All About Freshness and Service

J&P Seafoods has been operating at The Pasadena Farmers’ Market for 34 years
By EDDIE RIVERA, Weekendr Editor
Published on Mar 20, 2020
Marilyn Siracusa

Marilyn Siracusa cares about two things—freshness and her customers, she says. Sircusa has been operating a stall at the Pasadena Certified Farmers’ Market for 34 years, as she told Pasadena Now Wednesday. In fact, she has a total of seven farmers’ market stalls all across Southern California.

That’s a lot of fresh and a lot of customers.

The Pasadena Farmers’ Market continues to operate at both its locations despite the current coronavirus crisis, having been deemed an “essential business,” and exempted from the City’s recent emergency closures.

Marilyn’s also owns Marilyn’s Mediterranean Kitchen, a Mediterranean-themed seafood restaurant in Simi Valley, as well as West Coast Seafood, a fish warehouse next door to her restaurant.

Originally from Chicago, Marilyn’s husbandPeter, and his father John, began the restaurant in 1979, after moving west.

“They were full-blooded Italians,” said Marilyn, “and that’s all they knew, seafood and deli.”

Both were fishermen, recalled Marilyn, and upon her father-in-law’s eventual retirement from the business, Marilyn, along with her husband, took over the various markets, as well as operating two fish warehouses, in Simi Valley and San Pedro.

This is where the fresh comes in, she says.

“I take deliveries every day,” said Marilyn. “Our seafood is fresh and our seafood is whole. We fillet everything to order ourselves,” she added.

“Anything that is in season, we buy it whole and filet it. And we get seafood from all over the world.” Some purchases—like from Iceland, Fiji and Turkey—require airport visits a few times a week, with her biggest overall supplier in Washington.

At the farmer’s market, the truck is outfitted with ice beds, and the fish is displayed “just like it would be at the market,” says Marilyn.

“My customers come first,” she stressed, “and I provide them the best quality seafood, and that’s why I have loyal repeat customers. The freshness is what they like. And that’s what I love about farmers’ markets.”

The Pasadena Certified Farmers’ Market is open Saturdays, 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m at Victory Park, in the 2900 block of North Sierra Madre Boulevard, and at Villa Parke, 363 East Villa Street, Tuesdays, 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

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