GREENWICH, CT – Two businesses with strong followings and roots in Fairfield County will soon be under one roof in Cos Cob.
Fjord Fish Market will move next door from its current original location to share space at 160 E. Putnam Ave. with a bakery based in Darien Flour Water Salt Bread, which will open its second location in Connecticut.
The two plan to open together soon, possibly within the next week, though the storefront is undergoing renovations and inspections.
Fjord takes up space in the back and offers fresh fish, seafood platters, sushi and takeout, from lobster rolls and fresh fish tacos to crab cake sandwiches, full seafood platters and more.
The flour and water bread with salt will have a section in the front for freshly baked bread, pastries, cookies, bonbons, cake donuts, cakes, sandwiches, salads and other items. Filter coffee will also be available from Sey Coffee roaster, Brooklyn, NY.
Fjord co-owner Jim Thistle said the new storefront is slightly larger. It was also previously a joint tenancy that housed Fleisher’s Craft Butchery and Lorca Coffee Bar.
Having tried some of Flour Water Salt Bread’s offerings at their Darien location at 20 Grove St., Thistle knew owner Robert VanKeuren had been looking for a Greenwich location for about a year.
VanKeuren started his bakery business at Lombardi’s in Georgetown, CT in 2013. The Darien store opened in November 2018.
Thistle reached out to VanKeuren and brought up the idea of a shared space.
“We’re really focused on surrounding ourselves with the best people and the best products. Rob and Flour Water Salt Bread, they’re the best at what they do,” Thistle said. “We knew we wanted to be associated with them.”
VanKeuren, a former resident of Old Greenwich for several years, said he’s excited to bring his products to Cos Cob and the ever-growing food scene there.
“Flour Water Salt Bread is basically a group of bakers who love food and make sourdough bread and pastries, and we try to be creative, get inspired by things, try new things, push boundaries and make people smile,” VanKeuren said. “I love the community, it’s super supportive. I think the whole food scene that’s growing in Cos Cob, we just want to add to it.
Greenwich residents have made the short drive to Darien on weekends or for special occasions, and VanKeuren said he’s gotten a lot of requests over the years to open a bakery in town.
The menu will be exactly the same in Cos Cob just like in Darien, but the bakery will soon introduce a new offering in the form of bagels.
The two businesses plan to collaborate on a number of menu items. Bread made from flour and water with salt already bakes a special milk bread that is used on lobster rolls at Fjord Fish Market.
Early future ideas could include crab or lobster toast on sourdough bread and various dishes featuring seafood and puff pastry, VanKeuren said.
“Collaboration is one of my favorite things; pairing up with like-minded people who love food and love to be creative,” added VanKeuren.
Fjord has five other area markets in Darien, New Canaan, Westport, Larchmont, NY, and Brooklyn, NY, in Park Slope.
The move for Fjord – albeit a very short one – comes as the brand launches what Thistle calls “the engine of our future growth”.
About a year ago, Fjord started Northeast Fish Co., which serves as a distribution center for all of its fish markets. Located in the heart of the Fulton Fish Market in Bronx, NY
“It gives us an opportunity to do things a little differently in seafood distribution. We think there’s a lot of mistrust with the current distribution cycle. A lot of the best products aren’t getting to market, and the way we produce seafood in this country and in this world is he’s made a big difference in the last 20 years,” said Thistle.
When the Fjord markets close at night, they put their orders into the distribution center for the next day and the fresh fish arrives at 7am the next morning.
“We think there are different business models that would work well in seafood retail. We are currently in the process of several new initiatives,” Thistle added.
Thistle had a career in finance before acquiring what was then Fjord Fisheries with co-owner Mark Scozzafava in late 2012.
Thistle and Scozzafava strongly believe in responsibly sourced fish and helping customers understand where their seafood comes from.
“We hang our hat on that. There are a lot of different types of fish and there are a lot of different ratings (for fish) that don’t really make a lot of sense,” Thistle said. “We’re trying to make sense to people and bring the best product, the best we think people should be putting on their tables when it comes to seafood.”
Fjord Fish Market will be open from 7:00am to 7:00pm Flour Water Salt Bread opening hours will be from 8:00am to 2:00pm or until sold out, starting Tuesday through Saturday.