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Istvan Juhasz


Fishmonger Where do you work? Moby Nicks in Dartmouth


What are your first tasks of the day at 8am? I take in deliveries, put the ice out and present the fish nicely for our customers.


Where does your fish come from? Some comes from the Dartmouth fishermen but most of our stock is landed in Plymouth, which is where we have our headquarters. We have the freshest fish delivered straight from the boats, which means we can prepare and process it straight away. The Dartmouth shop sells locally caught sustainable fish to local restaurants, pubs and the general public.


What is your best seller? Crab. Always crab. Our more adven- turous customers buy them alive, but most buy their crabmeat freshly prepared and ready for their salads or sandwiches.


Your famous window tank of live lobsters and crabs is a definite crowd puller… Yes, loads of people come in every day just to see if they are real! Chil- dren are especially interested. I like it when children come in here, they always ask questions like; “Are the fish real or plastic?” I have a singing lobster that I get them to press – it always gets a laugh.


Do you find people are a bit nervous about buying whole fish? They can be. Some just don’t know what to do with a fish that doesn’t come in sealed supermarket pack- aging. But it’s really easy to cook whole fish and you can even do it in the microwave - just add a bit of salt and pepper. If people come in and ask we’ll always tell them everything they need to know.


Is it a myth that buying from a fishmonger is more expensive? Yes! People are so used to buying everything in one go at a supermar- ket and presume it’s cheaper, but it’s not always the case. We can do a whole plaice or gurnard for £3. We always have offers on which we normally advertise on the board outside.


How many customers do you get a day? In the summer about 200 come through the door but only half that number actually buy, the rest have a look and ask questions. Numbers drop significantly in the winter.


Is there anything you would change about your job? I might change the shop layout slightly - it’s a bit narrow so we can’t have a proper window display. I love my job and I’d like to show off more of our lovely fish to passers-by.


How have things changed in the 13 years you’ve been here? You see less elderly regulars, which is a shame. I used to get the same old ladies in on a Friday morning asking for the same fish. I think that’s just the way things are going - as more people pass away and their houses get snapped up by second home owners.


Where do you come from? Budapest.


When and why did you move? 2004. When my country joined the European Union it opened up more travel and working opportunities. My girlfriend and I decided to head to London straight away. I’m a butcher by trade, so whilst in the capital I looked for jobs advertised across Britain. There was one in Totnes and I thought Devon must be a nice place because it’s where Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall lives! I worked in the town for a few months and then heard about a fishmonger job going at Moby Nicks. I thought I’d try it as cutting up fish couldn’t be that different form cutting up meat. 13 years later I’m still here.


What do you like about Dartmouth? It’s by the water. That’s the main draw for me. When we go away I always love returning home and re- member how lucky I am to live here. I really feel part of the community, loads of people say hi when I walk through the town each day.


Out of all these fish on your counter, which is your favourite? John Dory


What is your favourite takeaway? Well my wife works in Spice Bazaar so it has to be a curry!


Where can we find you when you aren’t in the shop? Fishing or crabbing with my 11-year- old son Martin.


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