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Apr 3, 2008 09:34 AM

Santa Barbara Restaurant Help....

My boyfriend and I will be visiting Santa Barbara for 3 nights in June. We will be staying at the Canary downtown and would prefer to walk or take a short cab ride to most places, but we will have a car. Would also like areas with options for pre/post dinner drinks, and maybe places with live music, if possible. We are in our late 20s/early 30s. We would like one romantic/fancy night, one fun/casual, and one maybe somewhere in between. I've been looking into the following (but am open to suggestions)!! My boyfriend is a little picky (no seafood, unless they have steak) and price is not really an issue.

Olio e Limone
Palace Grill
Blue Agave
Square One

Thanks for your help!! :)

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  1. Opal is really nice

    For Fun/casual, go to the Brewhouse, right near the train station. take the Shuttle down State St. Google it for a map to be sure how to get there! Its got great food, brews great beer, and has live music.

    Also think of Taj Cafe for Indian, Find you MccConnell's for ice cream, and see if you can somehow get to Milpas st for Super rica

    I would send you to the SAnta Barbara Shellfish co on the pier for amazing food, but it's pretty much all seafood, I can't reacll any steak. too bad, you're missing out!

    you could try hungry Cat.

    1. Epiphany is terrible - don't waste your time or money there. The roof top of your hotel is a great pre-dinner and drinks place. buchon is right next to Olio e Limone and is often cited as the best restaurant in town. They also have a new one primarily seafood called Sea Grass (yes they have steak) more downtown a bit from this West Victoria Street Restaurant Row. The 1200 block of State Streets and East and West Anapamu and East and West Victoria Strees have the best collections of all types of restaurants. This is a few blocks away from your hotel going north away from the ocean on State Street. The very lively young bar district is going the other direction towards the ocean.

      Romantic night might be at the Biltmore Hotel in Montecito - stunningly beautiful site.

      Up in your area is casual uptstairs at Victoria Square (same blocks) SOHO with live acoustic music and Tupelo Junction right next to our gorgeous new Granada Theater has live music Friday and Sat nights - delta blues combo and southern style food with a California twist. The Moroccan restuarant inside Victoria Square is also very good with enterntainment and arabian nights feel. Your casual night out under the stars is good at Buenos Aires or Carlitos across from the Arlington Theater, also in this very same area on State Street.

      I am a fan of the Pug Burger at the Hungry Cat on first block of West Anapamu for elegant casual. Really superb. Blue Agave not known for its food, but serves up drinks right next to the far more lively and legendary cajun Palace Cafe. I don't know Square One but it gets some good reviews from time to time.

      Just walk in any direction and pick something that appeals to you. All pretty good, none so stupendous that you should not miss. If the weather is fine just walk up and down State Street and let the vibes grab you.

      1. Three nights in June? Hope it is not June 13-15th. UCSB graduation and Father's Day weekend. It may be difficult to get reservations.

        Of the six restaurants you picked 2 are great- Opal and the Palace Grill. The only bad thing is that they are very very noisy. I would recommend Stella Mares, Cafe del Sol (best pepper steak in SB) and the Chase (great Italian food). For lunch, you must try La Super Rica Taqueria - THE BEST Mexican Food!