Sep 19 2013

Small fish bring big menu opportunities

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Despite their reputation as oily, smelly, fatty and usually packed in a tin, there’s lot to like about anchovies, sardines and smelt. They’re extremely flavorful, loaded with healthy omega-3s and abundant in our oceans. And while small fish are found most often on menus in Caesar salads, atop pizzas or inside sushi rolls, lately more chefs are using them in appetizers or entrees.

According to Datassential MenuTrends, 21 percent of all restaurant menus feature at least one variety of small fish, an increase of 2 percent since 2009. They can be found most often at fine-dining restaurants, where 36 percent of menus feature a small fish. Anchovies, appearing on 19 percent of menus, are the most common small fish offered by restaurants.

Their rarity on menus, along with and their distinct flavor, is precisely why chef Joe Realmuto loves to put anchovies, sardines and smelts on the menu at Nick & Toni’s East Hampton and Nick & Toni’s Café in New York City.

Read the full article here.

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