Overview: A 32-year-old dining gem, offers its guests the finest quality shell and fresh wild or line-caught fish available prepared in a variety a ways. Chef Paul Matulich and his brother and co-owner Mark Matulich work hard to ensure that patrons enjoy a remarkable dining experience. They really take the time to develop recipes they're confident customers will enjoy. There are a number of dishes for those who don’t want fish. Steamer’s is a posh yet accessible restaurant.
Décor: The restaurant is swathed in painted-desert colors with high ceilings and crown molding. The large dining room is furnished with comfortable padded chairs with tables dressed in linen. There is a patterned carpet with a raised circular motif and there are several dining areas that are sectioned off to create and intimate feeling no matter where you are seated. In addition to the dining room, one can choose to eat at the bar, or outdoor patio.
Drinks: Wine in various vintages and styles are on hand priced by the glass from $7 to $19 and by the bottle $28 with a Dr. Loosen Riesling to a mind-blowing $839 Bryant Family Cabernet Sauvignon. The full bar offers creative cocktail creations like the White Sangria ($10.50) which is made with Riesling, peach puree, orange juice, triple sec, a strong, clear orange-flavored liqueur, and soda water. Steamer’s is well known for Martinis and one might consider one of its fruit-infused glasses ($10.50). For the beer drinker, there are 24 different types available, including Hofbrau Munchen ($5.50), Warsteiner Pilsner ($6.35), and Chimay Red Label Ale ($9.50); all considered best in show. In addition to fountain drinks, there are specialty sodas and coffee creations from the bar.
Appetizers: Starters include Ahi Tuna Tartare ($15.50); Crispy Calamari ($11.00); Shrimp Rolls ($13.00) and Crab and Artichoke Dip ($16.00). The Mediterranean Roasted Mussels ($8.00 and $15.50) and Steamed Clams ($8.00 and $16.00) are items that are popular with patrons. The Shrimp Cocktail ($10.00) is offered with cocktail sauce or Baja style. Chilled Topless Oysters ($2.85) are served with your choice of cucumber mignonette, pear vinegar or Champaign vinegar mignonette. Ask your server what varieties are available. Oysters Rockefeller ($14.00) presents baked oysters in the half shell topped with spinach and hollandaise sauce.
Entrees: Steamer’s serves a juicy Grilled Bone in Pork Chop ($23.00) with smashed peas, mashed potatoes, braised peppers and onions in an apple cider reduction; Seared Ahi Tuna ($32.75) served with asparagus, fingerling potatoes, braised cipollini onions accompanied with a brown butter and fine herbs demi glace; and Seafood Risotto ($18.00) prawns, bay scallops, Dungeness crab with wild mushrooms and asparagus, with a shrimp stock reduction and a pinch of saffron. Asian inspired Crispy Prawns ($23.00) are served with deep fried coconut coated prawns with sunomono (Japanese vinegar) salad of julienned carrots and squash “noodles.” The fresh fish list includes Alaskan Halibut (32.00), Swordfish ($33.00), White Sea Bass ($31.50); Mahi Mahi ($28.00); and Organic Farmed Salmon ($29.00) which you can have grilled to your liking. Non-fish items include ½ Roasted Chicken ($23.00) with Panzanella salad; and premium aged New York Steak ($41.00 and $32.00).
Sides: The sides include Steamer's Grillhouse Salad ($8.00); Organic Greens ($9.50); Caesar ($9.50); Greek Salad ($12.00); Peppered Seared Ahi Tuna Salad ($21.00) yellow and green blue lake beans, Grilled red peppers, Roma tomatoes, a hardboiled egg severed a top butter lettuce and dressed with a whole grain mustard vinaigrette; and Steak Cobb Salad ($20.00) Iceberg lettuce, tomatoes, avocado, gorgonzola, julienned bacon, hardboiled egg with a balsamic red onion dressed with lemon-garlic vinaigrette. Other items available are Steamer's Grillhouse Chowder ($5.00 and 8.00); Sautéed Spinach ($6.00); Oven Roasted Vegetables ($6.00); Roasted Red Potatoes ($6.00); Mac and Cheese ($6.00); and Piles of Fries ($6.00)
Desserts: Steamer’s has an onsite pastry chef. This is a commitment to excellence with items like the Vanilla Bean Crème Brulee ($8.25); Espresso Gelato and Chocolate Brownie Sandwich ($8.00) served with chocolate espresso sauce with hazelnuts; and Tiramisu ($8.50) espresso soaked lady finger cookies layered with mascarpone cream wrapped in chocolate and dusted with cocoa are made fresh daily. The care the chef takes is evident in the creations. The Key Lime Mousse ($8.50), which is a light cheesecake-style mousse on a ginger snap crust served with blueberry compote, is tasty. The mousse is light and fluffy with the tang of lime intensified by the use of lime zest dotted throughout the dessert. The crust is sharp and peppery, more like gingerbread than ginger snap. There is also a Chocolate Truffle Cake ($9.00) that hides a warm truffle center served with roasted banana gelato and caramel sauce; and Gelato ($6.00) or Sorbet ($5.00). Ask what flavors are available.
Service: I was greeted beautifully by the hostess and my server with big smiles as if they were meeting a new friend. It is the kind of service that replaces your silverware when a plate is taken away so you don’t have to store your knife and folk on the bread plate while you wait for the following dish. Each table gets a quick change with each customer. The servers are knowledgeable and have a passion and energy for the work and seemed committed to the joy of serving its clientele to produce satisfied customers.
Signature Dish: For more than three decades, the Steamer’s Linguini has been unchanged on the menu. This is a clear statement on how delicious this dish is; Steamer’s Linguini ($24.00) is made with house-made linguini, white prawns, Dungeness crab, mushrooms, and garlic lemon butter sauce.
- Steamer’s Grillhouse
- 31 University Ave.
- Chef Paul Matulich
- Cost: $35 to $75