* Kathleen Hulsey opened her first location of Kathleen's Catch in 2011 in Johns Creek.
* “I have a map on the wall in each store to show customers where our products come from, and it is also a good visual for customers to see where our fish does not come from,” Kathleen said. “We get fresh seafood delivered every day except Sunday, but we are open on Sundays.”
* Her second location, in Milton, opened in 2015.
* It seemed natural for her daughter, Sara Hulsey, to run the second location. Ashley Sanchez, Sara’s friend since childhood, came on board to manage the Johns Creek location.
* In addition to numerous types of seafood, her stores also contain spices, sauces and various other accompaniments for seafood. Both stores also offer their locally famous lobster rolls, different soups and chowders, and even semi-prepared meals called “Catch to Go” offerings.
Kathleen’s Catch offers a wide variety of fresh oysters and even gives you a description of what the oysters taste like. Who knew, like with wine, there were so many varieties and each are so different? Here are just a few of some of their offerings, depending on availability. It is especially fun to get a few of several varieties and have a taste test to find out which ones you like best.
Beausoleil: Petite shells with deep cups and firm meats. Delicate with a mild brininess and sweet finish.
Blue Point: Fresh, crisp, firm texture with a sweet aftertaste. Slight salinity.
Chadwick Creek: Medium salinity, plump meats.
Chunu: Petite shells with medium meats. High salinity followed by a sweet grassy finish.
Duxbury Bay: Briny flavor with plump meats set in deep cups, followed by a sweet, buttery finish.
James River: Mild brininess, plump meats and mild flavor.
Malipeque: Light-bodied, tender meats with a crisp lettuce-like flavor, high brininess and a clean, sweet finish.
Watch House: Plump meats with a medium salinity and a cucumber-melon finish.
Wellfleet: Plump meats with a mild, sweet flavor, high brininess and a crisp, clean finish.
About this article
This article was originally published in the July/August 2016 issue of M: North Atlanta, a publication of the Forsyth County News. To read the entire magazine, click here.
If you think you have to drive to the coast to find fresh seafood, think again. North Atlanta is lucky enough to be home to Kathleen’s Catch, a fantastic seafood market with two locations — Johns Creek and Milton.
Owner and fishmonger Kathleen Hulsey has always been passionate about eating well and feeding her family the freshest food possible. Married to Mike, who has worked for Inland Seafood for the past 30 years, Kathleen said fresh seafood has always been a big conversation around the house.
“Our two children grew up around a dinner table with lots of talk about food — where it comes from, issues involving the food industry and of course, all things seafood.”
While raising her children, Kathleen found herself frustrated with finding fresh seafood at the grocery stores.
“The options at most grocery stores are limited,” she said. “I was looking for someone who knew something about what they were selling — where the fish comes from, how it is caught, what it tastes like and how best to prepare it. I wanted someone who specifically specialized in seafood.”
After much research and thought, Kathleen took a leap of faith and opened the Johns Creek location in 2011.
“I truly started out with a shoestring budget. I worked open to close every day and even had to artfully arrange things since I didn’t have enough product to fill up my shelves,” Kathleen said.
In addition to numerous types of seafood, her stores also contain spices, sauces and various other accompaniments for seafood. Both stores also offer their locally famous lobster rolls, different soups and chowders, and even semi-prepared meals called “Catch to Go” offerings.
As her business grew, Kathleen decided it was time to expand, opening the second Kathleen’s Catch in Milton in 2015. It seemed natural for her daughter, Sara Hulsey, to run the second location. Ashley Sanchez, Sara’s friend since childhood, came on board to manage the Johns Creek location. Kathleen has always felt her staff should be knowledgeable about their products.
“I have a map on the wall in each store to show customers where our products come from, and it is also a good visual for customers to see where our fish does not come from,” Kathleen said. “We get fresh seafood delivered every day except Sunday, but we are open on Sundays.”
Kathleen said that big retailers are required to show COOL (Country of Original Labeling), but as a small business, she is not required to do so.
“I do it anyway because I am proud of the sources of my seafood. I do my best to find out as much as possible about where our product comes from. I can often tell you the captain’s name of the boat that actually caught the fish.”
It is precisely that sort of attention to detail that continues to set Kathleen’s Catch apart from other seafood sources.
Kathleen’s Catch also serves customers in a personalized way, filling hundreds of special orders every year — especially around the holidays.
“My customers know if they are planning a special dinner or event they can call us and we will help work out the menu together based on what is available at the time of their party.”
Whether you are planning a special dinner party, or just want to enjoy some fresh seafood, head on over to Kathleen’s Catch in Milton or Johns Creek and experience the closest thing to catching your own seafood as possible.
For more information, visit kathleenscatch.com.