HOME > Chowhound > California >

Reasonably priced anniversary dinner in Santa Barbara

anb722 Apr 23, 2013 09:03 AM

[Re-posted to fix subject to SB]
My husband and I are doing an anniversary trip from SFO to LA, and our anniversary falls on the day we are in Santa Barbara. We are looking for a special place that won't break the bank, maybe in the $20-25 entree range? We have considered Bouchon, but have been to the other Bouchon locations and want to try something new. Thanks!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. g
    glbtrtr RE: anb722 Apr 23, 2013 09:13 AM

    I would not put buchon in the $20 per entree bracket, but is certainly a nice choice.

    Have you looked at Stella Mares at the Bird refuge - because it has a lovely romantic setting. Or you might want to try GiannFranco's in nearby Carpinteria. Petit Valentin in La Arcada Court is also a lovely setting.

    And the $24 per person prix fixe at the french Pacific Crepes on Anacapa street looked good enough to come back for - four courses I think - small and casual but lots of intimate charm.

    Relais de Paris is also getting some very nice reviews and could fit your price range. Happy Anniversary.

    1. i
      Ian F RE: anb722 Apr 23, 2013 05:02 PM

      While Bouchon may be beyond your budget, it is not related to the Bouchon Bistro in Yountville, Las Vegas, or Beverly Hills. I would highly recommend it if you can make it work.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Ian F
        glbtrtr RE: Ian F Apr 23, 2013 05:17 PM

        If one wants to bust their budget on buchon, I would also then recommend the $50 prix fixe at Downey's, which is a very lovely special occasion place and this is a very nicely priced prix fixe for what you get at this restaurant.

      2. j
        jblee RE: anb722 Apr 23, 2013 11:09 PM


        3 Replies
        1. re: jblee
          glbtrtr RE: jblee Apr 24, 2013 08:21 AM

          Hard to get out of Julienne under $100 per couple, mainly because it is so good it is a shame to waste the opportunity to dine so well.

          1. re: glbtrtr
            jblee RE: glbtrtr Apr 24, 2013 04:57 PM

            I agree with you 99%. But their entrees, although small, are priced from $18 to $27 to my surprise.
            Also OP did not specify the budget. I hope Op can enjoy my favorite restauant in SB so far.
            It is so good to miss imho.

            1. re: jblee
              glbtrtr RE: jblee Apr 24, 2013 05:43 PM

              Even if they just went for the chicken liver appetizer at Julienne, they can quit with just that and still be way ahead. It is pretty fabulous.

        2. g
          glbtrtr RE: anb722 Apr 24, 2013 05:42 PM

          Another nice spot for a celebration dinner, though it has been a while since I have been there, is Louie's in the very historic and charming Upham Hotel which is close to the downtown restaurant zone. Small, intimate and just a lovely restoration of a landmark piece of property in this town. I think they meals run a few dollars less than the more well known ones in this part of town.

          Gulp, me again and it is looking like the new reality of most restaurants is now $25 -30 plus for mains, including Louie's. Occasional choices for under $25, but most are in the upper end of your scale. Thinking also about Opal, but up against the same pricing.

          1. g
            glbtrtr RE: anb722 Apr 24, 2013 05:52 PM

            Cold Springs Tavern just may be the best for price and specialness: http://www.coldspringtavern.com/dinne...

            Show Hidden Posts