Catalina Island Restaurants

Before we start – let me just say – WE LOVE FOOD! On top of that, my wife and I are vegans… most of the time. We do make the odd exception, like free range, hand-gathered organic eggs, some fish, and cheese from time to time. However, when we go on vacation, it all goes to hell at least a few times. Catalina is no exception, and it’s a good place to slip up when it comes to food.

So, what follows is our (and the rest of the Catalina Island Explorer staff’s) favorite places to eat on Catalina Island. Whether you are an omnivore, vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, or whatever, check out the list we’ve compiled. We simply picked the best food based on value, ambiance, island history, and taste. Of course, Catalina is known for it’s excellent seafood, so you’ll see the best seafood restaurants on our list as well.

Ristorante Villa Portofino

Located on Crescent Ave. at the North end of town, Ristorante Villa Portofino is attached to the Hotel Villa Portofino. While the hotel is not my favorite on the Island, the restaurant is surprisingly good – in my estimation – one of the best on the island. Why? Their chef is phenomenal. Last time I was there we made sure to compliment the chef and he actually came out and chatted with us for a while!

The patio offers an ocean view, and inside the Tuscan inspired interior is warm and romantic. The wine list is impressive, so if you are interested in a nice bottle, it’s a good place to go. I go for either pasta or seafood, depending on the nightly chef’s special, and I have yet to make a bad choice. Call (310) 510-2009 for more information and reservations.

  • Fine Dining
  • Steaks, Pastas, Seafood
  • Tuscan Inspired

Armstrong’s Seafood Restaurant

If it’s seafood you’re after, you gotta pay this place a visit. Since 1983, the go to fish joint has been Armstrong’s. Enjoy sweeping views of the Avalon harbor from the patio, as well as the dining room, from their location right on Crescent Ave. The menu includes delicacies like in-season local lobster, sand dabs, swordfish, and sea bass. If it’s steak your after, you’ll fine nothing but the finest USDA Choice steaks. Enjoy drinks at the bar, or peruse their full wine list. Armstrong’s Seafood Restaurant is must-do for and seafood lover. Call (310) 510-0113 for more information and reservations.

  • Casual
  • Seafood, Steaks
  • Kid Friendly

El Galleon Restaurant

Since 1967 El Galleon has offered a fun, festive atmosphere, and a huge menu. Located right on the beach at about the halfway point on Crescent Ave., you can’t miss the live karaoke, and fun vibes. Menu choices include live local and Maine lobster, fresh abalone, and applewood smoked BBQ ribs. This is a great place to grab appetizers and sit out on the patio with a drink in the afternoon, or late into the evening.

Karaoke runs every night from 9pm until closing. Catch Happy Hour from 3pm-6pm Daily until September.

  • Casual
  • Seafood, Steaks, Appetizers
  • Karaoke
  • Delivery

Antonio’s Pizzeria and Deli

Located just 1/2 block from Crescent Ave., Antonio’s Pizzeria and Deli is a 50′s style pizzeria serving delicious crispy crusted pizza’s with slurpy melted cheese. Antonio’s is all about the ambiance, 50′s style red checkered table cloths and classic oldies bring the past to life. Menu items include, pizza by the slice, pastas, salads, soups, submarine sandwiches, as well as beer and wine. Call (310) 510 0060 for more information.

  • Casual
  • Pizza, Pastas, Subs
  • Kid-friendly
  • Pet-friendly
  • Delivery