Finding amazingly fresh seafood in the suburbs of a river town sounds kind of oxymoronic from the outset. But step inside the Seafood Station and all doubts get washed away with just one look at their mouthwatering mussels, savory salmon, salty shrimp, sushi-grade tuna and more.
The friendly, approachable, neighborhood grocer vibe of the shop is exactly what owner Jeff Simmons was going for when he opened up his Seafood Station more than 20 years ago, serving the Greater Loveland area with premium seafood and homemade sides. Loyal customers will tell you that you’ll be greeted by name as you walk through the glass doors to select a fresh fillet. Then browse their ready-made Grab-n-Go section stocked with starters, soups, sides, sauces and entrees. Or order a party platter with cocktail shrimp, smoked salmon and dips. There’s dessert, too—Jeff’s famous key lime pie.
Seafood Station: Then & Now
Simmons initially started out in the insurance business before becoming the self-made fishmonger and self-taught chef who opened the Seafood Station in 1998. “[My dad] Jeff has faced adversity head-on and kept the doors open despite the early 2000’s recession, BP oil spill and local road closures that blocked parking lot access,” his daughter Allison Simmons explains. “No matter the hardship, customers can always expect a ‘howdy folks!’ as they come through the front door.”
According to Allison, it’s this attention to customer service that saved them from having to shutter their doors during the early months of the pandemic. “We owe our survival to our loyal customers,” she says. “However, we’ve also seen a huge growth in new faces that walk in the door. Since the pandemic, more people are seeking authentic buying experiences that support local businesses—we’re so lucky to be a part of that narrative.”
And, because their longtime customers not only continued to faithfully show up but also told their friends about the shop, the Seafood Station is in the process of remodeling and bringing in some updates to keep up with customer demand. “We want to continue to expand our menu—we’re working on new recipes to introduce to our Grab-n-Go selection,” Allison says. “What won’t change is our dedication to freshness, quality and customer satisfaction.”
When you walk into the shop, the first thing you’ll notice (besides the rows of bright, beautiful pieces of fresh fish and shellfish lining their glass display case—delivered fresh on a daily basis) is the large amount of prepped food available for purchase in the freezer and on the shelves. In fact, more than 95% of the shop’s soups, sides and sauces are all made from scratch.
These pre-made items span a wide variety of take-home dishes made with fresh ingredients and local produce. Customers can choose from starters like smoked salmon or salmon jerky, crab or spinach dip, crab cakes, zucchini tomato quiche—the list is long.
They also offer a large selection of soups like lobster bisque, jambalaya and clam chowder; entrees like salmon burgers, seafood lasagne and eggplant parmesan; sides such as coleslaw, mac-and-cheese and deviled eggs; plus sauces and dry rubs to complement your seafood dishes including remoulade, dill, taco, Old Bay and horseradish (pro tip: get the hot cocktail sauce!).
Some of the shop’s offerings change with the seasons, too—it's best to check back often to see what’s in stock.
How-to-Cook Videos, Recipes & Party Platters
In addition to prepping lots of different foods for their customers, they also espouse the “teach a man to fish” philosophy by posting free recipes on their website, their YouTube channel and in a weekly email.
“Our recipes are simple to follow, and use items found in most kitchen pantries,” Allison says. “Often, delicious dishes require less than five ingredients!”
Popular choices include their macaroni-and-cheese (a hit with the kiddos), while their salmon burgers and seafood lasagna are easy pickups for families during the busy mid-week run-around.
As far as fresh seafood goes, the fastest-selling items will vary according to the season. Mussels and clams are more popular in the summer and early fall, while mahimahi and swordfish are frequent fare for summer grilling. Meanwhile, according to Allison, salmon is their year-long community fave because of its versatility and shoppers’ familiarity with its preparation.
For larger gatherings where you don’t have the time (or desire) to cook, the Seafood Station staff will happily put together a to-go party platter for you. The pre-ordered, prepared trays range from everything you need for a DIY Low Country Boil to fan favorites like cocktail shrimp and seafood salad with the added benefit of customization depending on the occasion.
New to the Station? What to Expect (and Love)
New customers always get an introduction to the store and a tour of the display cases. Allison says it’s not like walking into a major grocery retailer, because the staff knows everyone’s names and enjoys helping them celebrate major life milestones.
Notice the lack of the fishy smell expected in a seafood shop. “Customers often compliment the cleanliness of our shop and how we don’t smell ‘fishy.’”
You’ll be offered a delicious sample of their signature smoked salmon.
The staff will ask questions about what you’re trying to cook or create, then offer helpful insights and advice. “We offer cooking tips when customers are planning dinner or when they decide to purchase a fish they’re not familiar with.”
Make your choice, walk out with confidence, repeat often (they’re open daily!). “It’s satisfying when a customer comes back with a glowing smile and a story about the meal they prepared,” Allison says. “When customers feel confident in the kitchen, everyone wins.”
SeafoodStation.net | 10488 Loveland Madeira Rd | 513.683.5993
More people are seeking authentic buying experiences that support local businesses ... we’re so lucky to be a part of that narrative.