How A Philosophy Degree Prepared a Fishmonger (Eater DC)

M.J. Gimbar wakes up early with the fishermen, but ends the night as late as chefs. Keeping five restaurants and one market in D.C. stocked with fresh seafood requires Gimbar’s careful orchestration of rotating daily menus, tracking obscure species around the world, and even monitoring the weather.

Like a skit fresh out of Portlandia, Gimbar actually does know the story behind every fish served up at BlackSalt, Pearl Dive, the Republic, and other group restaurants. He even uses technology so guests too can learn more about the food they eat, through a simple scan of a smartphone while shopping in the BlackSalt Fish Market.

Gimbar’s behind-the-scenes role in the restaurant business means facing an endless stream of problems, from exotic requests to frozen Canadian waters. As he puts it, this unpredictable job is “not like selling VCR’s” from a factory. Yet he stopped for a break this month to tell Eater about his job organizing fish from boat to plate during winter, the seafood he never eats, and more:

MJ Gimbar
Fishmonger MJ Gimbar (Photo: Black Restaurant Group)

How does a typical day look for you—as fishmonger for the five Black Group restaurants including one fish market?


Continue reading this article on the Eater DC website, published March 17, 2015. 


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