In the mid 1990's, Catablu owners Mike and Maureen Catalogna were busy making their mark on the South Florida restaurant scene, a leading culinary region that boasts top restaurant talent from around the world. Managing Fort Lauderdale's ‘best new restaurant in 1997' among several others and training under Florida's leading restaurateurs and award winning chefs, the Catalogna's soon became experts in the areas of mid-to-upscale family dining.
In 1997, with a collective 22 years of restaurant and catering experience and having achieved regional notoriety for their success in the business, the Catalogna's embarked on a search for a location, in which to start their own restaurant. They saw great potential and growth opportunity in a city that was hungry for an electric, casual dining experience. Their search ended in Indiana's second largest city, Fort Wayne.
Ready to raise the bar in Fort Wayne's eatery environment, the Catalogna's were seeking a location in Fort Wayne that would allow them to tap into the values and touch the hearts of Fort Wayne residents. The Broadway corridor, a part of the community that once boasted upscale restaurants, antique stores and boutiques, was about to begin revitalization efforts. The Catalogna's saw an opportunity to ensconce themselves in the local community and help restore forgotten part of the city to- its original charm. They immediately began restoration efforts on one of Fort Wayne's historical landmarks, Cinema Blue, a 75 year old building whose doors hadn't been open for 20 years. Their intent was to transform the old theater into one of Fort Wayne's premier Gourmet American restaurants.
After eight months of planning, refurbishing, and decorating, Catablu opened its doors on Dec.2,1998. Featuring work from local artists, the decor reflected the Catalognas dedication to the old theater's interior integrity, with sophisticated touches including a granite bar, faux finishes oh the walls, and cable lighting.
For another 10 years the Catalognas would operate one of Fort Wayne’s most exclusive restaraunts at the Broadway location. On May 29 of 2009, by the demand of its clientel Mike and Maureen served the last dinner at this location, anticipating the opening of Catablu’s new location in the bubbling Southwest area of Fort Wayne. In the early weeks of July, 2009, they eagerly awaited their loyal and committed following to try a completely fresh and new view of Catablu’s potential with the unveiling of Catablu Grille on West Jefferson Boulevard. With a resounding and flattering response, the Catalognas have found a new location to eagerly serve Fort Wayne.
The Catablu Grille location was remodeled with eclectic, lively, and sophisticated touches in mind, featuring a wine wall with a library style ladder for accessing the hundreds of wines on display for purchasing. Memorable movie quotes painted in a panorama adorn the riser that follows the semicircle bar, giving the new restaurant a touch of the old cinema feel. The ambiance features wine barrel lighting, industrial open ceilings, and walls packed with antiqued wooded industrial molds.
While the Catalogna's are committed to providing the whole package: quality service in a
warm, casual environment, the cornerstone of Catablu is its food. Catablu 's
well-rounded menu , also has more sophisticated entrees and appetizers that appeal to a
wide range of tastes. Along with Mike and Maureen, Executive Chef Tony Valenza
ensures that all items are made with quality, fresh ingredients, preparing all items in-house,
including sauces, stocks, breads, and desserts.
Catablu Grille is located at 6372 West Jefferson Boulevard and serves dinner throughout the week and during the weeks-end, closed on Sunday. Its food and atmosphere are perfect for mid-week: dining, entertaining clients, special events and occasions, cocktails with friends, and carry-out. Its full bar features seasonal house-infused martinis and an impressive range of wines by the bottle and one of Fort Wayne’s finest glass pour selections.