Viva Santa Barbara, serving modern Mexican cuisine, has opened at 1114 State Street, the former home of Cielito, Stateside and Acapulco. A message on their web site, vivasb.com, describes the business as follows:
“The arrival of Viva has redefined what it means to be Santa Barbara. Garnished by a superb happy hour and unparalleled service, Viva’s transcendence through quality has become a hub for chic Santa Barbara nightlife. Successfully having reinvented authentic Latin American cuisine, our Master Chef David Raigoza has truly personified the meaning of Southern California. Thanks to our Bar Master Jereme Hall, the newly redesigned Viva Lounge takes its place as one of the most sought after craft cocktail venues in Santa Barbara. Here at Viva its simple; you get the ultimate dining experience. The banquet room: boasting exquisite chandeliers, high ceilings and large arched windows, the magnificence of this space and its adaptability is sure to wow you and your guest. This space has its very own entrance, private patio, satellite bar and restroom accommodations. Able to host any type of event, our accommodations include wedding receptions, dinners, graduations, bar mitzvahs and corporate work events.”
Viva Santa Barbara brought to you by a group of investors, that includes proprietor Brendan Searls, the co-founder of Dargan’s Irish Pub in Santa Barbara and Brendan’s Irish Pub & Restaurant in Agoura Hills, Camarillo and Newbury Park.
Some questions I have heard over the years include “room for cream?”, “paper or plastic?”, and “Ginger or Mary Ann?” While wandering the Mesa the most common question I hear is “Vons or Albertsons?” Sources tell me that the market that will replace the defunct Haggen at 2010 Cliff Drive will be… Vons. Before Haggen occupied the space for about 3 seconds this address was the longtime home of Albertsons.
Reader Cris passed the word that Poke Me has appeared as one of the future tenants on the website for Hollister Village Plaza, 7000 Hollister Avenue. The eatery will offer a variety of fish bowls. The base ingredient offerings include white rice, brown rice, half & half, mixed salad and organic baby kale. Sides include seaweed salad, edamame, avocado, crab meat and spicy crab meat. The protein (a.k.a. “meat”) menu lists salmon, yellowtail, albacore, shrimp, scallop, octopus, spicy tuna, and spicy albacore. Tofu is also offered. Visit pokeme.net.
After intense concentration and a wave of my hand over the all-knowing crystal ball, my eatery oracle has revealed a list of food and drink locations appearing in your future:
- 202 State, 202 State St. (formerly Bay Roadhouse Bar & Grill)
- Blaze Pizza, 3925 State St. (formerly Carl’s Jr.)
- Cachuma Lake Café, Cachuma Lake marina
- Cajun Kitchen, 6025 Calle Real, Goleta (formerly Rusty’s Pizza)
- Cito Street Café, 305 W. Montecito St.
- Convivo, 901 E. Cabrillo Blvd. (inside Santa Barbara Inn)
- Corazon Cocina, 38 West Victoria St. (Santa Barbara Public Market)
- Del Taco, Santa Barbara (2 locations)
- Dickey’s BBQ Pit, 7000 Hollister Ave., Goleta (Hollister Village Plaza)
- The Drunken Crab, 416 State St. (formerly Killer Shrimp)
- Dumpling King, 966 Embarcadero Del Mar (currently The Cantina)
- Dunkin’ Donuts, 3 more South Coast locations
- Guicho’s Eatery, 901 Linden Ave., Carpinteria (formerly The Beach Bowl)
- Handlebar Coffee Roasters, 2720 De la Vina St. (formerly Sleep Shoppe)
- HiWI Tropical Fusion, 6555 Pardall Rd., Isla Vista
- Luna Grill, 3925 State St. (formerly Carl’s Jr.)
- Magic Castle, 30 Los Patos Wy. (formerly Café del Sol)
- Mesa Burger, 315 Meigs Rd. (formerly Mexican Fresh Taqueria)
- Norton’s Pastrami and Deli, Goleta.
- Oliver’s, 1198 Coast Village Rd. (formerly Peabody’s)
- Phoevermore, 1017 Casitas Pass Rd., Carpinteria
- Pickles & Swiss, 7000 Hollister Ave., Goleta (Hollister Village Plaza)
- Pieology, 7000 Hollister Ave., Goleta (Hollister Village Plaza)
- Pizza Man Dan’s, 699 Linden Ave., Carpinteria (formerly Tony’s)
- Poke Me, 7000 Hollister Ave., Goleta (Hollister Village Plaza)
- Rusty’s Pizza, 2315 Lillie Ave., Summerland (Stacky’s Seaside)
- Rusty’s Pizza, 4880 Hollister Ave., Goleta (moving from 149 S. Turnpike Rd.)
