A FAMILY fondness for fish set the foundation for the first seafood store in a Hillarys shopping centre.
Josh Catalano recently opened Catalano’s Seafood in Westfield Whitfords City, building on more than 40 years of fish mongering in his family and his own passion for cooking education.
The store includes a kitchen where people can watch their lunch being prepared daily or participate in cooking classes.
Catalano, who appeared in the first season of TV show MasterChef, said he had to “arm wrestle” his family to shift from its tradition of simply selling seafood to include cooking demonstrations.
“That took me about 12 months to convince everyone it was a good idea,” Catalano said.
“It is store number seven for the family (but) it’s the first store I’ve had from concept, design; that I’ve had full control.
“Seafood retailing is our forte; it’s what we do better than most people in Perth.”
Catalano said his aim was to show people how their lunches were prepared and different ways to make seafood.
“The passion of cooking is there but my real passion is education – to educate the public on how to do seafood better,” he said.
“You can watch what’s happening, ask the chef questions.”
Catalano said they aimed to provide meals that cost less than $10.
He would also hold evening classes for $50 per person, but those would include $50 worth of seafood.
Coming from a close-knit Italian family, the northern suburbs resident said a life-sized portrait in store paid tribute to his grandfather, Francesco Catalano, who died in April aged 88.