The coral reefs of Cozumel are being overrun with a voracious eating machine known as the Lionfish. Its original home is the Indio-Pacific Ocean. The most plausible explanation as to how it originated in these waters points to Miami during hurricane Andrew. It is believed that an aquarium which contained this venomous and invasive fish spilled its contents into Biscayne Bay in 1992. Since then it has slowly made its way to Cozumel. The reason why the Lionfish is a threat to our waters is twofold. First, it has an appetite for small coral reef fish and most importantly it does not have any natural enemies in our waters. It has not natural enemies until now!
In an attempt to stem the tide of these beautiful but deadly fish La Perlita plays its part by serving Lionfish on the menu!
La Perlita is an unassuming restaurant in the middle of Cozumel whose patrons are mostly local residents. In fact, if you didn’t know exactly where it was, you would never find it! We always purchased our fresh fish there because we know that the local fishermen bring their catch of the day there to sell to the public. In back of the fish market is a charming restaurant that is decorated with every manner of fisherman’s discarded buoys and ropes. It is also decorated with local art depicting the culture of this sleepy little fishing village before modern times. In fact the first time that we went there to not one single tourist was seated. And every table was filled!
So the purpose for our visit was to try what has become the scourge of Cozumel’s coral reefs; the dreaded Lionfish! The Lionfish has has migrated past the Florida straits and down the Florida Keys. They made their way slowly to Cozumel and are now full time residents.
The white meat filet of this beautiful
This delicious table fare has a delicate buttery flavor and my all-time favorite is the Coconut Lionfish! It has been said the we need to "Eat em to beat em"!
The chef at La Perlita CAREFULLY takes the venomous spines off and prepares this mouthwatering delight. You will not only support our conservation and lionfish research and removal programs. But you will have a very unique experience that will add to your adventurous vacation to Cozumel.
Having had scorpion fish and rock fish, I knew it would taste fine, mainly because the diet of a Lionfish is basically other fish.
When our waiter recommended the coconut Lionfish I knew it was going to be special. Since I love coconut shrimp (dipped in honey sauce) I was sold!
Incredible as it may sound my “coconut lionfish” was one of the finest meals that my palette has ever experienced! The portion was hearty, and beautifully displayed. By the end of our meal, there was not even a scrap left. My wife had a delicious seafood stuffed chile relleno!
I could go on about how wonderful and warm our waiter was, or what an incredible cultural experience we had; but I'm sure you get the idea!
In summary the Lionfish is a danger to our delicate ecosystem. We are encouraged to catch and destroy them before they destroy our marine life. If you would like to experience Cozumel from the inside, with genuine warmth and fantastic service; La Perlita is a MUST during your vacation to Cozumel! I am certain that you will be absolutely thrilled with the experience! And don't forget to order the Coconut Lionfish!
Cozumelmexico.net (Your Complete Vacation Guide)
La Perlita is located at: 10th St. Between Ave 65 Bis and Ave 70, Cozumel 77620, Mexico Phone: 869-8343