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After 80 Years, City's Oldest Fish Wholesaler Closes Its Doors In West Loop

By DNAinfo Staff | January 27, 2017 5:43am
 Isaacson and Stein Fish Company closed on Dec. 31.
Isaacson and Stein Fish Company closed on Dec. 31.
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FULTON MARKET — After more than 80 years, Isaacson and Stein has drained its fish tanks and left the West Loop.

The company's last day in business was Dec. 31, owners said via its Facebook page earlier this week.

"Thanks for the years of patronage and all the great memories. We're going to miss you all!" the company said in the announcement.

The company said it had merged with Supreme Lobster in Villa Park. When a customer complained that the selection and pricing wouldn't be the same, the store responded that Supreme had "picked up some of our suppliers, so they will have some of the same fish we had."

Owners also said the were exploring offering free shipping to the West Loop. They did not immediately respond to a request to comment.

The company sold its two connected buildings at 800-810 W. Fulton Market to R2 Companies, a West Loop development firm, in September, for $9 million.

RELATED: City's Oldest Fish Wholesaler To Move Out To Make Way For Retail Project

Fans of the wholesaler — which also sold to the public via a variety of seafood bins — were sad to see it go.

"Honestly gonna miss you guys big time. One of my favorite spots ever," one person posted on Facebook. Said another: "My family's been coming to you from the northern suburbs from the beginning of time! We will miss you and your fresh fish and seafood and your staff. Good luck to you all! Thank you for bringing the best, the finest and freshest fish to Chicago!"

R2 Companies said it plans to restore the four-story brick-and-beam building at 810 W. Fulton and will tear down the two-story building that served as the fish market at the northwest corner of the intersection and put up a new building on the site.

Founded by Lou Isaacson and Willie and Ike Stein, Isaacson and Stein Fish Co. has been located at the same location for more than 80 years, and was bought by Ben Willner and Milton Block in 1958, according to the company's website. The company is the oldest fresh fish wholesaler in Chicago, according to owners. 

Each week, the store sold 10 tons of fish, and more than 75 varieties of seafood, from all over the world.