Lex Legate was working at The Fresh Market grocery store when a local produce seller came in and told him that Peanut Depot was for sale.
“I thought, ‘No kidding. What is that?’” Legate says. “You have to come down and see it,” the produce seller told Legate. “What you see is what you get.”
Legate liked what he saw and has now owned Peanut Depot for the past seven years. The business has gone through a number of ownership changes in its 106 years of operation. It was originally owned by the Cassimus family and then changed hands several times before Legate bought it.
Peanut Depot peanuts are roasted on site in a 90-minute process involving antique roasters. Peanuts are for sale in three flavors: roasted, salted and Cajun. Roasted peanuts are natural with no salt or oil. Salted peanuts are lightly salted in their shells. Cajun peanuts are a hot and spicy variety. Boiled peanuts are also sold.
Additionally, Peanut Depot distributes peanuts to a variety of businesses including grocery stores, the Birmingham Barons and several colleges.
For those wanting to explore Peanut Depot, Legate provides tours of the store. “You call here and go, ‘Can we come down?’” Legate says. “Yeah, you can buy peanuts. I can tell you about it. Ask for the tour.”
A visit will not only give you a look into a local business, but also a look into history.
“It’s part retail. It’s part historical,” Legate says. “It’s a lot of fun.”
And if you’re looking to buy good peanuts, Peanut Depot is the place to go.
Legate says, “They’re just simply the freshest.”
To find out more about Peanut Depot’s roasting process, watch this video of owner Lex Legate explaining it.
[youtube link=”http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f1OTnaVsf38″ width=”590″ height=”390″]
2016 Morris Ave.
Birmingham, AL 35203
Photos by Julie Matthews