clock menu more-arrow no yes
Photo: Et Voila!

Shad Map: Where to Eat Shad and Shad Roe Right Now

View as Map

Herring and mackerel are familiar to most diners. So what's roaming in nearby waters that's similar to those household fishes? It's shad. Starting in March, the saltwater fish makes its way up from the Southern Atlantic Ocean and back to northern freshwaters where they spawn. And where they're apt to end up is on a plate near you.

Known for having an oily texture, many chefs soak the fish in milk or buttermilk to rid the filets of any fishy flavor. It's often paired with bacon or prosciutto. There are two reasons for shad's limited availability on menus. One, the season is incredibly short and only lasts a few weeks from March through April. And two, shad is ridden with tiny bones, making it difficult even for the expert fishmonger to clean. Some chefs slow-roast the shad to melt those tiny bones, while others opt to skip the filets entirely and focus on serving the fish's roe.

Here are 10 places to find shad and shad roe on menus right now.
—Marissa Bialecki


Read More
Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. 1789

Copy Link
1226 36th St NW
Washington, DC 20007
(202) 965-1789
Visit Website
Who says beer-battered fish can’t be glammed up? 1789’s executive chef Anthony Lombardo serves pan-roasted shad roe with a parsnip puree, bacon relish alongside a shad filet wrapped in lardo and then beer-battered and fried. Lombardo hopes the fried filet is the gateway for newcomers to be more adventurous and try the roe.

2. BlackSalt

Copy Link
4883 Macarthur Blvd NW
Washington, DC 20007
(202) 342-9101
Visit Website
For the do-it-yourself crowd, BlackSalt market has cleaned and ready-to-cook shad roe. Diners in the restaurant section can opt to select shad roe from the market and have it prepared in-house. Chef Thomas Leonard says he usually serves the shad roe with a bacon sherry gastrique with cherry tomatoes, basil and spinach. Depending on availability, you can find shad roe there through the end of April.

3. Brasserie Beck

Copy Link
1101 K St NW
Washington, DC 20005
(202) 408-1717
Visit Website
For the month of March and while supplies last, diners can build an entire meal around shad at Brasserie Beck. Start off with shad roe that’s been seared and wrapped in prosciutto and served with lobster chowder. Then move onto a shad filet wrapped in more prosciutto and served with rosemary and fingerling potatoes.

4. Clyde's of Chevy Chase

Copy Link
5441 Wisconsin Avenue
Chevy Chase, MD 20815
(301) 951-9600
Visit Website
Right outside the city’s limits, Clyde’s in Chevy Chase is putting shad roe meuniere on the menu. Think a typical a la meuniere preparation—roe dredged in flour and served with a brown butter, chopped parsley and lemon sauce. Clyde’s takes it one step further by serving it with bacon and crispy fried potato wafers seasoned with Old Bay.

5. Equinox

Copy Link
818 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20006
(202) 331-8118
Visit Website
What isn’t enhanced by some slow-cooking and duck fat? Equinox is preparing a sous vide version of shad roe with fresh thyme and duck fat which is sautéed to finish. Wilted arugula, a pistachio smoked bacon butter and a roasted apple and fennel puree round out the dish. Diners can order it off the menu through April.

6. Et Voila!

Copy Link
5120 MacArthur Blvd NW
Washington, DC 20016
(202) 237-2300
Visit Website
Yet another meuniere preparation is gracing the menu at Et Voila. This one is served with salsify, a lambic framboise and reduction of the Belgian beer, Duvel. For good measure, there’s also a flan made from brussels sprouts and guanciale. Sounds fancy? It is.

7. Food Wine & Co.

Copy Link
7272 Wisconsin Ave
Bethesda, MD 20814
(301) 651-8008
Visit Website
We’re sensing there’s a theme of shad and pork. Chef Michael Harr wraps the pan roasted roe in swiss chard and prosciutto. With a nod to Spring approaching, the dish has a sweet pea puree and heirloom beets and peas.

8. Mintwood Place

Copy Link
1813 Columbia Rd NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 234-6732
Visit Website
Taking the extra labor to “honor the fish” itself for its “sweet, rich and oily” flavors, chef Cedric Maupillier serves both the filet and roe together with lardo, crushed Kawi broccoli and red bliss potatoes, brown butter and a lemon demi-glace. Take note that the roe is served medium-rare.

9. Range

Copy Link
5335 Wisconsin Ave NW
Washington, DC 20015
(202) 803-8020
Visit Website
Pull up a chair at the beautiful raw bar or any seat in the house for that matter at RANGE. Chef de cuisine Matthew Hill wraps the shad roe in Benton’s Bacon and adds an onion soubise (that’s a béchamel with onions in layman’s terms). If it sounds too rich, the radish salad should even things out.

