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California Dungeness Crab Season Is Delayed Until at Least the Week of Christmas

Due to the risk of humpback whales and endangered sea turtles being caught in fishing equipment, California’s commercial Dungeness crab season has been delayed again

A pile of crab.
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife announced a third delay to the start of the commercial crabbing season.
Lauren Saria is the editor of Eater SF and has been writing about food, drinks, and restaurants for more than a decade.

On Thursday, December 7, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife announced a third delay to the start of the 2023-2024 commercial crabbing season meaning diners will have to wait until at least the new year for the local delicacy. The delay comes as a result of humpback whales and endangered Pacific leatherback sea turtles in the waters off the coast; both animals can become entangled in fishing gear and, according to the CDFW, at least one sea turtle became entangled in “commercial Dungeness crab fishing gear lost in a previous season.” The department expects to complete its next risk assessment on December 21.

In the meantime, recreational crab trapping will open up in the northernmost part of the California coast on December 16, and recreational crabbing by other means — including hoop nets and crab snares — continues to be allowed despite the other ongoing restrictions. San Francisco residents can also buy Dungeness crab caught in other locales at local markets including Alioto-Lazio Fish Company, Billingsgate, and Sun Fat Seafood Co.

Boichik Bagels is now open in Santa Clara

Boichik Bagels continues its conquest of the Bay Area with a new location at 2050 Wyatt Drive in Santa Clara. The shop opened on Thursday, December 7, the Mercury News reports, and is the “largest retail shop to date” to come from Boichik owner Emily Winston. Look for 15 types of bagels, smoked salmon, and whitefish salad on the menu.

Sushi by Scratch opens in Healdsburg

Sushi by Scratch, a chain of sushi restaurants with locations across the country and in Canada, opened its first Northern California outpost in Healdsburg on December 1. SFGATE reports it's located “within a private room inside The Matheson” and only offers “three reservation slots, at 4 p.m., 6:15 p.m., and 8:30 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday.”

Asian restaurant headed to Bernal Heights

Mission Local reports that a new restaurant and bar called the Rabbit Hole will take over the former Old Devil Moon space in Bernal Heights. It comes from Joan McCollom who was “born and raised in Los Angeles after her mother immigrated from Taiwan.” McCollom plans to offer dishes including youtiao, sometimes called Chinese doughnuts, and a full bar.