Farewell, Fish Tale Seafood Restaurant!
2014-07-28 · By Deana Rodriguez
Friends Gather At Fish Tale Seafood Restaurant
The Fish Tale Seafood Restaurant originally opened its doors on Britton Drive in Los Altos on the 22nd of November 1977, and closes its doors for the last time on August 1st, 2014. However, only a few days before the August 1st closing date, on the blue-skied Sunday morning of July 27th, something rare and special happened: More than 60 past and present Fish Tale family members arrived, hugged and shared stories and memories of working at the Fish Tale seafood restaurant — All while preparing to say farewell to the landmark establishment.
The Bloesers and Their Extended Family
By 10:30am, everyone had gathered around the restaurant storefront for one last set of group photos. Co-owners John and Jerry Bloeser (now both in their 70’s) sat front and center, with their wives, children, grandchildren and extended Fish Tale family around them. Some of the people had been with the Fish Tale — the oldest seafood restaurant in Long Beach — for over 30 years.
Jerry Bloeser is quick to mention Fish Tale manager Leo Vega: “He’s done it all! He’s been with us for 32 of our 37 years; he started as a dishwasher and now he’s been managing since 1998. We couldn’t have done all of this without him.”
Shared Stories and Memories
Many employees sat thoughtfully, and wrote in the memory book that was set out for friends to sign. Some employees shared stories of meeting their spouse at the restaurant, or seeing their children work in the same restaurant that they had. The common theme throughout the shared memories was one of support and caring.
“This is a special place, with a very special community of people … Fish Tale is a BIG family.” Says Wendy Bloeser (who, by the way, met her husband JC Bloeser while they both worked at the Fish Tale).
Jerry added that, “All of our kids — mine and John’s — have worked the restaurant at one time or another — 5 kids total.”
How It All Began
When I first sat down with Jerry Bloeser in early July to discuss the history of the restaurant, his first sentence was, “Well, the Fish Tale was really born out of a Jacuzzi…”
He explained that he had been sitting in a Jacuzzi with the then-owner of Fidler’s Three (John Faber) and a few other friends when they began exploring the idea of opening a seafood restaurant in Long Beach.
Jerry’s approach to the story of the Fish Tale epitomizes the laid-back, communal, friendly-but-sophisticated demeanor that has always characterized the restaurant.
The Bloeser family, which also owns the carpet company next door (it began in 1879!), will remain as busy as ever, but both John and Jerry are ready to move on from the restaurant business. The timing was right when the owner of E.J. Malloy’s inquired about the space, and I’ve been told that a lot of the wood and craftwork, and of course the bar, will remain. I’ve also heard that when E.J. Malloy’s comes in to replace the Fish Tale, the current staff will also remain. This is great news for everyone, when considering the solid group of employees and loyal patrons that the Fish Tale has attracted. I, as one such patron, wish the Bloeser family the very best, and wish great success to everyone involved — past, present and future!
Send a Note To Fish Tale
Would you like to share a fond memory or a kind word about the Fish Tale on facebook? Visit their facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/fishtaleseafood