy-white flesh is meaty which takes well to peppery or hot sauces; the dense texture is ideal for pan-frying or grilling.
Ling is a large member of the Cod family and has firm meaty flesh. It has a large spine with big bones so they are not usually taken out. If removed, you’re left with a long distressed fillet: however the flesh is ideal for pies, fishcakes, stews and soups.
The majority of Matthew Stevens’ Mackerel is hand-line caught in St Ives Bay. A superb and very popular fish it’s both tasty and extremely healthy with a higher Omega-3 content than its Sardine counterpart. Mackerel works best with citrus-type marinades as sharp sauces complement its rich flavour.
A large majority of Matthew Stevens’ Monkfish is caught sustainably by local skipper, Danny Phillips, at Cadgwith Cove. He catches the fish in tangle nets allowing him to pull them aboard with minimal or no damage to the animal.
Pollack is eaten more frequently overseas by Europeans who love its flaky yet meaty texture. Demand for this fish is growing in the UK and it is highly recommended for barbecuing, curries, or any dish requiring chunky fillets or pieces.
Red Mullet have a beautiful sporting orange, pink and red skin. They’re often small and therefore ideal served as whole portions, giving great colour to dishes. Their diet consists mainly of small crustaceans giving their flesh a superb flavour that works well with fennel or tapenades.
Matthew Stevens source fresh Salmon from Scottish suppliers who are experts at the forefront of pioneering farming methods. Their approach to rearing Salmon gives priority to the health and welfare of this fresh fish, the long term protection of the environment and delivery of an outstanding product.
Sardines (often called Pilchards) are a small, oily fish packed with Omega-3 oils. They have a great-tasting meaty texture, ideal for barbecuing or as part of a salad or entrée.
Wild Sea Trout is a much sought after fish which is sourced from Scotland. Similar to Salmon in appearance, it is also rich in Omega-3 oils. Although it’s classed as the same species as Brown Trout, Sea Trout migrates to the sea whereas Brown Trout prefers fresh water.
Brill certainly remains under-rated as it’s much cheaper and equally as tasty as Turbot. Its flesh is on the sweeter side which benefits from enhancements such as wine reduction sauces.
A fish of superb quality and this is reflected in the price. The crisp, white flesh of this fish reaches its peak a day or two after being caught as the texture and flavour enhances.
The largest flat fish on the market and can weigh more than 300kg. Line-caught Halibut are few in number which means they are premium-priced and can only be ordered in advance.
Matthew Stevens source Lemon Sole from Looe Harbour day boats and Newlyn Market. A hugely popular fish, Lemons have sweet, delicate flesh that suits any sole recipe, in particular, creamy white wine sauces.
A close relative of Brill and Turbot rather than Lemon Sole. They’re more popular on the continent than in the UK which is a great shame, as they are prolific around Cornish shores and therefore quite affordable.
Is best eaten as quickly as possible as the flavour quickly fades. This popular strong-tasting fresh fish takes to sauces and different flavours well, and is great for battering. Spawning season for Plaice falls between February and April which leaves the flesh thinner and a little watery.
Are cut from a tasty flat fish abundant in our Cornish waters. There are three types of Ray which are sourced from Newlyn Harbour and Bideford: Blonde, Star and Owl.
An exquisite, highly-prized flat fish with great flavour and a firm texture. It has no scales but sports bony tubercles on the dark side of its body.
Matthew Stevens source two types of Clams from the South West. Palourdes are widely considered the finest variety probably because they taste great and steam open easily. Meaty Razor Clams are sourced from local divers.
Cockles, Whelks, Winkles
They are considered great snack foods but their popularity as a shellfish cooking ingredient has increased. Winkles are sourced from a supplier scouring the shores around Mousehole and Whelks from fishermen working off the Manhood Peninsula in Selsey, West Sussex, who use trap technology and various bait types. Cockles are raked from various seafronts across the UK.
Matthew Stevens have a fantastic purpose-built Crab production area, run by a specialist team, which houses boilers that cook live Crabs at the precise temperature required for safe harvesting of Crab Meat.
Don’t be put off by the peculiar look of this animal – it’s taste is a real treat. You can buy Cuttlefish whole and prepare it in your own kitchen, but this can prove messy if the ink sack punctures. Instead, Matthew Stevens can clean it for you by removing the hard aragonite bone and skinning and trimming the flesh.
Live Lobsters are sourced from Cornish waters, mostly the St Ives coastline, or from Scottish shores towards November/December. Matthew Stevens only accept animals of a legal catch size which is around 500g upwards.
Rope growing is a great way to cultivate quality Mussels. The ropes are suspended from long-lines that are anchored to the seabed, and the mussel larvae attach themselves directly to the lines.
They are cultivated in Cornwall are a treasured yet affordable delicacy and are among some of the finest shellfish in the country. Pacific (or Rock) Oysters are originally cultured in Rock and brought to the River Fal to mature.
Matthew Stevens sell a variety of Prawns including small, succulent Atlantic Prawns or Crevettes and giant, meaty Tiger Prawns which are frozen at source. Preserving produce in this way locks in freshness and retains quality.
Matthew Stevens shuck and hand-cut all scallops on-site straight from local day boats. This means the shells are not opened until the moment before you place your order, which helps them retain optimum freshness.
Squid & Octopus
Squid is sourced primarily from day boats at Looe Harbour. Octopus is available throughout the year however only small quantities are landed at Newlyn Harbour.