Giovanni DeGarimore is an interesting cat. I’ve known of him for five plus years but really only know him through Facebook. I was intrigued with doing a Q&A with him because he’s an active and involved entrepreneur who owns several businesses, he loves travel, and otherwise seems to really be someone that is truly squeezing the most out of life. It’s always fascinating to get to know people like this better…it’s motivating. So, let’s get to know a little more about Giovanni.
Matt: Are you a native to the Central Coast? If not, where are you from originally?
Giovanni: Yup. Born at General Hospital in SLO Dec 26, 1973
Matt: Do I have it right that you’re involved in three projects: DeGarimore’s Marine, STAX Wine Bar & Bistro, and Giovanni’s Fish Market?
Giovanni: Yes that’s correct I own each of those entities.
Matt: Who started each of these?
Giovanni: My Dad started Giovanni’s in 1985 (Although he started our first business Central Coast Seafood and the Finicky Fish in 1973).
I started STAX in December 2010
DeGarimore’s Marine was originally Central Coast FUEL & Ice ( a subsidiary of Central Coast Seafood, starting in 1985)
I purchased The fuel Dock and Giovanni’s from my family about 15 years ago now.
Matt: When did each business start and how long have you been involved?
I’ve been working for my dad since I was a child. Filleting fish, making fish boxes, I remember filleting squid as young as 5 or 6. (I got paid 1 penny per squid.)
Matt: What is the philosophy behind each?
Giovanni: DeGarimore’s Marine provide shoreside services to the (at the time) large fishing fleet operation out of Morro Bay.
Giovanni’s provides the freshest seafood (often local) direct to the consumer. The freshest fish at the best price. Being able to cut out the middle man= savings for the consumer. Our location gives us a unique advantage over almost anyone else.
STAX provides a new experience weekly not only to tourists but for locals, who maybe haven’t had an opportunity to try some of the local wines, or imports for that matter. With over 100 SKUs constantly changing and new food specials weekly, even the locals can have a different food and wine experience each week for around $20 bucks.. Bring a touch of class to the waterfront in a tasting/bistro that really didn’t exist in Morro Bay.
Matt: Which one is your passion project…your favorite one to work in/ on?
Giovanni: Tricky question. Short answer it changes.. for a while it was DEFINITELY STAX. But any business with employees can take it’s toll on you. I think Giovanni’s will always be my real “passion project” as I am so intimately tied to the family legacy. This business was started by my parents the year I was born, both of my parents are gone now, so this business will always be special to me. It’s been a pleasure to represent the DeGarimore name in such a positive and respected way.
Matt: Is there anything coming up with one of these businesses that you’d like to share?
Giovanni: Not at this time
Matt: From being friends on Facebook I see that you seem to be really into travel, where are a few of your favorite spots that you’ve traveled to?
Giovanni: Love Thailand. So much culture and great food, and so cheap! Europe is always so classy and a pleasure to visit if you’ve got the money. And Mexico, what’s not to love about Mexico? The beaches, the people, the food, and it’s so close. Mexico for me with always be like the “other woman” so close and easy to access.. LOL
Matt: What places are you wanting to travel to that you have not yet been?
Giovanni: Hoping to go to Indo and/or Vietnam this year (fingers crossed) it’s been a couple years since I’ve traveled so I am VERY looking forward to a new adventure!
Matt: Other than travel, what do you enjoy doing when not working?
Giovanni: Getting older, priorities or things that bring us happiness evolve. This is the case with me. I’m starting to enjoy my garden more, and of course any time spent with my daughter brings me immense happiness. I enjoy motorcycles and scuba, as well.