When Daniel Kuhlman closed the Uptown installment of Tastes Wine Bar in May, he made way for a very different type of establishment: Wild Catch. This spot, which is helmed by chef and co-owner Justin Brunson (Masterpiece Delicatessen), focuses on sustainable seafood and local, seasonal ingredients.
The small, sparse restaurant (if you dined at Tastes, you won't recognize it) has been open for just over a week, and it's already got a legion of fans—myself included. Go and order the fish charcuterie, a selection of cured fish and accoutrements served on a large cutting board. The appetizer showcases what Wild Catch is all about: fine product, finesse of technique, and simplicity.
On the evening I dined, the board included wicked-good salmon pastrami, ahi bresaola (which still needed more time to cure), smoked Idaho trout, smoked mussels tossed in house-made mustard (I could eat 20 in one sitting), and a seafood terrine that was creamy, dense, and full of lobster and scallops. The appetizer comes with whole-grain mustard, a dish of crunchy pickled veggies, and grilled slivers of bread.
From there, don't miss the roasted vegetable salad with Fruition Farm's ricotta, and any entrée featuring the crab and corn fritters—Brunson's savory ode to the doughnut. Or, simply order the fritters as a side.
Bonus: Reserve the Captain's Table, a secluded booth near the kitchen with the option of a five- or seven-course chef's tasting menu.
Open for dinner 5 to 10 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday; 1033 E. 17th Ave., 720-382-2935