Wholey’s Fish Market Will Celebrate Its 111th Anniversary With A “Jaws”-Sized Meal

Just when you thought it was safe to go back on a diet, the Strip District institution will create a 111-pound fish sandwich.


Fintastic news, foodies! Wholey’s Fish Market is making a reel big splash to celebrate its 111th anniversary. (cue “Jaws” theme song)

On Saturday, Sept. 23, the Strip District seafood institution will create a 111-pound fish sammich on a Mancini’s bun. Holy mackerel! That could supply a church fish fry throughout the Lenten season! If anyone has a vat of malt vinegar, let minnow.

Made with whiting, a small, silver-colored fish, the Whaler Wonder will be a larger version of the company’s Wholey Whaler, a popular sandwich that’s always the catch of the day. The bun will be as big as Mancini’s 8-foot by 4-foot oven, where it will bake for two hours. Co-owner Nick Mancini Hartner says it’ll take four people to hoist the Italian loaf.

The nautical nonsense starts at 11 a.m., when the iconic storefront at 1711 Penn Ave. will be swimming with yinzers enjoying giveaways, raffles, a photo booth, cake and, of course, bites of the Whaler Wonder. You’re gonna need a bigger appetite.

Penguins mascot Iceburgh — the sole of the team — will lend a flipper in the festivities. Cod there be anything more Pittsburgh? I’m sure you’ll be herring about this bash for decades to come.

Before you grab a chum and dive into the party, let me school you on some Wholey’s history: 

In 1912, Robert L. Wholey offishally launched the company in McKees Rocks (Mancini’s neighborhood!) selling live poultry, meats, sausages and coffees. His son, Robert C. (sea?) Wholey opened the Robert Wholey Company Poultry Market Downtown in 1948 before moving the operation to its current Strip site a decade later. Much to the delight of local pescatarians, the family cast their nets wide and added fresh seafood to the business in 1960. 

Wholey’s has been making waves in the industry ever since. Hang 10, dudes!

Categories: PGHeats