A modern façade brings Avalon, a real New York steakhouse with a bright, beachy porch and dining room décor to the first block on Atlantic Avenue in Delray Beach.
The word must be out about the food. Outdoor seating, including the bar, were already taken by 6 p.m., shortly after their recent opening at 110 E. Atlantic Ave.
No surprise with a “From the Land” menu with dry-aged and prime cuts of filet mignon, New York strip, prime rib, bone-in and rib eyes. The meat is described as organic, grass fed, hormone, steroid, and antibiotic free. Our sample even came with a tiny spoon to taste a piece of bone marrow.
“From the Sea,” we also tasted a delicious miso black cod. Seafood wise, Avalon offers lobster, scallops, halibut, tuna and a whole roasted fish. There’s an organic roasted chicken with jus.
The menu is approachable, with familiar firsts like oysters, chilled shrimp and crab, to contemporary fare from a mild hamachi to ahi tuna crudo with smoked avocado and cilantro I would order again in a minute.
Appetizers range from spicy lobster with sriracha, a pork belly BLT, and charred octopus that was not only pretty but a 10, said our taster familiar with the dish. “It looks so appetizing and it is,” he said.
Sides include one of my favorites, creamed spinach. Their version has bechamel and nutmeg. Chunks of lobster sit in kimchi fried rice. Sides also include truffle Parmesan French fries, roasted honey garlic carrots and crushed fingerling potatoes with kimchi mayo.
Avalon has a full bar with seating offering premium brands from 18 single malt scotch to 16 tequilas. They even offer ports and cognac. And of course, they have their own special cocktails. We sampled a spicy raspberry collins and The Ave, Woodford Reserve with compari, both described as “inventive twists on classic libations.”
A sommelier can advise diners on wines, with four sparklings, five whites, a French rose, and six reds from a Malbec to a Cabernet. A fresh and light Prosecco was a treat.
Avalon intends to set itself apart with the quality of the food, the service and the atmosphere, described as “unstuffy, approachable elegance and attentive hospitality.” Regulars will be greeted by name and their selections known to the wait staff, said Antonello Paganuzzi, of Weston, director of operations.
Our waiter Michael Ford knew the menu, and courses and sparkling water were butlered regularly. Fashionable maitre d’ Mit Amin is a veteran of the hospitality world and even knew two Florida visitors.
“At Avalon, we want you to linger longer, enjoy your time here and not feel pressured to rush your meal,” is how Host Restaurants president and founder Curt Huegel put it.
Reservations and menu at https://www.avalondelray.com/
By Marci Shatzman