Alaskan cod company to relocate food truck to INW
Current, former fishing captains expect to open here in mid-NovemberOctober 26th, 2023
A pair of Alaskan fishing boat captains soon will be frying up their wild Alaskan cod in the Inland Northwest.
Cashmere, Washington-based Captain’s Cod Company is relocating one of its food trucks to the Spokane area from Western Washington. Its other food truck operates in Central Washington.
Captain’s Cod Company, which is incorporated under the name Captain’s Cod LLC, is expected to begin serving Spokane and surrounding areas in mid-November, pending the permitting process, says Baz Lloyd, co-owner of the food truck company and former captain of the Northern Leader, a nearly 200-foot-long Alaskan Leader Fisheries boat.
Best known for its fish and chips, cod sandwiches, cod fritters, and clam chowder, Captain’s Cod was founded in 2019 by Lloyd and his business partner, Shaun Andrew. Andrew is currently a captain of the Northern Leader and part owner of Lynden, Washington-based Alaskan Leader Fisheries. Lloyd and Andrew worked together for over 25 years prior to opening Captain’s Cod.
“My passion has always been cooking,” says Lloyd, who started his fishing career as a cook on fishing vessels before working his way up to captain. “When I was talking to Shaun about slowing down and not being up north so much, we came up with this idea and it sounded like a good semiretirement idea for me.”
Captain’s Cod is relocating its Western Washington truck to the Spokane area because Andrew is moving to neighboring Idaho and because it is expected to be more successful here, Lloyd says.
“There’s a lot more, obviously, fresh fish available over (in Western Washington),” he says. “We were just generating a lot more revenue here in Central Washington and figure to do that in the Spokane area where we’re a little bit more of a niche.”
All of the wild Alaskan cod served at Captain’s Cod food trucks comes from the Northern Leader, which operates on the Bering Sea, Lloyd says. The Northern Leader brings in about 1.5 million pounds of fish each month and distributes to Costco Wholesale Corp., Whole Foods Market Inc., and Ivar’s Inc., as well as other restaurants and retailers around the world.
The Northern Leader only uses the hook-and-line method of fishing, which Lloyd says is more environmentally friendly than other methods, because it doesn’t use nets and has less by-catch, the portion of commercial fishing catch that consists of marine animals caught unintentionally.
Fish caught on the Northern Leader are flash frozen within two hours of being caught, then delivered to Dutch Harbor, in Alaska, before being shipped to Seattle, where Lloyd makes weekly pickups.
“I personally drive over on Tuesday and pick up a full pallet of fish,” he says.
All of the fish is cut and breaded by hand at Captain’s Cod’s commercial kitchen in Cashmere. The dishes served at the food trucks are all made from recipes Lloyd has fine-tuned while cooking on fishing boats.
“Once a week, I’ll bring a week’s worth of the product over to Spokane, and then the truck gets loaded out every night there,” Lloyd says.
The Eastern Washington food truck will be stationed in Spokane Valley and will have access to a commissary kitchen. Lloyd says the kitchen will be used mostly as a wash station, as much of the production will be handled at the Cashmere facility.
What sets Captain’s Cod apart from other seafood restaurants or food trucks is that its fish is frozen immediately and isn’t thawed and refrozen multiple times, Lloyd says.
“All of our fish is cooked directly from frozen,” he says. “Our niche is really that when we get the fish, it’s a single process.”
Part of the inspiration for Captain’s Cod using food trucks as opposed to a traditional restaurant is to be able to bring quality seafood to smaller rural towns.
“Our passion is to bring fish to the people and to small communities that don’t get really good, high-quality fish and chips,” Lloyd says.
Captain’s Cod takes its Central Washington food truck to smaller communities about once a month, says Sarah Lloyd, Baz’s wife and chief of marketing and location director for Captain’s Cod.
“In small rural communities, it’s hard to find good Alaskan seafood, quality seafood,” she says.
Aside from Spokane and Spokane Valley, Captain’s Cod also will travel to nearby Washington and Idaho cities like Cheney, Colville, Clarkston, Lewiston, and Kettle Falls, among others, she says. It will be in Spokane or Spokane Valley at least once a week.
Captain’s Cod is looking to hire about 10 employees for its Spokane-area truck. It will be open 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. A schedule that shows the food truck’s location each day will be available on the company’s website and Facebook page.
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The Arc opened its second thrift store this summer, located at 1441 N. Argonne Road, in Spokane Valley.
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Bombastic Brewery was founded in 2016.