Photos by Marisol Armendariz
Famed fisherman Edgar Hansen and Chef Hai Fitzgerald, owner of “Thyme & Seasons” restaurant in Bountiful, Utah, were at Rexburg’s Broulim’s Sept. 22 to promote the grocery store’s “Off the Hook & Onto Your Plate” seafood sale.
Edgar Hansen, a lifetime fisherman, can be seen on the Discovery Channel’s show “The Deadliest Catch” as the deck boss of The Northwestern, a crab-fishing vessel. He works alongside his brother, Captain Sig Hansen.
“We’re real. What you see is what you get. Some of the boats on the show might Hollywood some stuff up. We don’t dock anything up, we just are who we are,” Hansen said.
Some students planned time out of their weekend schedules to come and meet Hansen.
“It’s like family time; we would go and watch the show together. I came home from school one semester and they’re watching the show. I started watching it too, and it was awesome. We’ve really enjoyed it for a long time,” said Darcie Smart, a senior studying microbiology. “He’s got a really good sense of humor in the good times and bad times, so it’s fun to watch him. He’s very nice in person as well.”
Some students just happened to be at the right place and at the right time, and found out about the star from “Deadliest Catch” while they did their grocery shopping.
“It’s pretty cool, because I love that show,” said Josh Pixton, a sophomore studying nursing.
Chef Hai Fitzgerald was also at Broulim’s to promote its seafood.
“He helps us look at our recipes, because we’re ‘Broulim’s Fresh Foods,’ so everything is just fresh. I bring him in about twice a year,” said Robert Broulim, son of Dick Broulim the owner of Broulim’s.
Fitzgerald said he does not run his restaurant like other restaurants. He makes sure each customer has a personal dining experience when they come into his restaurant. He handles everything and the food is made from scratch.
“I grew up in a four-star French restaurant. I also grew up as Asian. I also grew up as a rice farmer. Everything I use, I have already either raised it, caught it, or processed it,” Fitzgerald said.
Fitzgerald said because his gourmet restaurant is attracting so many customers, he is exploring his options for the future of his business.
“We’re expanding, but not adding restaurants. It’s impossible to do restaurants, because I have yet to find a clone of myself,” Fitzgerald said. “We are planning to do a presentation to Costco coming up this week. We’re planning to expand our meat processing center, our rice and our wet-packaging center, and we’re planning to do a full-sized gluten-free bakery.”
Fitzgerald’s restaurant began with only one menu item, but has since expanded into a thriving business.
“Thyme & Seasons is a restaurant, first and foremost. It is a spice and seasonings company, it is a culinary school, and it is an art gallery,” Fitzgerald said.