How did two hospitality honchos make Catch LA the hottest thing since, well, Catch NYC?
The restaurant’s popular ceviche.
What works in New York doesn’t always work in LA, and vice versa, especially when it comes to dining out—food, service, and vibe are often as disparate as “Fuhgettaboutit!” and “Have a peaceful day!” But somehow, Gotham restaurateurs Mark Birnbaum and Eugene Remm have achieved epicurean détente between the East and West Coast via Catch, their WeHo buzz hive situated on a rooftop at Melrose and San Vicente. The brand has been a foodie magnet in their NYC Meatpacking District location, as well as in Dubai and Mexico’s Playa del Carmen. The LA version has similarly busted out big, despite some initial concerns. “I thought it would have taken us longer to reach all the people in the city, and that there would have been a much slower buildup,” Remm explains. “But it was immediate.”
Mind-blowing seafood is the lure. And while the place has fl ourished via its vibrant bar scene and a young, celeb-y clientele, Catch LA starts with with the basics. “First and foremost, get the food and service right,” says Birnbaum. “We’re very conscious of that. Maybe it’s because we came out of the nightclub business, but we weren’t worried about the vibe. We have vibe coming out of our eyeballs.”
The partners recently sold 50 percent of their EMM Group to Tilman Fertitta, so look for expansions to other buzzy locales. But for now, LA has a trophy-sized Catch. 8715 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood, 323-347-6060; catchrestaurants.com/catchla