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May 14, 2012 04:53 PM

Inexpensive/Casual Eats near Santa Barbara Bowl?

Heading up to Santa Barbara in a few weeks to catch Beck play at the Santa Barbara Bowl. Looking for somewhere inexpensive and casual to grab a quick, yet delicious bite prior to and near the show. Preferably somewhere that also has tasty adult beverages.

One place that has come up on my searches is Jane. Sounds like they may have a tasty burger. That could work, but wondering what other options we might have.

Any and all recommendations would be most appreciated!

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  1. Jane is not close by unless you want a long walk - mile or so. Restaurants on Milpas Street are close by - the Bowl is about the 1100 block of North Milpas Street, so you can gauge the distance by the address on Milpas Street. Choices over there range from modest but tasty Chinese at Shanghai, various Mexican entries from seafood to "organic - no lard" and the Julia Child famous La Superica Taqueria.

    Parking is tight at the Bowl so it is best to find a parking space first and then wander a bit without a car to get something to eat on Milpas and then walk back to the Bowl when it is time for the show with the understanding it is quite a walk up hill once you get to the bowl and your trip back from any Milpas Street restaurants is also a bit uphill too - but not as much as the trek up to the Bowl itself. It is a wonderful way to spend an evening. Will be doing it shortly ourselves but for the Beach Boys!

    Most restaurants have beer and wine, but i you want more adult than that you will need to check if they serve the stronger stuff. If not there are some dive bars on Milpas to get your hit there.

    2 Replies
    1. re: glbtrtr

      We don't mind walking a mile. We plan on leaving our car parked at our hotel and just walking around downtown, and then walking or cabbing it to the bowl.

      Definitely interested in places that serve more organic, local, sustainable fare if possible. Are there any specific ones that you recommend?

      1. re: brian j

        Current favorite for lunch downtown that meets your criteria is Scarlett Begonia in Victoria Court and then it is just a walk down East Anapamu Street (between 1100-1200 blocks) to the Bowl -- though Scarlett Begonia does not have a hard liquor (adult beverages?) license.

        Anything in the 1000-1300 block of State Street or the surrounding side streets is a pretty good choice - lunch or early dinner? Most SB restaurants try to be socially conscious. SilverGreens is one of the more stringent about this and has many loyal fans, though obviously they do not have a hard liquor license either.

        Hotel Canary would have a hard liquor license and does Hungry Cat which has a very good reputation for its cocktails and food, but come at a high price and inconsistent reports of service and lately for the food too. The Cat has a distinct casual LA vibe. Not sure where or if there is a hard liquor - organic and sustainable combo restaurant is downtown. But most do have beer and wine.