California State Senator Connie M. Leyva (D-Chino) recognized Riverside Grill in Chino as the 2015 20th State Senate District “Small Business of the Year”.
First opening in 1997, Riverside Grill has remained a popular family-run Inland Empire eatery for almost two decades. Founded by brothers Rodrigo and Al Avila—as well as a third brother that is no longer affiliated with the restaurant—Riverside Grill started as a counter service restaurant though was renovated to sit 80 people with a full service bar known for its extensive local craft beer selections.
Originally from the state of Michoacan in Mexico, the Avila family immigrated to the United States seeking a better quality of life. The Avila brothers began working in the restaurant business as dishwashers and cooks while simultaneously attending high school. Though the brothers left the restaurant business for a time after high school, they came back together in 1997 to open Riverside Grill. Rodrigo and Al Avila sacrificed for many years as the restaurant grew by balancing their family responsibilities while working their full-time jobs, as well as managing the restaurant.
“Riverside Grill has distinguished itself over the years as a vital part of the 20th State Senate District that prides itself on helping local community and youth groups. Beyond being a quality family-run restaurant, it is also a comfortable place where employees greet customers by their first name as they walk in and even know their order before they sit down,” Senator Leyva said. “The Avila brothers have worked hard for many years and Riverside Grill truly deserves this recognition as the 20th State Senate District ‘Small Business of the Year’.”
The Riverside Grill supports Isaiah’s Rock, a local non-profit in Chino that feeds and helps the homeless, as well as sponsors a “Tip-A-Cop” fundraiser where Chino Police Department officers participate as restaurant servers and then a local non-profit serving children receives 20% of that night’s sales. The Riverside Grill also supports events at local area high schools, including Chino High School and Don Lugo High School, as well as local sports teams such as the American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO).
Al Avila lives in Ontario with his wife, Maria, and two daughters Rebecca and Clarissa. Rodrigo Avila lives in Pomona.
Senator Leyva recognized Riverside Grill at a California Small Business Day luncheon held Wednesday in Sacramento.