SUBLIME OPENS ON MILPAS

The famous building with a cow at 901 N. Milpas Street has a new tenant and they are open for business. Sublime offers California cuisine but also plans to include dishes from France, Italy, Japan, China, Thailand and other regions.

“Yes the building with the cow is finally open for dinner with espresso drinks, light breakfast and lunch to follow,” says owner Mardy Thompson. “Sublime has a strong belief in good quality food that is healthy for you and taste good too. We are working with local fishermen and farmers to support and energize our community. Craft beers and awesome wines are being served. Bringing locals what we love!”

Sublime is initially open for dinner from 4-9 p.m., closing at 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. On nights when there is a concert at the Santa Barbara Bowl, Sublime plans to be open until midnight. Sublime hopes to roll out breakfast and lunch within a week, starting at 7 a.m.

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RUMOR MACHINE

A rumor swirling around town is that American real estate magnate Herb Simon has purchased Lucky’s restaurant at 1270 Coast Village Road in Montecito from Gene Montesano. As always, this rumor might be completely false or a brilliant forecast of future events. Your call.

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CLAMBAKE

The Hungry Cat at 1134 Chapala Street has announced that their 8th Anniversary Celebration in Santa Barbara will take place Sunday, April 19th
12-7 p.m. The three course menu with optional half or whole Maine lobster includes the best and freshest fare from the sea for $45. Beginning with a Local Rockfish Stew with bacon, fennel and Yukon gold potato, guests will feast on a roasted clambake of Cherrystone and Little Neck Clams, Shrimp, Mussels and Santa Barbara Sweet Rock Crab Claws, served with corn on the cob, cabbage slaw and de rigueur drawn butter. Sides of a Salad of Lettuce, Egg and Lemon Vinaigrette; Fried Zucchini with Ricotta, Parsley and Romesco or Grilled Asparagus with Slow-Cooked Egg and Bacon Lardons can be added for $9 each. Along with the popular Thirsty Cat market cocktails – Luke’s Lemonade, Greyhound Proper, Pimlico and 4 on the Floor, a selection of wines and specialty beers from interesting producers are offered. The Sunday seafood feast concludes with a refreshing dessert of Market Berries, Mint, Honey, Fennel Pollen and Whipped Cream. Full raw bar will be served a la carte including 1/2 priced oysters and cocktail specials all day long.

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PATTAYA UPDATE

This just in from Pattaya at 5918 Hollister Avenue in Goleta: “Hi John, My name is Sukone Sriprajittichai owner of Pattaya Thai Restaurant. Starting today we will close on Mondays. Our new business hours are Tuesday-Friday 11:00 a.m. – 2:30 p.m., and Tuesday – Sunday 5:00 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.”

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WINE CASK FUNDRAISER

Enjoy a lunch this month at Wine Cask while supporting CALM and raising awareness about child abuse prevention in Santa Barbara. CALM is the only non-profit agency in Santa Barbara County whose mission is to prevent, assess, and treat child abuse by providing comprehensive, culturally competent services for children and families. Throughout the month of April, Wine Cask is partnering with CALM through their Charity Lunch Promotion, and will donate 10% of all guest checks during lunch when they mention the local nonprofit.

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GOLETA’S HISTORIC TIMBERS RESTAURANT TO REOPEN

The story goes that following the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Imperial Japanese Navy submarine I-17, under the direction of Commander Kozo Nishino, sailed undetected into the dark waters off of the Elwood Oil Field in Goleta. On the night of February 23 1942 at 7 PM, Nishino’s 1-17 emerged off of the Elwood Oil Field, and he ordered his men to fire at the oil storage facilities. One of shells struck the Ellwood Pier. Much of the wood from the pier was used in building the Timbers Restaurant at 10 Winchester Canyon Road, which still stands now on land once part of Nicholas Den’s Dos Pueblos Rancho. “Tex” Blankenship built the structure in 1952. Many of the timbers still contain pieces of shrapnel from the torpedo bombing.

HJL Group | Restaurant Advisors, has been hired to bring Timbers back to its former glory. “The plan is to include the people in the City of Goleta in the concept and design process, and to restore the building and its memories once again,” says Jeremiah Higgins, Operations Advisor of HJL Group.

Plans include an Incubator Kitchen, A local Deli Market & Pie Shop that will feature all local produce, wine, cheeses, honey, baked goods, pies and products made by local artisan producers only found in Santa Barbara, Goleta, Carpinteria and Summerland. The main dining hall will be recrafted to bring back the family-style dining of the past, offering family music and entertainment. Emmy Award winning flamenco guitarist Benise is slated to headline dinner shows throughout the year.

