7 types of fish you must try in Croatia

Food & wine

Taste the culinary treasure hidden in the deep blue Adriatic Sea.

One of the most prominent characteristics of Croatian cuisine is the strong influence of the delicious, yet healthy culinary tradition of the Mediterranean, which means plenty of olive oil, wine, garlic, and of course, fresh seafood. Find out which types of fish are popular in homes and taverns all over Croatia!

Red scorpionfish (škarpina)

You’ll recognize this fish by its specific orange or brick-red colour and venomous spines, but don’t let the intimidating exterior put you off! Once the spines are removed, you can safely enjoy the delicate, juicy meat inside, which is the reason why this Croatian fish is so highly appreciated. It may be one of the priciest types of seafood, but the spectacular taste is well worth it!

Dentex (zubatac)

A bit more affordable than red scorpionfish, the zubatac is also more commonly found on the menus of families on the coast of Croatia. This whitefish has prominent sharp teeth and appetizing, rich meat that can handle a lot of salt in the kitchen!

European seabass (lubin/brancin)

If you see the words agač, lubin, dut, luben, smudut or morski grgeč on menus of Dalmatian taverns, know that those are just various names for the seabass. This tasty fish is a fast swimmer that’s difficult to catch, but once you do, it’s best to throw it on the grill, “Dalmatian style”, which is called “na gradele”.

John Dory (kovač)

The John Dory (also known as St. Pierre or Peter’s Fish) is known in Croatia under the names kovač, šanpjer or riba Svetog Petra. It has prominent dark spots on the sides of its oval, compressed body, and legend says that they were left by the apostle St Peter as he was catching fish, which explains one version of its name. The supple, soft meat of John Dory is a true delicacy best prepared on the grill.

European pilchard (srdela)

The official name is european pilchard, but you may also find it on menus listed as sardine. Because of its affordable price and tasty flavour, it’s definitely the most popular type of fish in Croatia. Grilled, cooked or fried pilchards are a simple, unpretentious dish available at every corner during summer season on the coast, which is why it should definitely be part of your vacation experience!

Sea bream (orada)

Thanks to its amazing white meat, orada or komarča is such a renowned delicacy fishermen started calling her the “queen of the sea”. It’s also one of the fish commonly found in the traditional Croatian fish recipe called brudet, one of the most famous examples of authentic Croatian food.

Monkfish (grdobina)

The grdo in grdobina literally means “ugly” in Croatian, and this huge-mouthed fish is definitely an example of the less visually appealing Croatian seafood, but still delicious nonetheless. It also has few bones, making it perfect for children so they can get their daily dose of healthy omega-3 fatty acids.

You can probably imagine yourself enjoying a fish prepared “na gradele” and sipping on some authentic Dalmatian wine while overlooking the sun setting over the Adriatic, and that is exactly what awaits you in the outstanding restaurants of Camping Village Šimuni. If you want to fully immerse yourself in the Dalmatian lifestyle, you can try fishing on the beaches of the camp, just keep in mind that you need to have a licence.

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