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September 2, 2014

Domino’s Apologizes to Alaska – Is it Enough?

halibutjeanne

BREAKING: The War on Halibut is heating up. Domino’s Pizza has sent an apology for offense to the state of Alaska, and the fishing industry as a whole over their new “Powered by Pizza” ad campaign that disparages Alaska’s beloved halibut.

The furor in Alaska began whenThe Mudflats weighed in (HERE) after seeing the Domino’s TV commercial which claims “no one ever had a world-changing idea over halibut. No way,” as an actor spits halibut out of his mouth and on to the plate in disgust.

Halibut

Alaskans across the board were angered by the slight to our tasty and beloved fish which sustains jobs, promotes tourism, supports local charter businesses, and yes… appears on pizzas in our great state.

We contacted Domino’s Pizza, asking for a comment about our story. A response came quickly.

Thanks for sending this along. I’ve shared this with our marketing team and ad agency as well.

In no way did we intend to disparage the hard-working men and women in the fishing industry, nor the people of the great state of Alaska. It was simply meant to be a bit of humor in our commercial. We’re sincerely sorry for any offense we caused.

Tim McIntyre
Vice President, Communications
Domino’s Pizza LLC

While the quick response, and sentiment were appreciated, the fact still stands that right now, advertisements are blaring out of TV sets across the nation with the indisputable message: Pizza good – halibut bad.

U.S. Senator Mark Begich (D-AK) had his own statement on the ad asking the company not to be “halibut haters.” The following message appeared on his Facebook page.

Dear Domino’s Pizza:

What’s up with your claim, “no one ever had a world-changing idea while eating halibut”? Obviously you’ve never sampled fresh, delicious Alaska halibut and you definitely don’t know about halibut’s role in history. Halibut Olympia was served for dinner at the signing of the Constitution. Abraham Lincoln ate halibut tacos while writing the Gettysburg Address. Neil Armstrong took halibut into space and it was after President Regan shared a meal of deep-fried halibut with Mikhail Gorbachev that the Berlin Wall finally came down.

Up here in Alaska our fishermen, hockey players, truckers, North Slope workers, farmers, miners, snowboarders and world class cross country skiers always eat fresh, delicious, Alaska halibut when they think about changing the world. So Domino’s, don’t be a halibut-hater. We would be happy to share our halibut recipes with you. Alaskans, help me out and share your fave halibut recipes on this page.

I was a guest tonight on The Shannyn Moore Show here in Anchorage tonight to talk about “Halibutgate.” Shannyn, a former commercial fisherman, hails from Homer, Alaska, “The Halibut Fishing Capital of the World.” Needless to say, she felt quite strongly about the issue.

halibutshannyn

Maybe it’s because we have no professional sports teams up here, but all Alaskans are proud members of Team Fish, and nobody disses our team. We called for Domino’s to do the right thing and “pull down this ad!” (Hey, if they could do it with the wall, they can surely do it for a poor unjustly maligned fish.)

One Mudflats reader noted: “Can you imagine a person spitting out halibut with such a look of disgust? Me neither …. Morons!”

The response to the show was intense. A caller noted that the Bible never talked about pizza, but it sure talked about fish. Many emails and calls came in. Here’s what some had to say on Twitter.

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Those who want to tweet at Domino’s to ask that they pull their attack ad on halibut can tweet them @Dominos (please use #PoweredByHalibut) or find them on Facebook HERE.

Domino’s has twelve locations here in the great land in Fairbanks, and the coastal fishing communities of Juneau, Anchorage, and Kodiak. The ads continue to run as the nation is misled, and turned against one of the healthiest foods on the planet. If halibut had hands, they’d be on their hips about now. The scowl is already there.

Domino’s, Alaskans have nothing against pizza. We really don’t. But we’ve kind of had it up to the gills with corporations messing with our fish. First Exxon, then the Pebble Partnership, and now… you?

End this war.

