Bay Area/ San Francisco/ Food & Drinks
Published on February 27, 2024
After 22 Years, Castro Seafood Restaurant Catch Announces ClosurePhoto: Steven Bracco/Hoodline

After 22 years in the Castro, seafood restaurant Catch (2362 Market St.) announced that it will permanently close next month.

Catch officially closes March 9 with special dinners planned on its last two nights.

Currently owned by Sanjay Gujral, Catch was opened in October 2002 by David Weiss. Weiss sold Catch to Gujral in 2007.

Catch at 2362 Market St. closes March 9. | Photo: Steven Bracco/Hoodline


At 62, Gujral tells Hoodline that after 45 years in the hospitality industry, it was time to retire. Gujral got his start working as a busboy at the Indian restaurant Gaylord at San Francisco's Ghiradelli Square.

During its two decades in the Castro, Catch was a popular spot for locals and visitors alike to enjoy fresh seafood and cocktails out on its heated patio.

Gujral says he'd been trying to sell the restaurant for some time but there were no interested buyers. Catch employees were his first choice but unfortunately, "none had the finances or interest in purchasing the restaurant," said Gujral. "That option just didn't exist."

"It became evident that sticking around and trying to run a restaurant and the day-to-day grind that the energy both mental and physical wasn't there for me," added Gujral.

"It's been an honor," said Gujral. "That space means a lot to me personally because of the NAMES Project."

"I've had many friends and employees who unfortunately passed away because of AIDS," added Gujral. "That whole aura about that space means an awful lot to me. I'm proud to be a part of the history of that building"

Gujral says he's grateful for all of the employees he's had. "I'm proud of my employees," said Gujral. "That's going to be the hardest thing for me to deal with is not being a part of community and employees lives."

In stepping away from Catch, Gujral says the hardest part will be "not being part of the community and part of my employee's lives." "We're more of a family."

When Gujral announced to his employees last Friday about the closure he was humbled by the fact that all of them said they'd stick it out until the restaurant closes. "That meant a lot to me because some of them have been with me for 17 years."

"It's going to be sad and at the time it's going to be a relief," added Gujral.

Over the last couple weeks Gujral expects to see an influx of regulars at as they say goodbye including friends, LGBTQ activist Cleve Jones, SF AIDS Foundation, and SF Bay Times editor Betty Sullivan.

"This is sad news," said Jones. "Sanjay and the Catch staff have been like family to me for many years. For those of us with a deep personal attachment to the building’s history, it is particularly poignant."

A panel from the AIDS Memorial Quilt on display at Catch. | Photo: Castro/Upper Market Community Benefit District/Instagram


The building was the original home of the NAMES Project, commonly referred to as the AIDS Memorial Quilt. In May 2004, the building was officially designated San Francisco Landmark 241.

In 1993, the quilt had outgrown its space in the Castro and moved to 310 Brannan St. Then in 2000, the NAMES Project Board of Directors elected to move the quilt to Atlanta, Georgia.

In 2019, stewardship of the AIDS Memorial Quilt was transferred from the NAMES Project Foundation to the National AIDS Memorial Grove in San Francisco. In 2020, the AIDS Memorial Quilt was returned to the Bay Area.

The building was also briefly home to San Francisco Supervisor and LGBTQ rights activist Harvey Milk's camera shop Castro Camera from 1978-79 after it was forced to move from its space at 575 Castro St by a rent increase.

Last year, Weiss opened Italian restaurant Pasta Panino (4150 18th St.) with longtime Catch executive chef Jeremias Guerra.

Catch's closure adds a large storefront vacancy to the 2300 block of Market St.

In the past year, a handful of businesses have opened along the block including - Mistr Pharmacy (2301 Market), Entour (2319 Market), Klein, Epstein & Parker (2331 Market), Zona Rosa (2337 Market), and Amazon-owned One Medical (2355 Market).

The block currently has four vacancies: the spaces formerly occupied by Wells Fargo (2308 Market), Mikroblack (2323 Market), Bisou (2367 Market), and Pottery Barn (2390 Market) all remain vacant.