Steve’s Steakhouse is a verifiable Catalina Island institution. Found at 417 Crescent Avenue in Avalon, the family-run restaurant is close to most of the island’s hotels and offers stunning views of Avalon Bay from its second floor position. It isn’t just the location and views that make this place so popular, however. The service is friendly and courteous, and more importantly, the food is of considerable quality.
Steve’s Steakhouse is named after the restaurant’s founder – Steve Bray. A fourth generation islander, Steve got his start in the restaurant industry in the 1970s, apprenticing at many seafood eateries, both on Catalina Island and the California mainland. In 1986, Steve took on a management position at Avalon’s well-known Armstrong’s Seafood Restaurant, and it was this job that really helped him learn about the ins and outs of the restaurant business. A successful restaurant partnership followed in the 1990s, and by 2001, Steve was ready to purchase his own eatery. And thus, Steve’s Steakhouse was born.
At Steve’s Steakhouse, USDA Choice steaks and fresh seafood take center stage. Catalina swordfish is their specialty, and diners can also interest themselves in some Avalon-style shrimp or slow-cooked baby back ribs. Soups and salads are also available, as are a variety of tempting appetizers. Examples of appetizers include calamari strips, potato skins, sauteed mushrooms, sashimi, and oysters Rockefeller. Complementing the food at Steve’s Steakhouse is an extensive wine list, and guests can order “killer drinks” at the full bar. While savoring their food and beverages, patrons of Steve’s Steakhouse can also relish the aforementioned views of Avalon Harbor and enjoy the restaurant’s museum-quality photos, which offer insight into Catalina Island history.
It should be noted that in 1988, Steve Bray founded the “Just For the Halibut, Just For the Kids Tournament.” This annual fishing competition takes place the first weekend of June, and all proceeds go to Catalina Island kids programs. To-date, the yearly event has raised approximately $500,000. For his contributions to the community of Avalon and Catalina Island in general, Steve Bray was awarded the “2011 Humanitarian of the Year” award by the Southern California Restaurant Writers, Inc.