A classic shot of Jean Louis Palladin and Rod on a Scallop Boat

New England Scallops: Maine Diver and Nantucket Bay

A classic shot of Jean Louis Palladin and Rod on a Scallop Boat

New England’s Chilly Waters are Home to Some of the Highest Quality Scallops in the World.

The Maine scallop season generally runs from December through April, while the coveted scallops of Nantucket are harvested November through March. The majority of New England’s scallops are harvested by mechanical dragging, with less than 1% of these sweet delicacies considered true “Diver scallops.”

Maine Diver Scallops

Many menus claim to have Diver scallops, but few understand the meaning of the term. Diver scallops require hand-harvesting from the ocean floor by professional fishermen who are also licensed scuba divers. More often than not, chefs and customers are told they are purchasing a Diver scallop without any verification.

Since owner Rod Mitchell first pioneered this practice in the late 1980’s for the late legendary chef Jean-Louis Palladin, Maine Diver sea scallops have become an industry standard for the freshest and best-sourced scallop. These are simply the sweetest, best sushi quality scallops available anywhere.


Maine Scalloper
Maine Scalloper Shucking Directly on the Boat
A Few Ways to Identify a True Diver Scallop:
  • The scallop meat (actually the shucked adductor muscle) should be firm and stand up solid when laid on a surface.
  • The scallop meat itself should react with a pulse when snapped by a finger to show that the mussel is still full of oxygen, which occurs when harvested by hand without the stress of being dragged in a scallop dredge.
  • There should be no white liquid present in the container or liquid from the scallop when seared, the telltale of soaking” in preservatives.

While diver scallops have minimum impact on the environment, the Department of Marine Resources closely monitors the health of all New England scallops.


The Cool Waters of Nantucket Sound is Perfect for Bay Scallops.

Nantucket Bay Scallops
Sweet and Delicate Nantucket Bay Scallops

Nantucket Bay Scallops are harvested by fishermen in small boats from the shores and bays of Nantucket Island using hand dredges. Scallops are landed live, taken ashore and immediately shucked, often by the fishermen themselves in dockside shucking shanties.

Nantucket Bay Scallops are smaller than sea scallops, approximately the tip of the thumb once shucked. Nantucket Bays are especially sought after because they can be served raw when fresh, and due to their ability to caramelize beautifully when seared.

New England’s Atlantic sea scallops are versatile in use, but connoisseurs swear that the scallop is the greatest raw bar selection. Otherwise, Bay scallops are preferred in ceviche dishes or are baked with herbs, wrapped in bacon, skewered and grilled, battered and deep-fried, or lightly pan-seared until the edges are a crispy brown.

We believe that Maine & Nantucket Bay Scallops are simply the best treats that the ocean offers

Nantucket Bay Scallops are currently available for approximately 60-100 per Lb. and are sold in 2 Lb increments.

Maine Dayboat Scallops are currently available as 10-20 count per pound and are sold in 2 Lb increments.