PEABODY — The former storefront of C&C Lobster Co. on Lynn Street is taking on a new life.
The City Council voted 10-0 last Thursday to transfer a special permit from the lobster business to its ice cream shop next door and issue a new special permit to a commercial commissary kitchen that will go in the old seafood site. Ward 2 Councilor Pete McGinn was absent for the vote.
Per the request of the Health Department, all vendors using the space must first apply for a food establishment permit from the city.
The idea for the kitchen was inspired by a similar business in Salem, and will allow locals to rent out the kitchen and sell some of their goods in the space’s small retail area starting May 1, said Bill Demoree, an owner of C&C Lobster who will now run the kitchen.
“It’s new and exciting for all these people that work out of their house or need a kitchen to work out of, and it’ll be convenient and helpful for everybody in that aspect of the food industry,” Demoree said. “It’ll work out well.”
Named after their daughters Casey and Courtney, Demoree opened C&C Lobster with his wife Joanne in 1990. They went on to host popular clambakes at their 297 Lynn St. storefront, which is where the kitchen will go, and opened the ice cream shop, Something Sweet, next door to it 11 years ago that will continue to sell frozen treats.
The lobster business was a good one for the family for years, Demoree said. But with seafood prices skyrocketing, they decided in September to shrink and shift C&C Lobster to online-sales only.
“You can’t make any profit no longer,” Demoree said. “It got that it cost more to do business than the profit we were making on it.”
He said he’s seen fish markets close in Gloucester, Beverly, Nahant and Andover over the last few years for similar reasons.
“With the regulations and quotas, and now with the whole things with the whales and the lobstermen and when they can go out and when they can’t, it’s really making it tough for the markets and the whole industry,” Demoree said.
The Demorees still sell haddock, scallops, lobster meat, salmon, crab cakes and stuffed clams on their website that can be ordered on Wednesdays and picked up on Fridays.
“I still have all my vendors because I’m going to continue to do clambakes that go into the summer,” he said. “They’re a lot of fun and they do well.”
Councilor at-Large Jon Turco said he was highly in favor of the Demorees’ new use of their old space.
“Bill’s been there for, you know, over 30 years and never had a problem with the neighborhood, so I think this fits greatly,” Turco said at the City Council meeting.
Councilor at-Large Tom Gould, who owns Treadwell’s Ice Cream on Margin Street, said he wished Demoree “good luck from (one) ice cream man to another.”
“There’s plenty of room for us in the city of Peabody,” Gould said.
Contact Caroline Enos at CEnos@northofboston.com and follow her on Twitter @CarolineEnos.