- Sprouts Farmers Market, 175 N. Fairview Ave. (formerly Haggen/Vons)
- Viva Modern Mex, 1114 State St. (currently Cielito)
- Vons, 2010 Cliff Drive (formerly Haggen/Albertsons)
- Which Wich, 5 South Coast locations
- Unnamed, 7 E. Anapamu St. (formerly Arts & Letters Café)
- Unnamed Asian Fusion, 5892 Hollister Ave. (formerly The Natural Café)
- Unnamed Bakery & Cheese Shop, 131 Anacapa St.
- Unnamed BBQ, 4444 Hollister Ave., Noleta (formerly Creekside)
This just in from Globe restaurant:
“Tuesdays may be for Tacos, but Wednesdays are for WONTONS! Each Wednesday, starting July 27th, Globe at 18 E Cota Street presents Wonton Wednesdays hosted by Robby Robbins. This casual, relaxing and comfortable place to grab expertly crafted cocktails and sample delicious small plate items from around the world is the perfect downtown spot to come after work on Wednesdays. Each week from 5:30-9 p.m. we will have several special Wontons to choose from with a variety of unique sauces to enjoy. Our regular menu features delightful chicken eggrolls and scrumptious veggie pot-stickers, so including some Wontons each Wednesday will be the perfect addition. Specialty Asian-themed cocktails will be crafted by our manager and stellar mixologist Andy Davis!”
It appears that Hollister Village Plaza in Goleta has removed Sno-Crave Tea House from their list of future tenants.
On Friday, July 22, Nona’s Deli opens at 415 E. De la Guerra Street, the former longtime home of Italian Grocery. I called Nona’s to confirm this. Thanks to readers Dad and Steve for the tips!
Convivo restaurant and bar has opened inside the Santa Barbara Inn at 901 East Cabrillo Boulevard. Hours are 7-10 a.m., 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m., and 5-10 p.m. Brunch is available on weekends from 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Call 845-6789 or visit convivorestaurant.com.
Helena Avenue Bakery opened on July 7 at 131 Anacapa Street in the Funk Zone. The menu includes salads, sandwiches, pickled vegetables, cheese boards and salami. Helena Avenue Bakery is open daily 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. Visit facebook.com/helenaavenuebakery/
Restaurateur Larry Mindel and Chef Peter McNee will be opening Convivo restaurant and bar on Monday, July 18th at the newly remodeled Santa Barbara Inn, 901 East Cabrillo Boulevard. Convivo, whose name means ‘to come together,’ is the root word for the Latin term for ‘feast.’ Unlike previous restaurants at this location, Convivo occupies the bottom floor and includes a large outdoor patio. McNee describes his style of food for Convivo as ‘Nomad Italian’ with influences from Morocco, Portugal, Spain, and a little bit of France. “The foundation – our soul – is Italian but our destination is Santa Barbara and the menu draws from different styles and traditions along the way,” said McNee. His menu will feature cicchetti (small plates served in bite size portions), shareable antipasti, house-made pasta, wood-fired pizza and Santa Barbara’s bounty of seafood and meats roasted over a wood fire. Many dishes are served family style and everything can be shared. “Great meals are ones shared with friends and family. Conviviality is a central theme of the restaurant and the seasonally changing menu,” he adds. I asked McNee if he had a favorite dish and was told that he is very excited about the spit-roasted chicken, rubbed with harissa chermoula. Convivo is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Hours are 7-10 a.m., 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m., and 5-10 p.m. Brunch is available on weekends from 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Call 845-6789 or visit convivorestaurant.com.
The latest from Pascucci, 6920 Marketplace Drive in Goleta:
I hope you are having a great Summer! A few updates on Pascucci at the Marketplace: We are all settled in, so we have now introduced our lunch and dinner specials, which are very popular at our downtown location. Our lunch special is a choice of 2 salads, choice of 3 entrees, with a soft drink or SB Roasting Company mango iced tea for $12.99. It’s a great option for folks that have to be in-and-out quickly. Our dinner special is a choice of 2 salads, choice of 3 entrees, choice of a glass of house wine or any tap or bottled beer, and a choice of 3 desserts, all for $21.99 ($23.99 on weekends). Also, we will be starting Happy Hour next week, 7 days a week, from 3-5:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday and 3-5 p.m. Friday-Sunday. We have a huge dog-friendly patio, which is now more shady with the new awning installed.
