Rigby’s Encyclopaedia of the Herring

A work in progress with no end in sight


Somewhere between the modern bloater and the golden herring, popular in the Mediterranean – particularly in Italy


Like the golden herring, this is somewhere between the red herring and the modern bloater. It’s more heavily salted than a bloater, but only very lightly cold-smoked, so it retains its silver gleam. Also, like the golden herring, it is something primarily exported to Southern Europe.

Great Yarmouth’s HS Fishing Company, which sadly closed in 2018, used to produce it. One of the firm’s 1990s promotional leaflets includes the following suggestions:


Serve cold without cooking by removing the skin and bones and dressing with a little olive oil or parsley butter. Accompany with slices of crisp apple soaked in lemon juice and crusty fresh warm bread.


After removing the skin and bone lightly grill the silver herring, if possible over charcoal. Serve with a fresh green salad, crusty bread and a glass of ice-cold red wine.


A traditional recipe from the mountains of Northern Italy. Serve cold, without cooking after having removed the head, tail and skin. Serve with boiled beans and a touch of olive oil and a few early potatoes.