Polydactylus sexfilis


Pacific threadfin, Hawaiian moi

Barbure ou capitaine


Nanyo-Agonashi, Tsubamekonoshiro

Barbudo seis barbas, Pez barbita del pacifico


Historically, in Hawaii moi was a delicacy reserved for male royalty; commoners caught eating the fish faced severe punishment. Hence moi’s unofficial title as “the fish of kings.” While Westernization ended the prohibition on moi, access to the fish was limited due to depletion of the wild stock. Stock-enhancement programs through the 1990s rebuilt the sport fishery for moi; commercial fishing is still virtually nonexistent. However, more people in Hawaii and on the mainland are enjoying this fish today, thanks to aquaculture operations. Hawaii’s Oceanic Institute provides the stock for moi farmers throughout the state who market the fish at sizes of 3/4 to 1 1/2 pounds. The primary aquaculture operation in Hawaii raises moi in open-ocean, submerged cages. Smaller-scale farmers use seawater tanks, raceways or ponds for raising the fish. Farmed moi are harvested, iced and delivered within hours to domestic (Hawaii and mainland United States) and international markets.


Moi flesh is white to light gray and cooks up white. The rich, mild-flavored meat is moist, tender and flaky.


Calories: 122
Fat Calories: 37
Total Fat: 4.1 g
Saturated Fat: 1.4 g
Cholesterol: 69 mg
Sodium: 73 mg
Protein: 21.1 g
Omega 3: N/A


Moi has a relatively high oil content that keeps the meat moist in a variety of preparation methods. Steam or bake whole fish or sear fillets, skin-side down, in a pan. Moi can also be grilled, broiled or pan fried and served raw as sashimi. The oil in the flesh makes smoking an option as well.


Black sea bass, Hybrid striped bass