The neighboring farm is being planted now, with pumpkins, lettuce, and organic produce to be served in the restaurant, Incubator Kitchen, the Market Deli & Pie Shop, and in Barn Shops in the parking lot. The farm will offer “pick your own” tours and have livestock for the kids.

HJL Group has created, advised and opened many local restaurants, including Arch Rock Fish, The Marquee, Rooney’s Irish Pub in Orcutt, and also national concepts such as Santa Monica Seafood in LA and Costa Mesa, and Fleetwood’s on Front Street with legendary Fleetwood Mac drummer Mick Fleetwood in Maui.  Please send inquires to info@hjlrestaurantadvisors.com

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TWO EVENT CENTERS OPEN

The Butler Event Center on upper State Street has closed because the property where it was located, the former Sandman Inn, is being developed into condos. The good news is that Warren Butler, owner of the business, has opened two new event center locations. One is in the old Café del Sol site at 30 Los Patos Way in Montecito which is now called the Montecito Event Center. The other is in the former Sizzler restaurant location, 5555 Hollister Avenue in Goleta, which is the new home of the Butler Event Center. There is commercial kitchen space available in both locations which are taking reservations for meetings and events now. Email warren@butlereventcenter.com.

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LAS BRASAS MEXICAN GRILL OPENS

Reader Matt let me know that Los Tarascos restaurant at 5915B Calle Real, Goleta has closed. The business opened in October, 2009. In its place is a new restaurant named Las Brasas Mexican Grill.

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NEW OWNERSHIP

Reader Cris let me know that there is a new sign dated 4/3/15 in front of Petrini’s Italian Restaurant at 5711 Calle Real in Goleta that indicates it is transitioning to new ownership by Goodland Hospitality, Inc.

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SUPERMARKET SHUFFLE

Several regional Vons and Albertsons will begin transitioning to Haggen Food & Pharmacy. Here is the schedule:

175 N. Fairview Road in Goleta

  • 6:00 pm, Sunday, April 19 – Vons store closes
  • 12:01 am, Monday, April 20 – Haggen takes ownership and begins conversion
  • Tuesday afternoon April 21 – store opens as Haggen

163 S. Turnpike Road in Goleta AND 3943 State Street in Santa Barbara

  • 6:00 pm, Tuesday, June 16 – Goleta Vons and Santa Barbara Albertsons stores close
  • 12:01 am, Wednesday, June 17 – Haggen takes ownership and begins conversion
  • Thursday afternoon June 18 – Both stores open as Haggen

850 Linden Avenue in Carpinteria AND Cliff Drive in Santa Barbara

  • 6:00 pm, Thursday, June 18 – Carpinteria Vons and Santa Barbara Albertsons stores close
  • 12:01 am, Friday, June 19 – Haggen takes ownership and begins conversion
  • Saturday afternoon June 20 – All 3 stores open as Haggen
  • NOTE: The pharmacy at the Carpinteria location will remain open during the conversion starting late morning June 19

On a related note, while at the Vons gas station on Fairview Avenue recently an attendant told me the property might remain a Vons gas though he was not 100% certain. On the other hand, an edhat.com subscriber reports that the Vons Gas Station off Fairview will close on April 16th. The subscriber spoke to the manager at Vons on Fairview and urged customers to use gas rewards before the 16th.

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SUSHI CAFÉ OPENS

28 W. Figueroa Street, the former home of Hennings Cake Boutique (where The Restaurant Gal bought our wedding cake in 2012), is now the home of Sushi Café which is brought to you by Sushi Teri owner Laxman Perera. Thanks to reader Mick for the tip.

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STEVE GETS A NEW NAME

Last February the owners of Steve’s Patio Café at 3007 De la Vina Street closed the business for a few weeks to renovate the kitchen and work on ADA compliance for the patio. Apparently the name received an overhaul as well because the eatery is now known as Terraza Café. This restaurant is not affiliated with Costa Terraza at the Santa Barbara Airport.

Steve’s fans will be happy to know that the full menu of Steve’s Patio Café is still available for breakfast and lunch. For the first time, however, dinner is now being offered. Mexican cuisine is available nightly from 4 p.m. – 9 p.m. Thanks to readers Jim and Steve for the tips.

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CONFIRMED: TRIO OF RESTAURANTS COMING TO CAMINO REAL MARKETPLACE

This just in from Camino Real Marketplace:

John,

I can confirm that we have signed a lease for Brophy’s On The Alley. They are taking the old Gina’s Pizza space.

