If there was a Cheers bar in the Florida Keys, it would be The Catch, because let’s be real – sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name.
At least that’s the vibe at the horseshoe-shaped bar and adjoining dining room. They’re not exactly Sam and Diane, but bartender Jim Horan and co-owner Paige Prouty make lunch just as entertaining, and Prouty greets patrons like she’s known them for years.
Oh, and the food at The Catch, MM 102 oceanside, is as fresh as can be found in the Florida Keys.
For starters, feast on tender tuna poke piled high on a bed of guacamole and served with deep-fried wonton points made in-house.
Get a load of the tuna nachos. Sesame-seared rare tuna tops larger fried wontons along with seaweed and ginger, drizzled with a savory wasabi sauce and served with sweet soy/sesame sauce for dipping. It’s a melt-in-your-mouth combo.
Try the tacos, which are anything but basic. Three come with your choice of fish or conch, blackened or grilled, tucked into a flour tortilla with cheese, pico de gallo, homemade, tangy Sriracha sauce and avocado. It’s a flavor combination to remember, served with a side of cucumber salad.
Popular dinner entrees include fresh, locally caught fish prepared any way you like, and the seafood platter – golden fried fresh fish, clam strips, scallops and shrimp served with homemade cocktail and tartar sauces.
Prime rib on Friday nights brings the masses, and there are live bands every weekend night.
Co-owners Prouty and Cathy Gahagen have been in the Keys nearly three decades each, both cutting their teeth in the restaurant industry at Upper Keys eateries like Mrs. Mac’s, The Caribbean Club and Hobo’s Cafe.
“We tossed it back and forth with each other, and just went for it in 2013,” Prouty said.
Since then, The Catch has reeled in the locals, who consistently rave about the Keys-classic joint.
It’s open from Monday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. with daily specials and happy hour Monday through Friday from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m.
The Catch is at 102041 Overseas Highway.