Comments

comments

Comments
47 Responses to “Domino’s Apologizes to Alaska – Is it Enough?”
  1. Janet says:

    Oh, I’m prepared to get skewered. But I am so fucking sick and tired of the calls for an apology every time someone’s sensibilities get offended. Grow up. Put on your “big boy” pants and move the hell on.

  2. Julie says:

    Domino’s should not only publicly apologize, it would be a great idea for them to shoot a commercial showing how their toppings change in different states – with some states actually HAVING fish on their pizza! That way, it wouldn’t just be an empty apology, but showing how valuable halibut actually is to so many Americans.

  3. Breadbaker says:

    I’ve had wonderful pizza in Rome and at the entrance to Pompeii. I can actually make a pretty decent one myself. Dominos, not so much.

    But there’s nothing quite like catching a halibut, shooting it and then eating it. If that’s not brain food, you have no brains.

    • benlomond2 says:

      hhhhmmmm .. Pizza in Roma !!! it was-a soo good !! 180 degrees from New York style pizza, where you have to fold it length-wise, dripping with sauce…. Grand dad on mother’s side had a resteraunt in Groton, Conn… made a mean pizza…. however mom always baked fish,, yyuuucchh! so don’t eat cooked fish, but clams, lobster shrimp etc.. I’m all over it! Saw the Domino’s commerical finally.. neh!! uuuhhh! think you could tie the Lake Lucille Fish with the residents thereof brain power ??

  4. beth. says:

    Let’s see…
    In no way did we intend to disparage the hard-working men and women in the [fill in the blank] industry, nor the people of the great state of [fill in the blank]. It was simply meant to be a bit of humor in our commercial. We’re sincerely sorry for any offense we caused.

    Yuppers, sounds exactly like the totally non-specific (so-called) ‘apologies’ lawmakers send out when responding to ticked-off constituents; NOTHING in the “apology” indicates they even know what it is they’re apologizing for. Could’ve been pecan/Georgia, cheese/Wisconsin. wine/California, potato/Idaho, or any other combination of industry/state dropped into those particular blanks of the generic “respond” form… IMHO, the ‘apology’ is, therefore, a FAIL.

    Seems to me Domino’s had a super brain phart when it conceived of, made, ran –and continues to run– the ad, but it had a truly massive blow out of epic proportions when it attempted to “apologize” for its utter lack of judgment with the ginormous insult of the condescending “fill in the blank” apology — as if AKM, Alaskans, and people, in general, aren’t smart enough to know when they’re being taken for a bunch of half-wit rubes. Just sayin’. beth.

  5. Blooper says:

    Well as an Alaskan, what can I say, it’s all already been said! :-_) But I agree that Dominoes is in no place to put down other, more wholesome food as ‘disgusting’, and I will be very hesitant to ever order from them again unless they atone and come out with a halibut pizza (probably won’t happen).

    Speaking of which, the Moose’s Tooth Brewpub in Anchorage used to make the most wonderful, out of this world Halibut Pizza that would put anything Dominoes makes to shame. It’s too bad it’s not on the menu anymore as I think Halibut got too expensive. Maybe they should come out with a pizza special called the ‘Just Say DomiNO’ special. And of course add Halibut as the main topping. ;-)

  6. Zyxomma says:

    I’m vegan, so I don’t partake. I’ve never had halibut, and I had Dominos pizza exactly once, hold the cheese. It was totally lousy (I had no choice in the matter on that Florida vacation). If I couldn’t get the food I do eat, and were given a choice between Dominos and fresh Alaskan halibut, I’d probably eat the fish. I certainly would not eat the sub-par pizza.

  7. leenie17 says:

    Please don’t throw anything in my direction when I admit that I’m not a lover of halibut, or most fish for that matter, but I have family members who would sell their own children (or at least rent them out cheaply) for some fresh Alaskan halibut.

