Tuesday, 3 November 2009

When The Wind Blows

Fishmongers have to face the major problem of a lack of quality fish when the weather is bad. I see many mongers quality fall through the floor when bad weather is about as they feel they have to continue to offer every product all of the time. I embrace these situations as it allows me to restrict my fare to a selection of high quality sourced species. I recall that on my one and only trip to Borough Market a couple of years ago I saw the perfect example of this. The mentioned weekend had been towards the end of a week of some countrywide gales and quality fish was critically short. A fishmonger in the centre of Borough, whose name I am unaware, had a huge selection of species with much interest and many sales. The quality was awful. Apart from one piece of tuna there was not an item I would have allowed on my counter. Walking out of the market rather bemused and disappointed I noticed a fishmonger called Applebee’s. I popped in and introduced myself and was pleasantly greeted with a small selection of great quality. Not a chance were they going to compromise their standards for market tourist trade.

Remember that our fish are not kept in fields with fences penning them in. When bad weather is about be prepared to change your menu as many fish will not be available. Also be prepared to be offered low quality if you visit a shop that puts profit over pride. I am not ashamed to say I only had 22 species (including each shellfish and prawn) for sale today. I am, however, proud to say I sold them all.

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