10. Rappahannock Oyster Bar

Copy Link
1309 5th Street Northeast
Washington, DC 20002
After slurping down a dozen oysters, customers can move onto the shad roe at Rappahannock Oyster Bar down in Union Market. The roe is currently being served with a brown butter emulsion, fried capers, bitter greens and slices of crusty, grilled bread. General Manager Jean Paul Sabatier says the dish will be changing every few weeks to keep things fresh, so be on the lookout for new variations.

Loading comments...

1. 1789

1226 36th St NW, Washington, DC 20007
Who says beer-battered fish can’t be glammed up? 1789’s executive chef Anthony Lombardo serves pan-roasted shad roe with a parsnip puree, bacon relish alongside a shad filet wrapped in lardo and then beer-battered and fried. Lombardo hopes the fried filet is the gateway for newcomers to be more adventurous and try the roe.
1226 36th St NW
Washington, DC 20007

2. BlackSalt

4883 Macarthur Blvd NW, Washington, DC 20007
For the do-it-yourself crowd, BlackSalt market has cleaned and ready-to-cook shad roe. Diners in the restaurant section can opt to select shad roe from the market and have it prepared in-house. Chef Thomas Leonard says he usually serves the shad roe with a bacon sherry gastrique with cherry tomatoes, basil and spinach. Depending on availability, you can find shad roe there through the end of April.
4883 Macarthur Blvd NW
Washington, DC 20007

3. Brasserie Beck

1101 K St NW, Washington, DC 20005
For the month of March and while supplies last, diners can build an entire meal around shad at Brasserie Beck. Start off with shad roe that’s been seared and wrapped in prosciutto and served with lobster chowder. Then move onto a shad filet wrapped in more prosciutto and served with rosemary and fingerling potatoes.
1101 K St NW
Washington, DC 20005

4. Clyde's of Chevy Chase

5441 Wisconsin Avenue, Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Right outside the city’s limits, Clyde’s in Chevy Chase is putting shad roe meuniere on the menu. Think a typical a la meuniere preparation—roe dredged in flour and served with a brown butter, chopped parsley and lemon sauce. Clyde’s takes it one step further by serving it with bacon and crispy fried potato wafers seasoned with Old Bay.
5441 Wisconsin Avenue
Chevy Chase, MD 20815

5. Equinox

818 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20006
What isn’t enhanced by some slow-cooking and duck fat? Equinox is preparing a sous vide version of shad roe with fresh thyme and duck fat which is sautéed to finish. Wilted arugula, a pistachio smoked bacon butter and a roasted apple and fennel puree round out the dish. Diners can order it off the menu through April.
818 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20006

6. Et Voila!

5120 MacArthur Blvd NW, Washington, DC 20016
Yet another meuniere preparation is gracing the menu at Et Voila. This one is served with salsify, a lambic framboise and reduction of the Belgian beer, Duvel. For good measure, there’s also a flan made from brussels sprouts and guanciale. Sounds fancy? It is.
5120 MacArthur Blvd NW
Washington, DC 20016

7. Food Wine & Co.

7272 Wisconsin Ave, Bethesda, MD 20814
We’re sensing there’s a theme of shad and pork. Chef Michael Harr wraps the pan roasted roe in swiss chard and prosciutto. With a nod to Spring approaching, the dish has a sweet pea puree and heirloom beets and peas.
7272 Wisconsin Ave
Bethesda, MD 20814

8. Mintwood Place

1813 Columbia Rd NW, Washington, DC 20009
Taking the extra labor to “honor the fish” itself for its “sweet, rich and oily” flavors, chef Cedric Maupillier serves both the filet and roe together with lardo, crushed Kawi broccoli and red bliss potatoes, brown butter and a lemon demi-glace. Take note that the roe is served medium-rare.
1813 Columbia Rd NW
Washington, DC 20009

9. Range

5335 Wisconsin Ave NW, Washington, DC 20015
Pull up a chair at the beautiful raw bar or any seat in the house for that matter at RANGE. Chef de cuisine Matthew Hill wraps the shad roe in Benton’s Bacon and adds an onion soubise (that’s a béchamel with onions in layman’s terms). If it sounds too rich, the radish salad should even things out.
5335 Wisconsin Ave NW
Washington, DC 20015

10. Rappahannock Oyster Bar

1309 5th Street Northeast, Washington, DC 20002
After slurping down a dozen oysters, customers can move onto the shad roe at Rappahannock Oyster Bar down in Union Market. The roe is currently being served with a brown butter emulsion, fried capers, bitter greens and slices of crusty, grilled bread. General Manager Jean Paul Sabatier says the dish will be changing every few weeks to keep things fresh, so be on the lookout for new variations.
1309 5th Street Northeast
Washington, DC 20002

Related Maps