It was almost 60 at our place yesterday, and there’s a definite feeling of spring in the air. We’re looking at a forecast of rain every day for the coming week, so I expect that things will be greening up by the end of next week.
We ate lunch at a new restaurant in Blairsville the other day, American Catch. It’s in an old shopping center just off the square, behind Papa’s Pizza. (The location is a little obscure, as I’d never noticed that shopping center before.) If I got the back story correct, the owner and the chef met in school some years ago and recently decided to get together and realize their dream of having a seafood place. I believe they’ve been open for about five months. The owner is Matt Leonard, who has run a few other restaurants in Blairsville. The executive chef, Vincent Bagford, is a 2006 Johnson & Wales graduate. We had fish and chips (fresh potato chips) and a crawfish po’boy. The sides were stewed cabbage, cole slaw, and salads. The fish was actually cod. When we said we were impressed with the quality of the ingredients, our server told us that the chef goes to the market in Brunswick every Monday, and that he makes all the salad dressings and similar items himself. I believe the aspiration is to serve only locally sourced and fresh ingredients, although they did have shrimp on the menu (the Georgia food shrimp season is currently closed). There’s a raw bar in the evening, and Maine lobster is on the menu. For folks who don’t like seafood, they serve Brasstown beef, Springer Mountain chicken, and andouille sausage. The concept is a bit fancier than the coastal fish shack, with good table service, but a bit less fussy than fine dine. When you live in Blue Ridge, you don’t often think of Blairsville as a dining destination, but we were impressed with this place, and I imagine we’ll find our way back. They don’t have a liquor license, but they do permit brown bagging. It’s lunch and dinner Tuesday – Saturday (they close between lunch and dinner) and lunch only on Sunday. 706.745.3754.