An introduction to toothfish
Known as the Chilean Seabass in the United States (or Merluza negra in Spanish-speaking countries), toothfish is not a relative of the Northern Seabass species, it is actually made up of two species, the Patagonian toothfish and the Antarctic toothfish.
The Antarctic toothfish (Dissostichus Mawsoni) inhabits the colder, more southerly reaches of the Antarctic oceans (generally south of 60 degrees), while the Patagonian toothfish (Dissostichus eleginoides) inhabits deep waters - up to 2000m, for larger individuals - north of 60 degrees, as far north as the fisheries of Argentina and Chile. They are long-living fish, regularly more than fifty years, with the Patagonian toothfish reaching more than two metres in length and 95 kg in weight.
Both species have pristine white, tightly-flaked flesh and high, healthy oil content that gives it a delicious buttery texture and taste, which - together with its ‘low-catch’ scarcity - makes it such a high value, highly desirable niche product in restaurants around the world.