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Santa Barbara Recs

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I went to college in SB 5 years ago so it's been a long while. Going up this weekend with the boyfriend and staying around State Street. I realized how little I ventured out during my college days and now that my tastes have matured (e.g. house parties on DP aren't gonna do it for me anymore) I am looking for some suggestions for an early dinner/late lunch (going to a concert that starts at 6) probably a good happy hour would be ideal. I have heard about The Neighborhood and Brewhouse via online reviews but they seem a bit off the path. Also looking for a post-concert spot to continue boozing, but I realize this weekend is graduation weekend for UCSB. It would be a horror to end up at a club packed with co-eds so nothing like Sharkeez. Back in college we used to frequent Madison's which is along the lines of what I'm looking for, but I have also heard some things about James Joyce and Velvet Jones. Some place with no cover and good music (maybe even live) where we can hang out at the bar all night. For Saturday breakfast, Beachbreak Cafe sounds nice but I've never been. Totally not looking for foodie-oriented spots (e.g. Hungry Cat)--we have a high appreciation for cheap beer, good food, chill but cool environments, and reasonable prices. Oh and I have never been to Butterfly Beach but I have heard it is THE beach to go to in SB so wondering if anyone has been there as well. Thanks!!

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  1. From one UCSB grad to another, Chad's is excellent and 2 blocks off the end of State. If you can make time and want to do something nice for yourself, go - excellent food and awesome boozing atmosphere. Holdren's is another solid spot, it's on State. This would be my pick of place to go if rushed. Good food, not too pricey and if you sit at bar, the bartender Brad will take care of you two and you'll have a blast. Not sure how early they are open or if they go from lunch through to Dinner, check. Brewhouse is a fun spot, but the service can be real, real bad and if you are looking for something a bit more elevated than a DP type of place, look elsewhere. If you're looking for cheap food and cheap beer, it could be your place though. Good luck. Butterfly beach is awesome.

    1 Reply
    1. re: mjill

      Chads has been closed for a while now...though the owners continue to run Sambos on the beach- great breakfast- most of the time there is a wait- but hard to complain as you are at the beach watching the bikers and joggers go by...

      SB Bowl? I would stay close to that end of town- maybe Carlitos, Cafe Buenos Aries or even Harrys in Loreto Plaza- quick trip over Anapamu to the bowl.

      Anything on State Street, near the bar hopping 21 yr olds will be dissapointing if you are not loaded your self. Cafe Luck perhaps for afterwards for food and drinks?

      Butterfly Beach is nice, but there are no restrooms FYI , and the parking can be atrocious- especially if there is a function at the Biltmore of any type.