LAUNCHED in time for Lent, the new McDonald’s Fish and Fries is making a case for people who love to eat fish and for those who abstain from eating red meat during the period.

“It’s for people who want variety in their meals — something that’s light but satisfyingly tasty,” Christina D. Lao, marketing director of Golden Arches Development Corp., told BusinessWorld during the Feb. 28 launch at their store in Katipunan, Quezon City.

“The Filipinos like eating fish… so we see actually the opportunity to serve that McDonald’s,” she added.

The limited time menu option from the global fast food chain is a nod toward the classic English fish and chips, which is battered and fried fish fillet served with a side of fries or chips as they are called in the United Kingdom.

McDonald’s version is done much the same way — golden-battered fish fillet served with its signature fries and an option of three dipping sauces for the fish: tartar sauce (mayonnaise with pickles), a sweet and sour sauce, and thousand island sauce (ketchup and mayonnaise).

The item was made available starting March 1 — Ash Wednesday — with prices starting at P143 for an a la carte meal.

Ms. Lao said that the fish they use for this item is different from the fish used in McDonald’s Fillet-o-Fish sandwich. She would not specify what fish they use but said it’s not Cream Dory and said it is a freshwater fish.

The item’s packaging mentions that they get their fish using sustainable means.

Being a limited time offer, Ms. Lao said that they expect to offer the dish for two months but assured that if it proves popular, the item will stay on the menu board.

Fish and Fries is also available in McDonald’s Indonesia.

“We wanted to bring the Fish and Fries to the Philippines so Filipinos can enjoy it as well,” said Ms. Lao.

Diners have an option to choose rice instead of fries for the same price.

The McDo Fish and Fries is available at McDonald’s stores nationwide. — Zsarlene B. Chua