Patagonian Toothfish for lunch? [From Reveries]

Or, as it's better known today, Chilean Sea Bass.


Renamed in 1977 by marketeer Lee Lantz, who discovered it in Valparaiso, Chile, and found it to have "texture similar to Atlantic cod’s, the richness of tuna, the innocuous mild flavor of a flounder",with "fat content (that) made it feel almost buttery in the mouth".

He quickly figured that its taste would appeal to Americans and branded it "Chilean Sea Bass", even though it doesn't belong to the bass family of fish!

The recent study on more people voting for Hillary Clinton if she used her maiden name and Kahn and Miller's paper on the effectiveness of non-descriptive brand names delineate the importance of choosing evocative brand names. Or would you rather have a Patagonian Toothfish for lunch?!

Full story at Reveries Magazine


  1. cohn said

    For my 16th anniversary dinner in Florida, my wife and I were offered a selection of New England Cod, Red Snapper and their speciality – Chilean Sea Bass!

    I don’t think I would have chosen the Chilean Sea Bass had I been offered it under its original name.

  2. Reynold said

    I think actors understand this really well – witness the profusion of evocative stage names that the profession utilizes.

    African dictators have been known to do this as well. Joseph Desire Mobutu, who ruled Zaire (now Congo) for 32 years, changed his name to Mobutu Sese Seko Kuku Ngbendu Wa Za Banga (“The all-powerful warrior who, because of his endurance and inflexible will to win, will go from conquest to conquest, leaving fire in his wake”).

    Names have power.

  3. […] Another one for the collection of great product names. […]

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