Arizona Republic names Charlie Clark’s Steakhouse 7th oldest dining establishment in Arizona
A feast of history Arizona’s oldest restaurants stand the test of time.
excerpt From Travel & Explore - AZCentral.com by Roger Naylor - Apr. 3, 2011
Charlie Clark’s Steakhouse, Pinetop-Lakeside, 1938
Eating at Charlie Clark’s Steakhouse back in the day was about as far from fast food as you could get.
A customer was expected to bartend while Clark prepared the meal. And because nothing was premade, that meant steaks had to be cut, potatoes had to be peeled and salads had to be assembled.
Before Clark bought the property, it had been a high-country version of a speakeasy: a log cabin selling moonshine from a barrel. Following the repeal of Prohibition in 1933, the owner operated a cafe, but maybe his heart just wasn’t in a legitimate joint. He sold to Clark in 1938.
The business grew, reaching the point that customers no longer had to sling the suds while Clark grilled their steaks.
Clark died in 1952, but the steakhouse continues to be a popular White Mountain destination. Today it features multiple dining rooms, a bar and patio, and enough memorabilia lining the walls to make a museum envious. Out in the orchard, an open-air bar and dance floor are open in summer.