Here is a list of local food establishments that have closed in the last year:
- July 2016: India Club, 5701 Calle Real, Goleta; Yankee Noodle, 214 State St. (now American Ale 02)
- June 2016: Nimita’s Cuisine, 508 East Haley St.; Sam’s To U, 5979 Hollister Ave., Goleta
- May 2016: Cafe Int’L, 5664 Calle Real, Goleta; Subway, 3613 State St.
- April 2016: Jimmy John’s, 909 Embarcadero del Mar, Isla Vista; Seagrass, 30 E. Ortega St. (now Oveja Blanca); Taqueria El Pastorcito, 2009 De la Vina St.
- March 2016: Book Ends Café, 602 Anacapa St.; Café 154, 4151 Foothill Rd.; Mexican Fresh Taqueria, 315 Meigs Rd.
- February 2016: Boondocks, 4444 Hollister Ave., Noleta; La Hacienda, 298 Pine Ave., Goleta; Tamales-To-Go, 20 East Cota St.
- January 2016: 416 State, 416 State St.; Carl’s Jr, 3925 State St.; Cielo Bar and Grill, 5096 Carpinteria Ave., Carpinteria (now The Nugget); Creekside, 4444 Hollister Ave., Noleta; Mattei’s Tavern, 2350 Railway Ave, Los Olivos; Nuance, 119 State St.; Rusty’s Pizza, 6025 Calle Real, Goleta (moved down the street); Tacos El Rey, 5 W. Haley St. (now Hana Kitchen); The Bourbon Room, 4444 Hollister Ave., Noleta; The Fig Grill, 5940 Calle Real, Goleta; Union Ale Brewing Co., 214 State St. (American Ale 02)
- December 2015: Lovin Oven, 6578 Trigo Rd., Isla Vista (now 805 Kabob); Mama Lu, 415 N. Milpas St. (now Stone Age Restaurant); Marmalade Café, 3825 State St.; Taco Bell, 3771 State St (now Dunkin Donuts).
- November 2015: Beach Bowls, 901 Linden Ave., Carpinteria; Bistro 1111, 1111 E. Cabrillo Blvd. (now Marbella); Boochies, 113 W. De la Guerra St. (now Green Table); El Torito, 29 E. Cabrillo Blvd.; Haggen, 163 S. Turnpike Rd., Goleta (now Vons); Haggen, 165 N. Fairview Ave. Goleta; Haggen, 2010 Cliff Dr.; Haggen, 3943 State St. (now Smart & Final Extra!); Haggen, 850 Linden Ave., Carpinteria (now Smart & Final Extra!); Kogilicious, 956 Embarcadero Del Norte, Isla Vista (now Santa Ynez Burrito)
- October 2015: Blue Agave, 20 E. Cota St. (now Nectar); Crazy Good Bread, 4191 Carpinteria Ave., Carpinteria; Culture Counter, 38 W. Victoria St.; Fresh & Easy Market, 336 N. Milpas St.; iGrill Korean BBQ, 3132 State St. (now Kimchi)
- September 2015: Arch Rock Fish, 608 Anacapa St; Crazy Good Bread, 38 W. Victoria St.; Las Brasas Mexican Grill, 5915B Calle Real, Goleta (now China King); Muddy Waters Coffee House, 508 E. Haley St.; Sojourner Café, 134 E. Canon Perdido St.; Wings Restaurant, 4427 Hollister Ave., Noleta (now Taqueria El Pastorcito)
- August 2015: Sublime, 901 N. Milpas St.; Crushcakes & Café, 1150 Coast Village Rd., Montecito (now Bree’osh Cafe & Bakery); Crushcakes & Café, 6533 Trigo Rd., Isla Vista (now Kol’s Café); Simply Pies, 5392 Hollister Ave., Goleta (now Crushcakes)
- July 2015: Barbecue Company, 3807 Santa Claus Ln., Carpinteria (now Borrello’s Pizza); Boca del Rio, 318 N. Milpas St. (now Los Altos); Fresco Cafe North, 5940 Calle Real, Goleta; Panera Bread, 700 State St.; Taqueria Buen Gusto, 4835 Carpinteria Ave., Carpinteria.
Reader Dad sent me an update about Nona’s Deli coming to 415 E. De la Guerra St.:
Ran into [Nona's owner] Edith rolling the aisles in Costco aboard her scooter last week. She indicates that Nona’s (former Italian Grocery) is ready to reopen as soon as ABC issues her permit. Recent walk by did not reveal application posted. Guarded optimism that it will be open in our lifetime.
