Posted by: gardner310 | October 2, 2009

Virtual Shopping for Fish??

Another contribution from ICTA (International Culinary Tourism Association).

Currently I am in Whitianga on New Zealand’s Coromandel Peninsula which is about a 3 hour drive from Auckland. The Coromandel is known for its coast, and of course with coast comes seafood. Whitianga itself has just held its annual scallop festival where people came from far and near to sample these delectable shellfish. I have been here myself for a few weeks now and after sampling the local catches in the local restaurants I felt the need to buy some and cook myself. 

So I asked the question, where can I buy the fresh fish I’ve eaten here? The response was not really what I expected, “do you have a mobile?” came the reply which confused me for a moment. Upon seeing my perplexed reaction, the woman continued, “There is no fishmonger here in Whitianga but if you want really fresh fish you send a text to a boat owner and ask to be placed on “the list”. When the trawler comes into the harbour the owner will send out a text explain the type of fish they have caught along with the price. You simply text back with your order which is confirmed by yet another text which also provides you with a time to collect your order and a reminder to “bring your own bag”. I was used to shopping online or in a store. This virtual shopping was new and I could not wait to try it out! I ordered my fish and went expectantly at the designated time to the harbor, with bag in hand. I was not disappointed and the fish was amazing, yet another first place award for the local, unique and memorable.”

This is how we can elevate ourselves form a tourist to a traveler.  Food is a fabulous way to get involved in local culture.  Try it!


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