Coming Sunday, March 10, 2013: Chefs Collaborative Trash Fish Dinner – UPDATED

Chefs Collaborative Trash Fish Dinner, Sunday, March, 10, 2013The following is a media release from Chefs Collaborative regarding their upcoming Trash Fish Dinner. Two of the chefs from the Rhode Island network, Jake Rojas of Tallulah on Thames and Derek Wagner of Nick’s on Broadway, are participating, along with a group of some of New England’s best. Tickets are now available for this multi-course New England seafood dinner. Purchase them at

Melissa Kogut, Executive Director | Chefs Collaborative
617-236-5286 | 617-970-5613 (cell) |

Trash Fish Dinner
The Best New England Seafood You’ve Never Tried

Chefs Collaborative, a national chef network that’s changing the sustainable food landscape using the power of connections, education and responsible buying decisions, is hosting the first-ever Trash Fish Dinner at the Cambridge, MA restaurant Area Four on March 10, 2013.

The dinner was conceived of, and is being led by, by eight New England chefs from the Boston area, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire. The dinner will feature lesser-known Atlantic fish species, including species such as the sea robin, dogfish, and hake. These fish have traditionally been left off the menu by chefs, are often discarded by fishermen as bycatch, and are virtually unknown to the general public.

Included in the evening is also a special short talk about the future of sustainable seafood from Barton Seaver, Sustainability Fellow in Residence at the New England Aquarium and National Geographic Society Fellow.

With the recent news about the near collapse of New England groundfish fisheries, the Trash Fish Dinner is well timed. Chefs Collaborative Executive Director Melissa Kogut remarked that “the overfishing of popular species such as cod and other groundfish has reached a critical tipping point in New England. With Chefs Collaborative’s Trash Fish Dinner, we hope to open up a conversation about the need to develop new fishing methods and target new species.”

Event Details:

Chefs Cooking:

  • Rich Garcia: Executive Chef, 606 Congress – Boston, MA
  • Drew Hedlund: Executive Chef, Fleet Landing Restaurant & Bar – Charleston, SC
  • Larry Leibowitz: Culinary Director for Guckenheimer
  • Michael Leviton: Chef/Owner, Lumiere – Newton, MA and Area Four – Cambridge, MA
  • Evan Mallett: Chef/Owner, Black Trumpet Bistro – Portsmouth, NH
  • Mary Reilly: Chef/Owner, Enzo Restaurant and Bar – Newburyport, MA
  • Jake Rojas: Chef/Owner, Tallulah on Thames – Newport, RI
  • Michael Scelfo: Executive Chef, Russell House Tavern – Cambridge, MA
  • Derek Wagner: Chef/Owner, Nick’s On Broadway – Providence, RI

The chefs involved with the Dinner are also on a mission to change public perception of these so-called “trash fish” – for the sake of the environment, fishermen, and continued innovation in this industry. 606 Congress Executive Chef Rich Garcia commented, “if one thing should be on the red list, the fishermen should be . . . we’ve just been so used to what’s always been sold, but we’ve got this abundance of fish with amazing textures and flavors.”

UPDATE: Chefs Collaborative Board Chair Chef Michael Leviton, host of the Trash Fish Dinner at his restaurant Area Four, has written an editorial piece “Are Trash Fish the Answer?” for The Huffington Post. Chef Rich Garcia of 606 Congress, also a Trash Fish Dinner participant wrote a post on his site, “Trash Fish to Cash Fish,” about his experience in Washington D.C. with the Massachusetts Congressional delegation during the Environmental Defense Fund National Outreach Day.

2 thoughts on “Coming Sunday, March 10, 2013: Chefs Collaborative Trash Fish Dinner – UPDATED

  • Hake is not trash fish. It’s like a mild cod that never has a tinge of iodine, thick flakes, excellent for being part of a sauce and rice dish. I lived in West Africa for awhile, and could never figure out what the delicious “cujolly” the fisherman brought to the market would be called here. It was hake.

  • Sheila, good to hear you’re a hake lover. Unfortunately, not many people have the same perception of hake or even know it’s a kind of fish! This is true with a number of north Atlantic fish. Many breeds are treated like “trash” by fishermen because they can’t get good money for it. A lot is either frozen and sent abroad or just discarded by the fishermen. The Chefs Collaborative are trying to raise awareness about fish like hake, fish that are regarded as “trash” by the fishermen and fishmongers that catch and sell it. We don’t think it’s “trash” either. Our board chair has written a good piece on this here:

    Thank you for reading.

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