Exclusive: Plans Announced for Closed Garfield Restaurant

The former Mexican restaurant, Verde, will transition to Prairie, an eatery featuring a heartland cuisine that includes beef and bourbon.

Photos by Laura Petrilla

When Jeff Catalina decided to close Verde in Garfield at the end of September, he also planned to quickly turn the space into a new restaurant. Monday, he announced what it’s going to be.

“It’s American Heartland. It’s a little bit comfort food, with dishes that’ll feel familiar,” he says of the new concept, which is called Prairie.

Prairie’s executive chef is Justin Lewis, who was also the chef of Verde. Catalina says that Lewis is still in the process of menu development, but that diners can expect an array of appetizers, shared plates, sandwiches and main courses. “They’ll be a burger, of course, and in the great tradition of American comfort food, a really great steak,” he says. 

Beef for the burgers and steak are going to be sourced from Jubilee Hilltop Ranch in Bedford County.

In keeping with the restaurant’s Americana focus, Prairie’s bar program, run by Shane Morrison (Acacia), is going to be bourbon-heavy. Brian Hammond, the former chef of Restaurant Echo in Cranberry, will also work the bar. “There’s an opportunity for a restaurant to step up and showcase a really good cocktail program in the East End,” Catalina says.

Expect a complete refurbishment of the interior to reflect the theme. That redesign will include a horseshoe-shaped bar from Iron Eden as a focal point. The restaurant will be open seven days week with dinner nightly, lunch on weekdays and brunch on weekends. It soft opens the first week of November.

I’ll have more as the space develops.


Categories: The 412