Galway is a port city and has access to fresh fish throughout the year, and Galway has another asset in the person of Stephane Griesbach. He came here from France in 1997. He had firsthand experience of the fishmarkets in France and, on his arrival here he worked his way up through salmon farming and fish wholesaling and learnt the industry the hard way.
In 2006 he saw his opportunity, formed Gannet Fishmongers, and opened his first fish stall in the Galway market.
When the fishing boats arrive in Rosaveal to auction their catch, Mr Griesbach goes through the boxes and picks the freshest fish for his five market stalls, his shop in the Eyre Square Centre and his list of prestigious restaurants and hotels.
Gannet’s policy is simply to provide their customers with the best fish at the best price, no gimmicks.
“When it comes to choosing our fresh food, we have to take seasonality and availability into consideration. That way we get value for money but also the best produce at the peak of its flavour,” he says.
Mr Griesbach operates a hands-on management policy and will sell only the best quality fresh produce from any of his outlets. The produce is at least 90 per cent fresh Irish, sourced in ports such as Rosaveal, Castletownbere and Donegal.
“As fish mongers we have a responsibility to our customers to allow them to sample the variety of fish available to us here in Ireland.
“I have a great team of professionals working with me who know their fish and are always willing to help our customers by preparing it and advising on simple recipes that allow them to enjoy its true flavour.”
Chefs from the top restaurants in Galway, and further afield, recognise Mr Griesbach’s special knowledge of fish and trust him to present them with the best ‘catch of the day’.
So now, five years on, Gannet has built up a successful ‘Fish Market’ business with market stalls in Galway, Oranmore, Loughrea, Moycullen and Ballinasloe.
They have opened a fish shop in the Eyre Square Centre where they can, along with their usual choice of fresh produce, supply some pre-prepared fish dishes and, as always, the professional, friendly service that they have become known for.
You could meet Stephane Griesbach at any of his outlets as part of his hands-on style of management; if you do, why not talk to him about his favourite subject, fresh fish!