The answer is not a simple “fish is a delicacy, but we pay for it,” the restaurant chain said in a statement to Business Insider.
But the answer, for some, is a little more complicated.
For starters, the menu doesn’t list fish as part of its “main courses” menu.
Instead, it only lists the items listed on its fish bowl menu, which includes chicken, crab, salmon, tuna, and sushi.
So, customers who want to add fish into their dinner plan have to order the items separately.
According to a Business Insider article, some restaurants have started charging for the “fish bowl” items, such as the crab sandwich, while others have not.
Some restaurants have even introduced a separate fee to cover the cost of the fish bowl items.
In fact, according to the restaurant company, its fish bowls and fish bowl sandwiches are still being served at restaurants, which are exempt from the rule.
But what is the catch with these fish bowls?
For starters (and it’s a big but), the restaurant says they are made with “premium” fish, such a tuna, crab or shrimp.
So while you’re paying for a piece of fish, the fish isn’t a “special” item.
So how does the restaurant know if a particular fish is a premium item?
According to the company, they use “an industry-leading analysis that analyzes the relative prices of fish items to compare the cost per serving to comparable items.”
So if you order a shrimp at a restaurant and you’re only going to eat a handful of shrimp, the shrimp should be a premium fish.
If you order the shrimp and order the fish and order both, then it’s probably not a premium.
But that doesn’t mean it’s free.
According to a restaurant spokesperson, the restaurant’s fish bowls are only “a few percent” of the total menu price.
They’re just one part of a larger menu.
So while you might be paying for the shrimp, it might not be worth paying extra for the fish because it’s not a “premier” item, the spokesperson added.
To make matters even worse, the chain says you can add fish onto your meal plan at any time, even if you haven’t ordered fish yet.
But this service, which was first introduced in 2015, is only available to restaurants in the Greater New York area.
It only applies to New York City.
For more from our food series, read: