Roger Berkowitz Adds a New Seafood Business to His Fish-Filled Resume

The former Legal Sea Foods president and CEO's new company, Roger’s Fish Co., is now shipping flash-frozen seafood around the United States.

Overhead view of raw salmon, cod, and haddock filets next to a seafood cookbook.

Roger’s Fish Co.’s “You Are Reel-y Great!” gift box. / Photo by Brian Samuels Photography

Good news for seafood lovers nationwide: A very familiar face in the business has launched an online fish market, shipping flash-frozen seafood and prepared dishes from a New Hampshire facility throughout the United States. Roger Berkowitz—the former president and CEO of Legal Sea Foods—is back in the game a little over two years after selling the Legal restaurants, the family business he’d helmed since 1992. His new company is Roger’s Fish Co., an online marketplace that lets seafood lovers get a taste of New England in the form of thick clam chowder, whole lobsters, par-baked dinner rolls, and lots more—including a few sweet treats like lobster-shaped chocolate confections and nutty chocolate and toffee sailboats from Salem-based Harbor Sweets.

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Berkowitz, who was inducted into the James Beard Foundation’s Who’s Who of Food and Beverage in America in 2017, is a lifelong fish fan, getting his start at the family fish market as a kid. Founded by his father George in 1950, that market eventually became the Legal Sea Foods restaurant chain we know today. The original one opened in 1968, and now there are around two dozen locations, spanning from Massachusetts to Virginia.

A Staub pot is full of thick clam chowder

Roger’s Fish Co.’s double clam chowder. / Photo by Brian Samuels Photography

Berkowitz told Boston in December 2020 he hadn’t been immediately planning to sell the restaurants, but “the pandemic radically changed things” and business was down significantly. Ultimately he sold all the Legal restaurants to PPX Hospitality Brands, a Medford-based offshoot of an Irish investment firm that focuses on New England-based restaurant ventures. (PPX is also behind Smith & Wollensky and most of the Strega empire.) He kept hold of the Legal name for e-commerce and retail purposes, though, hinting that he was working on a business involving shipping seafood to home customers—and voilà, that’s what he’s doing now. While the new business has its own name, there are plenty of references to Legal, both literal (customers can buy, for example, the Legal Sea Foods cookbook Berkowitz co-authored with Jane Doerfer) and subtle (the clam chowder is “an award-winning 50-year-old recipe … made even better,” and those crackly-crust dinner rolls sure look familiar).

It’s perhaps no surprise that Berkowitz (with the help of an extraordinarily cute canine mascot, Milo) has a big new project. “Retirement is not a goal,” he said in a 2018 interview with Boston, when he was 66. “Being able to leverage previous knowledge in a better way is a goal. I don’t feel any desire to give this up anytime soon.”

A fluffy white and brown dog sits, wearing a blue harness.

Milo Berkowitz, the unofficial Roger’s Fish Co. mascot and pet treat ambassador. / Photo courtesy of Roger’s Fish Co.

Roger’s Fish Co. ships throughout the contiguous United States, 1-866-ROGERCO,