    I DO, however, LOVE me some pizza and, as a born and bred Noo Yawkah, I must say that nothing ever came out of a Domino’s restaurant (and I use that term loosely) that in any way resembles real pizza.

    (And, yes, I did try halibut several different ways while in Alaska a few years ago!)

    • Alaska Pi says:

      Nobody would throw anything at you , neighbor, unless maybe you spit your food out all over the table to register your personal taste. That might call for something.
      One is totally free not to like halibut. Or broccoli or pizza or whatever.

      One is also free to make doofus non-funny commercials equating creativity with ingestion of pretend pizza and diss halibut.
      Sometimes, with the right touch , something that wacked might fly- this one didn’t.

      • mike from iowa says:

        You forgot liver! Have never knowingly ate halibut. Am guilty of knowingly eating stuff that was sold as pizza,but unidentified except as lab samples. Jenos used to make a box pizza,which is the first and most favorite memory of pizza. Had a big can of sauce,a packet of dry crust mix and a little packet of yummy herbs. Didn’t need cheese. I usually added some hamburger and baked it in a rectangular cookie pan.

        • COalmostNative says:

          You can still buy their frozen pizza rolls ;-)

        • leenie17 says:

          Oh Mikey! Real NY pizza is a work of art that is thin-crusted and just crisp enough that it cracks when you fold it (lengthwise, of course). There needs to be a lot of cheese, a generous portion of oregano and enough oil to drip off the little point onto the paper plate.

          I grew up in a house where my mother served spaghetti topped with tomato soup for dinner (my sisters and I celebrated mightily when Ragu first became available in grocery stores!), so real pizza with REAL Italian tomato sauce was a treat to be cherished and savored down to the last tiny string of melted mozzarella stuck to the pizza box.

          My niece and I decided a few years ago that all other imitators are heretofore to be referred to as ‘pizza-like food product’.

          • Elsie says:

            Leenie, that reminds me of my daughter’s Swedish ex-boyfriend who ate HIS spaghetti with catsup on it. Yuck! But even with that, if you put a fine, fresh Alaskan halibut-filled taco in front of the same guy, he’d happily devour it in a heartbeat, and then ask for more.

            Domino’s — Yuck… It’s like spaghetti with catsup on it served on a some old saucer as compared to a real Italian’s fabulously homemade spaghetti and “meat-ta-balls”!

            Viva Alaskan halibut!! And bless all the Alaskans who fish, sell, and eat halibut and salmon, fresh from the bounty of the Alaskan waters.

      • COalmostNative says:

        Yes, one is free to like or not like halibut (I’m in the former group), and like or not like pizza…

        So- I don’t like the ad, and definintely don’t like what Domino’s choses to call “pizza” >:(

  8. aeroentropy says:

    And, as I load this page to read the whole story, what advertisement do I find just below the Mudflats banner? You guessed it, Domino’s Pizza, Order any 2 Medium 2-Topping Pizzas $5.99 each. Order Online. WTF.

  9. mag the mick says:

    Instead of dwelling on the negativity, let’s all take a few moments of calm and visualize:

    Halibut Olympia (for you uninitiated, it is a hunk of halibut marinated in white wine, then baked in a sauce of sour cream and mayonnaise, with bread crumbs on top.)

    Halibut tacos

    Caribbean fish stew made with halibut and Alaska shrimp. Recipe upon request.

    Beer-battered halibut and chips, with lots of good tarter sauce.

    Halibut chowder – halibut, bacon, potatoes, onions, and fresh cream

    Creamed halibut on toast – my mother’s favorite

    Halibut sandwiches on sourdough bread.

    I don’t know about you all, but I feel better already.

    • thatcrowwoman says:

      Many thanks, mag,
      that was a restorative and delicious break, there.

      Caribbean fish stew made with halibut and Alaska shrimp.
      Recipe upon request?
      Yes, please.
      tcw

      • mag the mick says:

        Dear Crow,

        I learned to cook this when I was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Honduras. The “North Coast” along the Caribbean is much different culturally, linguistically, and culinary-ly from the rest of the country. Over time I’ve had to adapt some of the ingredients, but it still works:

        Note – I don’t measure things!

