“Fish tastes good every day, and it’s really healthy too”

An interview with Lars Kohlhagen, chef at the restaurant Oberdeck in the Seeperle in Wismar

Lars Kohlhagen has been head chef at the Oberdeck Restaurant in the Seeperle in Wismar for almost ten years. He started his career at Teschow Castle in Teterow, later worked for some time in Baden-Württemberg and finally returned to Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. Now he tells us why we should definitely eat fish.

Mr Kohlhagen, which fish are actually healthier, high-fat or low-fat?

Every fish is very healthy. Fish are easily digestible and satisfy well without becoming fat. This is mainly due to the high-quality protein. But they are also full of other valuable substances, such as vitamin D or trace elements such as selenium and – very important: iodine. High-fat sea fish from the Baltic Sea, such as herring and mackerel, are also rich in omega-3 fatty acids. However, if you don’t tolerate fatty fish so well, you can simply order local garfish, cod or local trout. These are very healthy, low-fat fish. Fish from our lakes also generally has less fat.

Lars Kohlhagen - Chef de Cuisine at Restaurant Oberdeck in Wismar © TMV

Lars Kohlhagen – Chef de Cuisine at Restaurant Oberdeck in Wismar © TMV

Why do omega-3 fatty acids have such a good reputation?

Because they can prevent diseases of the cardiovascular system and thus prevent a heart attack or stroke. In addition, according to recent studies, these valuable fatty acids also help in the development of the brain and protect against Alzheimer’s disease. Anyone who regularly eats fish can therefore increase their mental performance. This is ensured by two fatty acids with rather complicated names that do not necessarily have to be remembered: docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA).


The seasonal calendar for fishing in Germany

The seasonal calendar for fishing © TMV/Jana Kreisl

How often should one eat fish?

The official recommendation is once or twice a week, but of course we disagree. Fish can be eaten very well every day – there are so many delicious variations: boiled, fried, smoked, steamed, as a fine lunch or rather rustic on the hand in a roll. Fish simply always tastes good, and fish is always in season.

Fresh served fish on a plate.

Fresh served fish © TMV/pocha.de

What do you answer a person who says that he does not like fish?

Very simple: If you don’t like fish, in my opinion, you have never eaten good fish. I suggest that I personally prepare a so-called beginner’s fish for him in our open show kitchen on the upper deck, cod for example, because it tastes rather neutral. We also fillet so well that our fish really has no bones left. Many people are afraid of that too.

Fresh fish rolls are available in Altefähr on the island of Rügen, for example. Fish roll sale directly at the harbour.

Fresh fish sandwiches are available in many places in M-V © TMV/pocha.de

How can you tell that fish is fresh?

With us in the restaurant you can simply rely on that. We know our suppliers, choose them very carefully. Apart from that: A fish must have clear eyes. And if you press your finger into the meat, there must be no dent afterwards. But most importantly: fish must smell as fresh as the water.

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