Canned Heat

Stock up on the best tinned fish on the market

Fabio Trabocchi is the chef behind a growing Italian empire in D.C., and we recently made him a very happy man. During his visit to the Test Kitchen, we shared with him our treasure trove of oil-slicked sardines, paprika-dusted octopus and other canned seafood.

The goods came from Maiden Lane, a New York wine bar that also happens to carry an excellent selection of tinned fish. Here are our collective favorites after our afternoon of tasting:

Jose Gourmet Sardines with Tomato Sauce ($12)

These sweet little Portuguese sardines are essential in Trabocchi's dill-laced bucatini.

② Ramón Peña Cockles in Brine ($45)

The respected 90-year-old company gets its plump cockles from the Galician region of Spain.

Conservas de Cambados Razor Clams ($15)

These Spanish clams are harvested off of western Spain and carefully hand-packed in oil.

④ Ramón Peña Octopus in Paprika Sauce ($12)

On the lower end of Ramón Peña's wares, tender hunks of octopus get a hit of heat from paprika.

Santa Catarina Tuna Fillets in Organic Olive Oil ($9)

Awarded the most sustainable canned tuna in the world by Greenpeace, these fleshy skipjack fillets from the Azores islands were a hit.

Jacques Gonidec Sardines in Onion Sauce ($9)

These sardines from the multigenerational Gonidec family in Concarneau, France, are an easy swap for Trabocchi's pasta.

Jose Gourmet Mackerel Fillets in Olive Oil ($12)

Portuguese illustrators are commissioned to design each box for these masterfully preserved fish.