        Put some olive oil in the bottom of a soup pot. Turn on the heat to about medium, and add one small chopped onion, two or three carrots, just in julienne strips, four large cloves of minced garlic and two or three stalks of celery. Stir them around just till they start getting relaxed and mellow. Then add one can of coconut milk and one jumbo can of V-8 juice. Bring the heat up a little, then add about a pound of shelled raw shrimp, and about a pound of fresh uncooked fish, cut into cubes. Halibut works wonderfully. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook until the shrimp is pink and the fish opaque. Right before you take it off the fire, add one handful of chopped fresh cilantro, the juice of one lime, and a big pinch of dried oregano. Give it all a good stir. Have ready enough hot cooked rice to fill the bowls of the people you are feeding. Ladle the hot soup over the cooked rice, and there you are. You can add diced ripe avocado to your soup bowl. I like it best served with fresh corn tortillas, but it is also great with fresh hot baguettes. Caribbean food in Honduras was known for its fresh, vibrant taste and not for anything hot and spicy. This soup takes about 30 minutes to prepare, more in you need time to chop and dice the ingredients. I love it. It is one of my mainstays.

    • Alaska Pi says:

      Halibut tacos! I live for halibut tacos!!!!!

    • COalmostNative says:

      Yum, yum, yum! If I promise not to drool- and bring my own fork- can I come over for dinner? Any of the above would be fine with me-

  10. juneaudream says:

    Tempest in a tidal pool..as all who know their healthy foods..know the score..and as to what grand ideas were designed, implemented..over chunks of smoky fish delights..Tribal Powered types, from ..oh..the last 17,000 years or so..That’s Who!! As to the ad agency who crafted/muckedup..on that..nerdly-urbans..who couldn’t find their *** with a fern-wad!

    • Carol says:

      juneaudream, I have to ask, can’t hold it in any longer. What do the .. mean?

      • mike from iowa says:

        I’m guessing its a three letter word-the same place nutters have their heads and/or can’t find with either hand. #SS or AS#.

      • juneaudream says:

        Walllll..says she..chewing a long strand of marsh-sedge..and ..considering..it could have been a discrete brit word, or..hmmm..yeah..that. Depends..y’know..depends…

  11. mike from iowa says:

    Under no circumstances would mike from iowa consider accepting an apology from Dominos,unless they agreed to send a yearly seven figure check to my favorite charity-me.

  12. thatcrowwoman says:

    Hey, AKM, I really appreciate the way you confront and deal with things that matter to you.
    And also, too, the community where you share it with all of us.

    Powered by Halibut graphic is a most excellent and powerful response in itself.
    But the Rest of the Story, with an eye to what humor may be found
    + visual aids!
    and comments!

    Inspiration. and Action.
    Look where the ripples reach.

    Do we call it Grass Roots when it’s fish-based?

    I’m starting to engage my school brain,
    but just realized my heart’s not in it yet.
    Many thanks for the reminder to engage my heart for the school year ahead, also, too.

    L’Shalom,
    thatcrowwoman

  13. John says:

    I’m impressed that it was an actual appology. Not the lame, “we applogize IF anyone was offended.”

    I say we graciously declare victory.

  14. jimzmum says:

    Went to their facebook page and registered my displeasure. Don’t eat Domino’s to begin with because of the owner’s choice to donate money to causes I can not support, but I still don’t like that commercial.

    • mike from iowa says:

      Long time no see,Hombre. :) How’s the forest and critters and yourownselfs?

