I went into Mr. Marden’s office to reschedule our interview the following day. A looming blizzard had caused mass cancellations. He was pleased to see me because he had wanted to call me but I had not given him my phone number – he was closing the store the next day.
When we finally sat down, it was in his bright restaurant with slanting high ceiling. It was one of the relatively quiet moments before dinner rush. He started with his father, Master Mariner Captain Roy Wilfred Marden, whom he admired greatly. Captain Marden owned a fishing vessel and was known for being the “strong, disciplined.” During WWII he served as the army transport. After the war, he opened the first store in West Newton in 1945, but since moved to Wellesley because of his many customers here.
I remembered buying seafood at the store and saw the senior Captain still working behind the counter, his hair all silver, so were his eyebrows.
Mr. Marden has his father’s silver hair and gentle smile. He said he enjoyed meeting new people and being involved in many organizations over the years. Every day the arrival of new fish made him smile. He likes new salmon, tilapia, and sea trout.
Marden’s business is prospering. What was originally a seafood store expanded into a restaurant in late 1970s. Now they have thirty trucks serving over four hundred customers.
As for the most famous dish in the restaurant?
The secret of their family’s success?
Image from captainmardens.com