Smoked salmon is a year-round party staple, but during December it works overtime, doubling as a popular holiday gift. We canvassed the market for the best North American cold-smoked salmon available in stores or by mail-order. The F&W staff couldn't get enough of these four.
Max & Me Atlantic Smoked Salmon
staff comment "Silky, with well-balanced smokiness."
interesting bite To deepen the flavor, co-owner Max Hansen smokes the salmon over a mixture of hardwood and fruitwood.
215-766-3439; $24 per pound.
Perona Farms Smoked Atlantic Salmon
staff comment "Buttery, fatty and lush."
interesting bite Perona Farms gets its fish from Canada's Bay of Fundy, where the enormous tides act as a natural water purifier.
800-750-6190; $22 per pound.