I can also confirm (versus rumor), that Jane‘s at the Marketplace (owners of Montecito cafe and Jane) as well as Pascucci will be tenants.

We are extremely pleased to bring three of the best local restaurants in the community to the Camino Real Marketplace.   Further enhancing the best experience for shopping, movies and dining in Santa Barbara County.

Mark D. Linehan
Wynmark Company

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EASTER SUGGESTIONS

If you offer an Easter meal, or have enjoyed an Easter meal at a local restaurant or hotel, please leave a comment about it here. Many people have asked me for suggestions but I eat mom’s home cooking every Easter so I am not much help.

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WASSUP

This just in from reader Diana:

What’s the latest on Cafe Del Sol? My husband drove right by the building and saw construction workers and the For Lease sign was taken down, and the windows were covered with paper, so he couldn’t see inside.

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RUSTY’S PIZZA COMING TO SUMMERLAND

Reader Foodie Dan sent a tip letting me know that a sign mentioning Rusty’s Pizza has appeared at 2315 Lillie Avenue in Summerland, the current home of Stacky’s Seaside. The very next day reader Meghan passed me this message:

“Stacky’s Seaside in Summerland is in the process of changing ownership to Rusty’s Pizza Parlor. An official sign is posted on the porch and SB News-Press had printed the official public notice, for both the transfer of business and transfer of liquor license. The current owner was working the register today and many regular customers were asking questions and giving him their blessings. My understanding is that he is happily retiring.  He is not sure what Rusty’s will do to Stacky’s once the transfer of ownership is complete.”

I contacted my good friend Tyler Duncan, owner of Rusty’s Pizza, and asked him if what my readers say is true. Duncan responded:

“Your tip is correct! We are very excited about Rusty’s Summerland!”

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SUSHI CAFÉ TO OPEN DOWNTOWN

Reader Brendan shared some words of wisdom:

“Doesn’t look like it’s actually open yet, but a sign for Sushi Café has appeared in the window of the former Henning’s Cake Boutique on the ‘00’ block of West Figueroa Street.”

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DENNY’S DEPARTS

This just in from reader Tim: “Hi John, I drove by Denny’s in Goleta on Calle Real tonight and it was closed. The Denny’s sign is gone and a for-lease sign is up.” Reader Rex of SB sent me similar information. Goleta Denny’s opened in July 2005. Fortunately you will still be able to get a Grand Slam breakfast on the South Coast by visiting Denny’s at 3614 State Street.

This leads me to ask about one of the world’s greatest unsolved mysteries: Which came first – freeways or Denny’s? If you know the answer please let me know.

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OTACO UPDATE

This just in from reader Jen: “Looks like there is construction activity over at Angry Wings in Isla Vista and the chicken mural had been painted over.” Angry Wings at 6530 Pardall Road closed last December and will be replaced by OTaco. During the last decade this address has been the home of Angry Wings (opened 2012), Chino’s Rock & Tacos (opened 2010), Eclectic I.V. (opened 2006), China Garden (opened 2006) and Kung Pao Kitchen (opened 2005).

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VIVA OLIVA

Reader Primetime let me know that Viva Oliva is currently moving from Paseo Nuevo mall downtown to 1275 Coast Village Road in Montecito. Viva Oliva was created by Santa Barbara local Andi Newville, and her two daughters Amanda and Ellie to provide over 40 flavors of premium oils, balsamic vinegars and gourmet foods at affordable prices. Visit vivaoliva.com.

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IGRILL / SUSHI TERI UPDATE

Here is a message from reader Amie:

“Hi John, iGrill Korean BBQ at 3132 State Street has changed hands and is now owned by Sushi Teri (Laxman Perera aka Nikka Marketing). Super excited! Also, Sushi Teri has a brand new location at 213 West Ocean Avenue in Lompoc.”

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY SANTA BARBARA PUBLIC MARKET

Santa Barbara Public Market is celebrating its one-year anniversary with a Spring Fling on Saturday, April 4th from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., and invites the community to a free event to commemorate this exciting milestone with special springtime food samplings, cooking demonstrations, family festivities, and live music. 14 merchants make up the dynamic collective at 38 West Victoria Street.

“The Santa Barbara Public Market is truly a unique experience for everyone,” says Marge Cafarelli, owner of the Santa Barbara Public Market. “It has been fun to watch visitors discover the great synergies that exist across the Market, and shop it each in their own way. We like to think of it as “choose your own adventure” at the Public Market – whatever the experience you’re looking for may be, you’ll find it here!”

