The gilt-head (sea) bream (Sparus aurata), called the Orata in antiquity and Italy and Spain today, is a fish of the bream family Sparidae found in the Mediterranean Sea and the eastern coastal regions of the North Atlantic Ocean. It commonly reaches about 35 centimetres (1.15 ft) in length, but may reach 70 cm (2.3 ft) and weigh up to about 7.36 kilograms (16.2 lb).
The gilt-head bream is generally considered the best-tasting of the breams. It is the single species of the genus Sparus – the Latin name for this fish – which has given the whole family of Sparidae its name. Its specific name, aurata, derives from the gold bar marking between its eyes.
The genome of the species was released in 2018, where the authors detected fast evolution of ovary-biased genes likely resulting from the peculiar reproduction mode of the species.