Make us your home page
Instagram

MetLife manager transforms into New Port Richey Fish Guy

Rich Bosse, 63, weighs sea scallops before bagging them with his son, Jim Bosse, right, at the Fish Guy seafood and meat market in New Port Richey on Tuesday. Rich Bosse recently opened the market on Grand Boulevard.

BRENDAN FITTERER | Times

Rich Bosse, 63, weighs sea scallops before bagging them with his son, Jim Bosse, right, at the Fish Guy seafood and meat market in New Port Richey on Tuesday. Rich Bosse recently opened the market on Grand Boulevard.

NEW PORT RICHEY — In the first act of his life, Rich Bosse played a New York-based insurance man, a MetLife manager who worked 12-hour days and pulled in about $156,000 a year.

His second act is a little simpler: fish guy.

Last summer, Bosse, 63, opened a seafood and meat market called, appropriately, the Fish Guy, in a yellow Cracker-style cottage on Grand Boulevard that he shares with a vegetable and fruit market.

He sells everything from Cedar Key little neck clams to gulf grouper filets to sirloin steak to homemade gumbo and pierogies.

Business is a little slow so far, but Bosse is banking on an undeniable human need.

"People have got to eat," he said.

Bosse, who is divorced with three grown children, moved to Palm Harbor about five years ago after a 30-year career with MetLife. He had planned on taking it easy, though out of boredom, he picked up some extra work at Allstate.

He was playing volleyball at a Clearwater gym when he struck up a conversation with Jil Belcher, who later moved with Bosse to Holiday. The two hit it off and started dating.

Belcher's son, it turned out, had a Cedar Key clam company. She enlisted Bosse to sell the clams at New Port Richey's downtown farmers market. "It got so big, (Bosse) was selling them out of his Jeep," Belcher said.

She and Bosse thought they might be on to something, so they started looking for a cute shop where they could sell clams and other seafood. They fell in love with the little yellow house on Grand, and the rest is history.

Maybe the whole thing was written in the stars, says Belcher, a Pisces. "The New Yorker moves to Florida and meets a Pisces whose son has a clam company," she said with a laugh.

Bosse gets most of his fish from national distributor Sysco. He said he decided to branch out into poultry and red meat because "You'd be surprised how many people come in here and say, 'I don't like fish,' " he said.

Belcher said she rarely sees people leave without something. "He's such a good salesman," she said. "He's good at talking to people. He has a way of doing it that's not threatening."

It may not seem like the greatest economic timing for people just getting a business off the ground. But Bosse, who says he put about $40,000 into the business, says he has the luxury of not facing the financial pressure to turn a profit too quickly.

Besides, he says, his focus is on his own business. "I don't sit around and worry about someone else's failures," he said.

He has some stiff competition, including longtime seafood business Whitney and Son's in Hudson, but figures there's plenty of room for all of them.

"If there were no other seafood market," he said, "we'd be too busy to talk to you."

Jodie Tillman can be reached at jtillman@sptimes.com or (727) 869-6247.

Fast facts

Hungry?

The Fish Guy is at 4114 Grand Blvd., one block north of State Road 54. The phone number is (727) 204-7674.

MetLife manager transforms into New Port Richey Fish Guy 03/01/09 [Last modified: Sunday, March 1, 2009 11:11pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. DOT shows alternatives to former Tampa Bay Express toll lanes

    Transportation

    TAMPA — State transportation officials are evaluating at least a half-dozen alternatives to the controversial Tampa Bay interstate plan that they will workshop with the community for the next 18 months.

    Florida Department of Transportation consultant Brad Flom explains potential alternatives to adding toll lanes to Interstate 275 during a meeting Wednesday at DOT's Tampa office. Flom presented seven diagrams, all of which swapped toll lanes for transit, such as light rail or express bus, in the I-275 corridor from downtown Tampa to Bearss Ave. [CAITLIN JOHNSTON | Times]
  2. Claim: State pressured CFO, used secret recordings to shut down Universal Health Care

    Banking

    ST. PETERSBURG — The founder of St. Petersburg's Universal Health Care alleges that Florida regulators conspired with the company's chief financial officer to drive the once high-flying Medicare insurer out of business.

    Federal agents raided the headquarters of Universal Health Care in 2013, ordering employees to leave the building. The insolvent St. Petersburg Medicare insurer was then in the process of being liquidated by state regulators.
[DIRK SHADD   |   Times file photo]

  3. Aramis Ayala defends stance against death penalty: 'I did what I believe was proper'

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Orlando prosecutor Aramis Ayala on Wednesday defended her "absolute discretion" to not seek the death penalty in murder cases as justices of the Florida Supreme Court pelted her attorney with pointedly skeptical questions.

    Orlando prosecutor Aramis Ayala, far right, said she was "very well pleased" with her lawyer's case. "I violated no laws." [STEVE BOUSQUET | Times]
  4. Tampa Chamber of Commerce offers boost to black and Hispanic-owned businesses

    Economic Development

    TAMPA — There's a disconnect in Hillsborough County's minority business community.

    Gaston Meredith of Gaston's Culinary Services listens to LaKendria Robinson, Director of Minority Business Accelerator & Economic Inclusion during an information session at the Robert W. Saunders Library in Tampa on Tuesday.
[OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times]
  5. Wesley Chapel, Greater Pasco chambers of commerce merge

    Business

    LAND O'LAKES — Two chambers of commerce representing more than 850 business members from west Pasco to Wesley Chapel and New Tampa are merging into a single organization.

    Greater Wesley Chapel Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Hope Allen will lead the combined chambers of commerce announced Wednesday. The yet-to-be-named chamber will represent more than 850 businesses that currenlty are members of the Greater Pasco and Greater Wesley Chapel chambers.
[JAMES BORCHUCK   |   Times]