Bay Area fisherman and restauranteur Kenny Belov is bringing his vocal sustainable fishing and ecologically minded seafood business TwoXSea to Portland. Per The San Francisco Chronicle, Belov signed a lease this week on a warehouse in the Pearl District and will send TwoXSea’s Lauren Vannatter to Portland to oversee the new business.
"We’re going to work with a lot of Oregon fishermen from Southwest Oregon up the coast," Belov said. "We will probably bring in some product out of California depending on what seasons are open in California and closed in Oregon and vice-versa."
The first recipients of TwoXSea's bounty will be the Portland restaurant group that includes Ava Gene’s, Woodsman Tavern and Roman Candle Bakery. All local restaurants now officially have a new supply line for high quality, sustainably-sourced ingredients.
Belov is incredibly outspoken about sustainability and takes his battles against harmful practices to social media, calling out long-line fishermen and bottom trawlers for their practices. Longline fishing can catch unwanted prey or "bycatch," killing seabirds, sea turtles, and other ocean life.
Belov, who also owns the long-standing Fish. restaurant in Sausalito, CA, says he created TwoXSea because he was frustrated in the dishonesty and lack of accountability in the seafood marketplace. He hopes Portland-area amateur chefs will benefit from his practices as well.
"In my perfect world I’m trying to find a space where we can do wholesale between the hours of midnight and 6 a.m. when we process, distribute and make deliveries," he says. "From 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. it’ll be a retail facility and a cafe where you can buy fresh fish and get a cup of coffee, a sandwich or dinner."
TwoXSea, 2553 NW Vaughn Street, Portland, OR, website