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Deep Blue Seafood House & Market opens in Fargo

Deep Blue Seafood restaurant and fish market owners John and Busola Mittleider operate the business on Wednesday, July 20, 2016. The venue brings fresh seafood to land-locked North Dakota. Matt Hellman / The Forum1 / 3
Deep Blue Seafood restaurant and fish market owners John and Busola Mittleider operate the business on Wednesday, July 20, 2016. The venue brings fresh seafood to land-locked North Dakota. Matt Hellman / The Forum2 / 3
Deep Blue Seafood restaurant and fish market owners John and Busola Mittleider operate the business on Wednesday, July 20, 2016. The venue brings fresh seafood to land-locked North Dakota. Matt Hellman / The Forum3 / 3

FARGO—Tuna has been the biggest seller at Deep Blue Seafood House and Market since it opened at 4480 23rd Ave. S. late last month.

It came as no surprise to John Mittleider, who helps run the fish market owned by his wife, Busola.

"It's all the things I would have expected. The salmon, tuna and shrimp," he said.

Those who grew up in land-locked states like North Dakota and Minnesota may need a little encouragement to try the pinwheel octopus or alligator tail meat.

Mittleider acknowledged that a lot of their success will depend on education.

"A good part of our job, a big portion honestly, will be educating people on how they can use and prepare a certain fish," he said. "If I bring in escolar or Hawaiian opah, people may not have had an opportunity to try it and are hesitant to prepare it at home. We will do our best to give people ideas and give comparisons to a fish people are familiar with."

Not everyone will need the help. Stan McGrath of Wahpeton knew exactly what he wanted when he visited the store Wednesday, July 20. He was there to pick up dry scallops.

"Your store-bought scallops are wet scallops. They're mushy and they shrink a lot. ... I heard these guys opened so I came to give theirs a try," he said.

Mittleider believes Deep Blue Seafood offers the widest selection of seafood in North Dakota.

Deep Blue Seafood restaurant and fish market brings fresh fish to landlocked North Dakota. Matt Hellman / The Forum

From blue crab and shrimp from vendors in Apalachicola, Fla., to oysters from Boston, everything is fresh.

So fresh, in fact, that it cannot be sold as "sushi-grade."

"I can't say it's sushi-grade because in order to do so it has to be frozen for a certain amount of time to kill any parasites from anything that might be in the meat. ... Personally, I don't have a problem eating it raw, but I can't say it's sushi-grade unless it's been frozen," Mittleider said.

The store does, however, sell the seaweed wraps, seasoning and other necessities for people who want to make sushi at home.

'East Coast crab shack'

In addition to the market, Deep Blue Seafood features a small restaurant with seating for 24 people. Mittleider describes it as being similar to an East Coast crab shack.

The menu features chowders and soups, sandwiches such as a shrimp po-boy and a salmon burger, and fish baskets with hand-cut fries and coleslaw. They also serve a few more exotic items such as frog legs and gator bites.

Mittleider said the response from the public so far has been really positive.

"We've had grown men bouncing up and down clapping their hands because they're excited to get fresh seafood. It's been real encouraging," he said.

BUSINESS PROFILE

What: Deep Blue Seafood House & Market

Where: 4480 23rd Ave. S., Fargo

Contact: (701) 566-8776

Online: www.dbseafood.com

Hours: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, closed Sunday

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