Starting at 10 a.m. on April 4, the celebration begins in The Kitchen with a visit from the Easter Bunny, along with egg decorating crafts. The afternoon will offer a springtime culinary festival of food tastings, cooking demos and classes. From 2 p.m. – 5 p.m., a Tasting Passport will be your ticket guide through the market to experience seasonal food tastings at participating market merchants. Get stamped at each merchant, and turn in your completed Passport for a chance to win prizes throughout the day. Festivities continue with Santa Monica Seafood fishmongers in The Kitchen at 2:00 p.m. for a lesson in how to filet a fish, and more. Live music will be available noon to 8 p.m.

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SHALHOOB PATIO UPDATE

When Shalhoob Meat Co. at 220 Gray Avenue in the Funk Zone opened their new Patio cafe late last year they were surprised when the business quickly filled to capacity with customers. Consequently Shalhoob decided to initiate extensive renovations and the Patio café portion of the business will be closed until late May as they go through the permitting process. Shalhoob plans to increase the patio size from 2,500 sqft to 10,000 sqft and offer beer and wine. Here is the official announcement: “We are obtaining permits in connection with improvements to our property and the Patio will be closed temporarily for dining. Our Grand Opening will be just in time forsummer, and when we re-open we will have extended hours and begin serving beer and wine! Shalhoob Catering is still open for deliveries and special events.” Thanks to reader Jonathan for the tip.

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CHOCOLATE DE VINE

The Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center’s annual Chocolate de Vine fundraiser will be held on Saturday, May 2nd at The Rincon Beach Club, 3805 Santa Claus Lane, Carpinteria, from 5-7:30 p.m. For something extra-special, join the private VIP reception at 4 p.m. to sample distinctive reserve wines and hors d’oeuvres. The benefit will offer chocolate creations from local chocolatiers and pastry chefs. The event will feature a judged competition of chocolate creations including Best Tabletop Presentation, Outstanding Flavor Appeal and the coveted People’s Choice Award. Tickets are $65 in advance and $75 at the door (if available). The $100 VIP ticket also includes admission to the main event. Tickets can be purchased by calling 805-963-6832 or www.chocolatedevine.org. Guests will also have a chance to bid on luxurious getaways andmore, in live and silent auctions.

Desserts are provided by Michele’s Tesora, Renauds, Brasil Arts Café, Conways Confections, Stafford’s Famous Chocolates, Secret Ingredient, and Mama Ganache. Wineries include Imagine Wines, Palmina, Brewer-Clifton, Riverbench, with several more to be added as event gets closer.

The Chocolate de Vine fundraiser benefits Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center, founded in 1974 to support survivors of sexual assault. SBRCC offers a 24-hour hotline, crisis and long-term counseling, self-defense programs, and sexual assault prevention education programs. All services are offered, regardless of ability to pay, in English and Spanish. Visit sbrapecrisiscenter.org.

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PASCUCCI FUNDRAISER

Reader Primetime let me know that help for a burned teenager in Santa Barbara was organized recently by Laura Knight of Pascucci restaurant, 729 State Street, in the form of a special food certificate drive. The teen was wounded recently and hospitalized in a fire accident along with other kids. Knight says Pascucci was able help the single mother with her medical expenses in a fundraising partnership with customers. $1000 in certificates were sold last week for $10 each and funds were donated to the family.

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QUESTION OF THE DAY

If you can help reader Viola please post a comment.

Do you have any suggestions on who could host a corporate event for us.  We plan on having 85-100 people.  I am thanking you in advance for your help.

- Viola

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RUSTY’S UPDATE

Multiple readers tell me that construction has started at 5934 Calle Real, Goleta (formerly Takenoya Sushi) which will be the future home of Fairview Rusty’s Pizza which is moving from 6025 Calle Real.

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SUMMERLAND WINERY UPDATE

Reader Jessica let me know that Summerland Winery experienced a fire and were closed for renovations. I called the winery and was told that the fire happened in early February and that smoke damage has caused the business to close until late April or early May.

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DEUX BAKERY

Reader Steve tells me that the family-run business Deux Bakery at 824 Reddick Street is now open to the public. An off-shoot of Scarlett Begonia in Victoria Court, Deux Bakery had been wholesale-only, offering artisan bread, desserts and more. Visit deuxbakery.com.

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AAA RATINGS

Reader Chris tells me that AAA announced their hotel and restaurant ratings for 2015. Bouchon, Harbor View Inn, Simpson House and Fess Parker each received a 4-diamond rating. Four Seasons Biltmore received the top tier 5-diamond rating.

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