A popular business in the City of Kodiak, Pickled Willy’s, closed last year. Now, a new business is taking its place in the same building by St. Paul Harbor downtown. Jeremy Abena, who worked at at the old store, will open a new one: Kodiak Fresh Seafood. He says it will be a retail operation and serve as a small-scale processor.
Jeremy Abena unlocks a glass door blocked with brown paper. Inside is a long room with freezers set up near the back.
Abena walks into another, smaller room.
“This is my storefront. I’ve still have a lot of work left to do. Got a nice little mural wall gonna be coming up.”
The space is still under construction.
There’s an electrician working in the other room, and Abena points to the different features he imagines customers will see when they first walk in.
“Right off my front desk table, I’ll have the little display case that will have most of my product in it.”
Like smoked salmon and fillets – everything from king to chum – and even a favorite from Pickled Willy’s, smoked black cod. Abena says he’s looking at what worked and what could work better.
“I’m still gonna be smokin’ fish, I’m still gonna be custom processing. I’m doing a lot of things that pickled willy’s was doing, and then I’m going to add a couple of little products here and there.”
Like one marine animal that resembles a slug.
“Possibly working a deal right now with a sea cucumber cooker to come in and help cook sea cucumbers and so maybe I’ll be buying sea cucumbers at some point.”
Abena also plans to hire several workers to process the seafood and says he hopes to open in November or December.