Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Is it Fresh Cut Fish or Freshly Cut Fish?

I guess it’s just my anal nature but lately a TV ad has been making me nuts. Have you ever had one of those times when a word or little bit of grammar trips a switch in your mind and you wonder about it. Incessantly. Maybe that’s good advertising.

OK, here’s what I’m getting at…Sizzler, a chain of steakhouse type of restaurants mostly in the West, has a new advertising campaign—Fresh Cut Fish.
No problem, right? “Fresh Cut Fish”. Here’s what’s going through my mind though—does anyone really believe that Sizzler is serving “fresh” fish? To me “fresh fish” is fish that was just caught and hasn’t been frozen. I doubt that they’ve got someone down at the local pond or river tossing in lures and bait for fresh salmon and trout. My assumption is that it’s frozen. And I doubt that there's some guy in the back merrily filleting trout that were flown in fresh from Montana or Alaska streams this morning.

Most restaurants, especially lower end restaurants, use predominately frozen ingredients. Or at minimum, from my days long, long ago cooking at the grill of a now defunct steak chain, it comes refrigerated and vacuum packed in individual portions.

So what is “fresh cut fish”? Is it fresh fish that’s been cut to portion size? Or is it fish that has been freshly cut--cut when it comes off the broiler or out of the oven hence earning the title of "fresh cut"?

(From Sizzler's website)

And it’s driving me nuts.

Why should I care? I’m not going to go there and try the “fresh cut fish”. But I’m curious as to what exactly it is. How much did Sizzler have to pay for some 21st century Don Draper clone to come up with this snazzy twist of phrase? They also advertise “fresh cut tri-tip” by the way. If I cook fish or tri-tip and then cut it, it’s now “fresh cut”, right?

But there are just some things that drive me nuts. And this is one of them.

Now this is about as nonsensical and trite of a blogpost that could conceivably be written (although I’ve come across far worse examples). It kind of lends the truth to this poster, doesn’t it?


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