Here is a list of local food establishments that have opened in the last year:
- June 2016: Angel Oak at the Bacara Resort, 8301 Hollister Ave., Goleta; Dunkin Donuts, 3771 State St.; Rusty’s Pizza, 111 State St.; The Nugget, 5096 Carpinteria Ave., Carpinteria
- May 2016: Le Petit Bistrot, 532 State St.; Little Kitchen, 17 West Ortega St.; Nook, 120 Santa Barbara St.; Phamous Café, 7127 Hollister Ave., Goleta; Smart & Final Extra!, 3943 State St.; Zizzo’s Coffeehouse & Brew Pub, 7060 Hollister Ave., Goleta
- April 2016: Ike’s Love & Sandwiches, 6530 Seville Rd., Isla Vista; Jane, 6920 Marketplace Dr., Goleta; Oveja Blanca Restaurante, 30 E. Ortega St.
- March 2016: 805 Kabob, 6578 Trigo Rd., Isla Vista; Fire & Ice Cafe, 971 Embarcadero del Mar, Isla Vista; Hana Kitchen, 5 W. Haley St.; Santa Ynez Burrito, 956 Embarcadero Del Norte, Isla Vista; Smart & Final Extra!, 850 Linden Ave., Carpinteria
- February 2016: Green Table 113 W. De la Guerra St.; La Bella Rosa Bakery,7127 Hollister Ave.#18, Goleta; Nimita’s Cuisine 508 East Haley St. (now closed); Pascucci, 6920 Marketplace Dr., Goleta; Rusty’s Pizza, 5934 Calle Real, Goleta; Taqueria El Pastorcito, 4427 Hollister Ave., Noleta; The French Press – Goleta 250 Storke Rd, Goleta; Yankee Noodle 214 State St.
- January 2016: Boondocks, 4444 Hollister Ave. (now closed); Gandolfo’s New York Delicatessen, 718 State St.; Home Plate Grill, 7398 Calle Real, Goleta; Nothing Bundt Cakes, 5784 Calle Real, Goleta
- December 2015: Fernando’s Churros & Restaurant, 316 N. Milpas St. (in the back); High Sierra Grill & Bar, 521 Firestone Rd. Goleta; Sachi Ramen, 721 Chapala St.; Smart & Final Extra!, 7090 Hollister Ave. Goleta; Stone Age Restaurant, 415 N. Milpas St.; Wildwood Kitchen, 412 East Haley St.
- November 2015: 805 Boba, 213 Paseo Nuevo; China King, 5915B Calle Real, Goleta; Marbella, 1111 E. Cabrillo Blvd. (formerly Bistro 1111); Subway, 1936 State St.
- October 2015: Bree’osh Cafe & Bakery, 1150 Coast Village Rd., Montecito; Caffe Primo, 516 State St.; Farmer Boy, 3427 State St.; Kanaloa Seafood Kitchen & Market, 715 Chapala St.; Kimchi Korean Restaurant, 3132 State St.; Lucky Dragon, 6831 Hollister Ave., Goleta; Nectar, 20 E. Cota St.; Zizzo’s Caffe & Brew Pub (inside Ice in Paradise), 6985 Santa Felicia Dr., Goleta
- September 2015: Borrello’s Pizza and Pastaria, 3807 Santa Claus Lane, Carpinteria; Kol’s Cafe, 6533 Trigo Rd., Isla Vista; On the Alley, 7038 Marketplace Dr, Goleta
- August 2015: Crushcakes, 5392 Hollister Ave., Goleta; Rebar Coffee, 214 State St.
- July 2015: Globe, 18 E. Cota St.; Los Altos, 318 N. Milpas St.; The Fig Grill, 5940 Calle Real, Goleta (now closed); The Nugget, 21 W. Victoria St.
Snow cone specialist Shave It, which opened in September 2014 at 6530 Seville Road, has closed their Isla Vista store.
Reader Annie passed the word that Yankee Noodle, which opened just 4 months ago in the former home of Union Ale, is now known as American Ale 02. The first location of American Ale opened at 14 East Cota Street in May, 2013.
Readers Cyndie and Mike let me know that The India Club restaurant at 5701 Calle Real in Goleta has closed. The eatery opened in October 2011.
A Vietnamese restaurant named Phoevermore is coming to 1017 Casitas Pass Road in Carpinteria. The building was empty when I stopped by recently so it might not be open for awhile. Neighboring businesses in the Casitas Pass Shopping Center (also known as Shepard Place Shops) include Domino’s, Hugo’s, Pee Bee & Jay’s, Rudy’s, Subway, Taco Bell, Uncle Chen, and YoYumYum.
Reader Primetime passed the word that Guichos Eatery, offering “Fresh Italian Take-Out” – is coming to 901 Linden Avenue in Carpinteria, the former home of Beach Bowls which closed last November. “They have two locations in San Clemente. Inside they have some big kitchen appliances that have been delivered including what looks to be some kind of sausage maker. No word on when they’re going to be open but there’s some talk of possibly by the first week in October,” said Primetime. Visit guichos.com.
