While bluefin tuna is the darkest and most commonly used for sushi. Yellowfin tuna, “Atun Claro”, is the most commonly canned tuna. The Bonito del Norte is known for its white flesh, exquisite flavor and delicate texture. Bonito del Norte tuna is found in coastal waters of the Bay of Biscay in the Basque region of Spain during the summer season when they come north to dine on the Cantabrian Anchovy. During the summer they fatten up for their return journey south.
Just when the tuna are nice and fat, fishermen harvest them with fishing rods. Each tuna is individually line caught and not netted; making them fully dolphin safe. Once the fishermen arrive at the docks with the day’s catch, the highest grade tuna are auctioned off to premium canning companies like Ortiz and Arroyabe. The big fish are processed right on the docks within twenty four hours of being caught, cooked in seawater, and canned in olive oil. The result is the most tender, silky preserved tuna in the world.
Use these premium tunas for those appetizer presentations or tapas
dishes’ where having a solid piece of tasty tuna is important. One beautiful presentation is bonito del norte paired with thick slices of heirloom tomatoes, crunchy fleur de sel sea salt, and a drizzle of luscious Spanish extra virgin olive oil. For a truly decadent product try the ventresca, (tuna belly) it is the softest, fattiest and most delicate part of the fish, referred to as the toro in sushi parlance. It presents as lighter and sweeter on the palate than the loin. A spoon is our preferred medium for ventresca tuna when we are looking for a transcendent tuna experience.
Great Ciao carries the Bonito del Norte from Arroyabe and Ortiz, along with a family reserve Bonito del Norte from Ortiz that has been aged in the family cellars for an additional year. If you are looking for a great tuna for more everyday use (because there’s nothing wrong with tuna salad) we also carry superb canned Yellowfin tuna in both retail and food service sizes from Flott in Italy. All of our tunas are packed in olive oil, and sustainably fished using dolphin safe methods.