It has been close to a year since we posted a progress summary about Postal Fish Company. We’ve been checking in periodically and are excited to now share the latest (and a sneak peek). You’ll also have an opportunity to catch a taste of their fare at City Tap for their Father’s Day Fish Fry.
Father’s Day is around the bend and as chefs’ lifestyles go, Chefs James Clark and Bill Hartley work arduously in the kitchen while spending quality time with family. The hours they invest in their families and restaurant makes one wonder when they sleep. Chef Clark, “I am a father of two daughters, Paige (age 10) and Madison (age 16), who keep me proud, worried, busy and sleepless all at the same time!! My girls love to eat seafood as much as love to cook and eat it as well. They have been sitting on stools at oyster bars since they could talk! Bill has a niece Emily (age 3) and nephew Jack (age 1) and they are like kids of my own (but the best part is when they start crying I can hand them off to my sisters)!!”
Chef Clark continues, “Postal Fish Company will be very family friendly and we hope that fathers will take their sons or daughters to our Oyster Bar to experience that first taste of sweet salt marshiness you get from an oyster.”
Postal Fish Company has a plan to focus on sustainability. Chef Clark tells us, “Bill and I are very conscious on what fish we select and of course freshness and quality are our main objectives but also what kind of fish we select and how it was harvested are very important to us as well. We feel that traveling to the fish houses and developing the relationships with commercial fisherman ourselves allows us to be able to pick the very best fish and shellfish possible.” They have been passionate about their philosophy, “When we cut out the middle man we no longer have to gamble on the fish we order, if it is going to be to our standards or not; we have the ability to pick and choose what we want to serve.”
Postal Fish Company will offer a variety of fish and shellfish from VA, NC, and SC that will always be rotating, plus meats and vegetables from local farmers (Peregrine Farm, Brinkley Farms, South Wind Produce, Lilly Den Farm, Eco Farm, Screech Owl Greenhouses, Lyon Farms and Elysian Fields Farm, to name only a handful); these will change daily as well.
Postal Fish Company will offer catering in the future; the primary focus is restaurant operations so eventually, you might experience a visit from these talented chefs for an oyster roast or Low Country Boil! Postal Fish Company will have a private dining room that guests will be able to book (once they are closer to opening, they will let the public know how to call and book it for their gathering). Plans for this venue space will offer intimate dining experiences in this historic building, once a post office.
Guests will enjoy lunch, dinner, table service, wine/craft beer, etc. Initially, they will be open for dinner Tuesdays through Saturdays, 5pm – 10pm and Sunday, 11am – 3pm. Lunch will be introduced later, in 2018. Service will be friendly and inviting and the wines will be much like the menu, always evolving. Chef Clark tells us that they will feature seven craft beers on tap that will be a mix of local and regional beers along with a selection of bottle beers. They will have a full bar and feature a mix of local spirits, such as Fair Game Beverage Company’s products, as well as a working collection of brown liquor.
Local partners, current and future, are critical to Postal Fish Company, and Chefs Clark and Hartley have already committed to support Pittsboro and Chatham County businesses. They have been working with Chatham County farmers and others as they want to see Pittsboro grow. Chef Clark, “We are excited to be a part of the downtown business community.”
We had to ask, and are pleased with the answers, about vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, and other dietary requests and needs. Would someone who doesn’t eat seafood enjoy an experience at the restaurant and why? Chef Clark’s resounding answer, “Yes! We will, of course, have dishes on our menu for the people who do not like seafood and with our variety of local vegetables, we will have the ability to cater to all. For gluten-free, we have some family members who have celiac disease and love to eat fried fish, so we have developed a fish breader that is gluten-free that will be used for any of our fish or shellfish that we fry.”
The menu is still under wraps for Postal Fish Company, which opens later this fall. Chefs Clark and Hartley are testing the menu ideas and Marcey Clark (Chef Clark’s wife) is working on the desserts. Take a look at what they’ll serve at the Father’s Day Fish Fry at the City Tap, an opportunity to get an early flavor for their opening later this year.