The goods: “Top Chef” winner Hung Hyunh partners with New York’s EMM Group to open seafood-focused Catch in the James Royal Palm Hotel.
Ambience: There’s a lounge, small dining room and sushi bar downstairs, and upstairs a cozy dining room with graffitied brick walls, copper drum lighting and a clamorous open kitchen.
The grub: Asian-influenced seafood. Prices are high: Starters $14-$38, mains $26-$48 and sides $9.
Begin with a basket of pretzel bread and mustard butter. Move onto salmon belly carpaccio with watercress salad, the Shorecrest roll (spicy tuna and with salsa verde), the Catch roll (crab and miso honey), beef potstickers with parsnip puree or mahi mahi tacos with guacamole and lime.
Larger plates include Dungeness crab spaghetti with flying-fish roe, scallop and cauliflower, crispy whole snapper, crispy pork shank and a massive deep-fried Cantonese lobster wok-roasted with ginger, garlic, jalapeno, scallions, oyster sauce, sake and butter.
Desserts include a Key lime donut topped with coconut ice cream, chocolate soufflé with peanut-butter ice cream, homemade peanut butter cups and the signature cookie bucket stocked with chocolate chip cookies, brownies, fried Oreos and coconut macaroons.
Verdict: Innovative (and sometimes local) seafood dishes from a Manhattan celeb chef.