We started watching the Seattle Fish Guys pull together their plan for a Central District fish market and raw bar at 23rd and Jackson in March. In the meantime, some seismic scale-level changes have rolled through their neighborhood — Vulcan is now their
landlord neighbor and there’s a plan in motion for a massive redevelopment across the street.
Owner Sal Panelo and manager Ian Tanaka are fish mongers, expert at selecting and preparing the freshest Pacific Northwest seafood. They didn’t know about Vulcan’s plans but they did know more people are about to call 23rd and Jackson home.
“The neighborhood is changing. You look up Jackson Street, everything is being rebuilt,” Tanaka said Friday morning as he prepared for another day of business at the newly opened market and raw bar.
Panelo and wife and business partner Desiree Chinn were part of the partnership operating City Fish and decided they were ready to break out on their own away from the tourist-clogged bustle of Pike Place Market. Chinn said landing at 23rd and Jackson puts their business in a more convenient location for their family’s life and in a neighborhood she hopes is hungry for fresh seafood.
Seattle Fish Guys is a Pike Place fish stand brought to the Central District, ready to sell you a salmon filet, or slice fresh sashimi, shuck some oysters, and pile up a poke bowl for you to enjoy at the bar. It replaces a Quiznos sandwich shop — not a bad trade. Beer and wine are in the works. Hours are planned for 10 AM to 6:30 PM daily, 10 AM to 5:30 PM on Sundays. A big grand opening party is Sunday with “whole roasted pig, Penn Cove mussel eating contest, prizes, fresh seafood samples, Hawaiian cake, oh, and a lion dance,” Seattle Met reports.
Chinn said business was booming even without the party. “We thought we’d have a quiet opening but customers were coming in waves,” she said.
Seattle Fish Guys is located at 411 23rd Ave S. You can learn more on the Seattle Fish Guys Facebook page.