Hoboken: July 2007 Archives

Don't Buy Fish On Mondays?


I was getting off the PATH train yesterday when a local restaurant had people handing out flyers & promoting 1/2 priced sushi on Monday nights. I cringed when I saw that. I knew full well never to order fish on a Monday.

There certainly are places you can dine that will have excellent fresh fish every day of the week, because they are taking the extra steps necessary. Restaurants that order "Day Boat" fish, are those boats that get the fish the same day and sell it to restaurants. There's also "Top Haul" which are the fish recently caught by non-day boat trawlers (for deeper sea varities like Tuna and Swordfish), and refers to those fish which sit at the top of the haul in the boats hold. Flash-freezing is a new technique by boats which they catch the fish, freeze it on the boat, and it keeps the fish fresher, longer. Only problem is that this is good for certain types of fish, and not great with others.

Usually there is a premium price tag associated with this, and would be found at the three to four star restaurants - not the restaurants selling sushi at half price.070307.jpg

Anthony Bourdain wrote In "Kitchen confidential", his tell-all memoir of working in NYC kitchens:

"You walk into a nice two-star place in Tribeca on a sleepy Monday evening and you see they're running a delicious-sounding special of Yellowfin Tuna, Braised Fennel, Confit Tomatoes and a Safron Sauce. Why not go for it? Here are the two words that should leap out at you when you navigate the menu: 'Monday' and 'Special'.

"Here's how it works: The chef of this fine restaurant orders his fish on Thursday for delivery Friday morning. He's ordering a pretty good amount of it, too, as he's not getting another delivery until Monday Morning. All right, some seafood purveyors make Saturday deliveries, but the market is closed Friday night. It's the same fish from Thursday!


"Why doesn't he throw the left-over tuna out? The guy can get deliveries on Monday, right? Sure, he can ... but what is preventing his seafood purveyor from thinking exactly the same way? The seafood vendor is emptying out his refrigerator too! But the Fulton Street fish market is open on Monday morning, you say!! He can get fresh! I've been to the Fulton Street market at three o'clock on Monday morning, friends, and believe me, it does not inspire confidence."

Certainly refrigeration of fish is important, but Anthony also described how the fish is in a fridge that is packed with other foods over the weekend. The refrigerator is opened and closed countless times while the kitchen workers are grabbing items from it - which harms the fresh fish.

Even if a restaurant is getting a fresh fish delivery on Monday, you know that they are trying to get rid of old inventory over new inventory. I'd be very squeamish about ordering fish on a Monday in New York City, let alone Hoboken.

But for some people their wallets come ahead of their health.

What do you think? Would you order fish on a Monday in Hoboken?

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This page is a archive of entries in the Hoboken category from July 2007.

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