    • thatcrowwoman says:

      *waving to jimzmum*
      was just thinking of you yesterday, dear one
      {{{{{jimzmum}}}}}

      • jimzmum says:

        I have been missing you guys. Life and all of that. Critters are good, though really odd. Kits have developed an affinity for the herb garden, except for the dill, which they dig out of the pots and throw on the patio. Same with impatiens. They caught their first frog a couple months ago, and that was a riot in a Clockwork Orange sort of way. Didn’t have the first clue as to what to do with it. Their parents were horribly embarassed, and finally the Mama stepped in and dispatched it.

        Two fawns like to graze on the day lilies, then nap under the bridge. I have explained that they are to tippy-tap over the bridge and to beware of trolls, but they ignore me. That bridge is coming out this fall. Himself has decreed it a menace to Grandgirlies, so out it must come. I think he just wants to rent something large and noisy and on tracks.

        We haven’t seen Orson in quite a long time, but the young hawk is still about on occasion.

        It is almost one year after the Big Bang (heart attack), and I am doing well. Had HALIBUT marinated in white wine and saffron last night. Dang! Good stuff. Saw it on television.

      • jimzmum says:

        I have been missing you guys. Life and all of that. Critters are good, though really odd. Kits have developed an affinity for the herb garden, except for the dill, which they dig out of the pots and throw on the patio. Same with impatiens. They caught their first frog a couple months ago, and that was a riot in a Clockwork Orange sort of way. Didn’t have the first clue as to what to do with it. Their parents were horribly embarassed, and finally the Mama stepped in and dispatched it.

        Two fawns like to graze on the day lilies, then nap under the bridge. I have explained that they are to tippy-tap over the bridge and to beware of trolls, but they ignore me. That bridge is coming out this fall. Himself has decreed it a menace to Grandgirlies, so out it must come. I think he just wants to rent something large and noisy and on tracks.

        We haven’t seen Orson in quite a long time, but the young hawk is still about on occasion.

        It is almost one year after the Big Bang (heart attack), and I am doing well. Had HALIBUT marinated in white wine and saffron last night. Dang! Good stuff. Saw it on television.

  15. Ripley in CT says:

    I heard this breaking news on the radio program last night, about the apology :-) Good for you for standing up to one of the bigs. If more people called out corporate American propaganda machines, who are shaping the eating habits of already nutritionally challenged people, perhaps there would be less disease and obesity and more health!

    I must confess: Every time I hear the word “halibut”, I can’t help but play the Monty Python skit where the man wants a Fish License. “He is AN halibut” And his name is Eric :-)

  16. Alaska Pi says:

    Well. I’m pretty unimpressed with the “apology”.
    I’m all for humor -life gets pretty grim without walloping helpings of humor stirred in- but all attempts at humor are not created equal, nor end up being funny.
    The irony of a fast food outfit dissing high quality, healthy food is worth a hoot or two but the actual bit of dissing? Nope. Not funny. Not at all. Actor behaving like a spoiled 5 year old spitting food out wasn’t funny at all.
    Spitting out halibut? As funny as a blowout at high speed on a gravel road, Dominos.

    Ms Elsie- Have 2 have-to-go! halibut taco places lined up for your next visit. Yum!

    • Elsie says:

      Roger that, Pi! And, if you ever get down here to Texas, we’ll head straight to the RILLY good BBQ and Mexican restaurants I know about!

      Ya know… when in Rome…..

  17. Elsie says:

    Years ago, I had the best fist tacos on the planet; they were made in an Anchorage restaurant with the freshest halibut known to mankind. I still remember them.

    Pizza? Whoever remembers the best pizza ever made? Me? Not so much. Domino’s…definitely not so much.

    What I remember is that Domino’s original owner, Tom Monaghan, subsidized the nuts at Operation Rescue and Right to Life and their leader, Terry Randall, who went after legal abortion clinics with such fervor. So I wouldn’t eat a Domino’s pizza, anyway. The hell with them…

    If I ever get back to Alaska, I’ll make it my personal mission to search out the best fish tacos around the entire state! Then I’ll waddle back to the computer and report my findings here at The ‘Flats as a community service. How’s that?

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