Family owned and operated for 43 years, Barlean’s Fishery at the corner of Slater Road and Lake Terrell Road is one of the most well-known yet best-kept secrets in the Ferndale area. While most everyone knows the name, not everyone realizes there is a retail store selling fresh fish and shellfish that often was swimming in the Puget Sound only hours before. It should not be a surprise to see fishermen unloading fish from their boats (on trailers) right outside the retail store during the fishing seasons.
In addition, local restaurants have been taking advantage of Barlean’s Fishery as a wholesale provider of fresh seafood for years.
Started by Dave and Barb Barlean, 22 years ago daughter Cindy and husband Ronan took over the operation. They sold the business recently to brother Bruce Barlean in October of 2014 to keep it in the family. This was a quiet transition with no changes in the operation or in the products offered.
But now that things have continued to run smoothly for nearly a year since, confidence is high for expanding on what people can expect from Barlean’s Fishery according to Barlean’s Fishery General Manager Mark Riedesel.
The first new offerings to watch for is beer and wine to accompany your seafood purchases. The initial idea was to make it simple to pick up a wine that has perfectly paired with your fish purchase. From that came including beers as well. According to Riedesel, “We will be focusing on beer and wines from high-quality local microbreweries and wineries.”
Also to watch for is a new Barlean’s Fishery food truck (actual name yet to be announced). A menu has been designed that is, of course, centered around the seafood they stock. Menu items include fish and chips, fish tacos, clam chowder, oyster shooters, seafood salads, crab and shrimp cocktails and more. The truck they purchased is equipped with a grill so they can easily serve up exciting items like barbecued salmon, grilled halibut and salmon bratwurst.
The food truck will be parked by the parking area near the fishery store. Plans are for the parking area to be paved in mid-July as part of a “sprucing up” project. In addition, the fishery store interior will receive some sprucing up too.
Riedesel explains, “We are looking to expand, develop new channels and we will be trying new avenues to accomplish that.”