When Mackey Ungaro first set up shop selling fresh fish in Los Angeles Harbor in 1957, he likely had no idea that his small enterprise would grow into the multi-million dollar seafood empire the business is today. Under the leadership of his nephew Tommy Amalfitano, his son Henry, and now his grandchildren, the simple fish market has become a dynasty in the truest sense of the word.
“San Pedro Fish Market is an original Southern California institution and the best restaurant choice on the Los Angeles waterfront for premium quality, prepared to order seafood at affordable prices, served fresh from our family to yours,” said Michael Ungaro, Mackey’s grandson and Director of Marketing and New Product Development for San Pedro Fish Market and Restaurant. “Over the years, our business has grown from my grandfather’s fish market to the 2,000 seat full service restaurant and seafood shop you see today. Since we opened the doors to our current location in March of 1983, we’ve been serving only the best quality seafood to our guests. Whether it’s caught locally or brought in from around the world, our guests can rely on getting only the freshest fish, prepared to order, any way they want, and served family style on our bustling waterfront outdoor patio,” he added, “that’s the way our family has always done it, and we always will.”
This recipe for success has ensured the family owned and operated business could beat the odds and continue to flourish as their competitors stumbled during the past few years of economic recession. “Ours is the third generation to run the business, and we understand the needs of families because we are a family,” Ungaro said. “We know a meal out is a treat, and should do more than just satisfy hunger, it should satisfy the need for togetherness and foster an atmosphere where stories are shared, memories made and good times had. San Pedro Fish Market will always strive to deliver the best experience for the best value to all our guests.” Serving more than 10,000 hungry customers each week at the restaurant, they are doing just that.
The focus on family is evident at San Pedro Fish Market and Restaurant, from the happy faces of the guests who visit to the happy employees who get more than just a steady paycheck from their job. “We employ more than 120 people from the surrounding community, and our employees are like family to us, “ Ungaro said, “We pay above average wages, offer benefits like health insurance, 401K retirement plans and paid vacation, and treat our employees to an annual appreciation program where they have the opportunity to win premium prizes like televisions, computers and iPods.”
As vital a part of the San Pedro community as the port itself, San Pedro Fish Market and Restaurant is the largest retail employer on the San Pedro waterfront and is also the oldest tenant in the Port of Los Angeles. Committed to supporting local schools and charities, San Pedro Fish Market pays higher rent per square foot than any other tenant in the port, and offers a robust recycling program whose proceeds benefit local businesses. The tax revenue San Pedro Fish Market brings to the city of San Pedro is substantial and will only continue to grow as business grows.
With the impending redevelopment of the Los Angeles Waterfront on the horizon, San Pedro Fish Market is prepared to evolve to meet the needs of the new waterfront while continuing to serve loyal patrons. Ungaro said, “For the past 60 years, we have been innovators on the Los Angeles Waterfront. From building our fish market and restaurant, to introducing Southern California to the concept of the ‘shrimp tray’, we have always been originators whose model for success has often been imitated but never duplicated.” He added, “As innovators, we are committed to be ambassadors for the changing business community on the waterfront and will bridge the gap between the past and the future while continuing to provide our customers, old and new, an unparalleled casual waterfront dining experience. We are committed to meld the accomplishments of our past with the changing needs of the future to grow with the redevelopment, ensuring new success for all partners.”
Plans are in development for a 30th anniversary celebration in March, 2013. For more information, visit sanpedrofish.com.