Photo by Primetime
This just in from Globe restaurant in downtown Santa Barbara, which opened last summer:
I just wanted to give you an update on Globe, a unique small plates lounge, located at 18 E. Cota Street. We have our 1 year anniversary coming up next month (July 31), and are excited to announce our new manager, Andy Davis, has some fun stuff planned to celebrate. He has been on board for about two months, and has already made some great changes. He has re-vamped our cocktail list, extended our evening hours for summer, and stream-lined the menu. Our kitchen manager Ignacio Orozco is now preparing weekly specials. Andy will be putting together some fun specials to celebrate our 1 year anniversary, and some special promotional nights.
We’ve had a great year, and would love for you to come down to meet Andy (if you don’t already know him, he seems to know everyone in town, as you do!) and we have plenty of comfy couches for your little one to roll around on.
805 Kabob Mediterranean Bakery & Cafe has opened at 6578 Trigo Road in Isla Vista, the former home of Lovin Oven, Cafe International and Fresh Wok. The menu includes Kabobs (chicken kabob, chicken kafta, beef kabob, beef kafta, lamb kabob, lamb kafta, combo plate and Mediterranean plate), Mini Plates, Pita Wraps (chicken pita, lamb kafta pita, beef kafta pita, gyros, chicken shawarma, beef shawarma), and more. Owner Matt Maida tells me that the pita bread is baked fresh daily at the restaurant and that the lamb shawarma, which I am told can be hard to find locally, is the most popular item. Hours are 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. Sunday-Thursday, 10 a.m. – midnight. Call 770-7737 or visit 805kabob.com.
Mediterranean restaurant 805 Kabaob opened in March in Isla Vista
Lucky Penny at 137 Anacapa Street will offer a special pizza initiative to support Youth Interactive, Santa Barbara’s innovative program helping teens explore and discover their creative and entrepreneurial talents. For five days, ending July 1, pizza lovers of any age can design their own off-the-menu “Pizza Interactive,” choosing up to three toppings from a menu of ingredients. Lucky Penny will donate 10% of the “Pizza Interactive” sales proceeds to Youth Interactive. Founded in 2012, Youth Interactive Santa Barbara is a grassroots after-school Entrepreneurial Arts Academy that bridges opportunity and social divisions by providing creative young adults from all walks of life with the keys to self-sufficiency. Lucky Penny serves breakfast through dinner every day with pizza available after 11:00 a.m.
The Montecito Firefighter’s Association will be holding their 21st Annual 4th of July Pancake Breakfast at 595 San Ysidro Road. Tickets are $8 each and can be purchased at the door. Pancakes, eggs, sausage and Green Star Coffee will be prepared and served by Montecito firefighters from 7:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at the Fire District Headquarters. There is no parking available on site, however a drop off location will be available at the base of the Fire District’s driveway. All proceeds from the breakfast go to the Montecito Firefighter’s Benevolent Fund.
Island Brewing Company at 5049 6th Street in Carpinteria is celebrating their 15th anniversary July 8-10. They will have our Anniversary beer release and some fun entertainment including Togen Daiko Taiko Drummers and Tina’s Ports of Paradise Polynesian Dancers. Visit islandbrewingcompany.com.
Fortunately there was no internal damage, and they are open for business as usual, but Mesa Verde restaurant at 1919 Cliff Drive experienced a fire around 11 p.m. on June 23rd, causing $20,000 in damage. Firefighters found flames and smoke coming from the rear of the building and quickly brought it under control.
Angel Oak has opened at the Bacara Resort & Spa, 8301 Hollister Avenue in Goleta in the former home of Miro restaurant. The high-end eatery offers steak and seafood restaurant among many other items on the menu. Angel Oak executive chef is Vincent Lesage.
The Santa Barbara Elks Lodge #613 will host their annual 4th of July Family Fun Fair Celebration at 150 Kellogg Street in Goleta on July 4, 11 a.m.- 5 p.m. The patriotic event is open to the public; entrance is free, and over 5,000 local residents are expected to attend. This year’s 4th of July celebration is held in conjunction with hundred’s of Elk’s Lodges around the United States. Baked goods, hamburgers, hot dogs, and barbecued chicken dinners will be sold for a nominal fee between 11:30 a.m. – 4:30 pm. The celebration offers something for everyone. Face painting and numerous games will be offered for the children, along with Bingo games offered for adults. Plenty of prizes await the lucky winners. A silent and live auction, with a large variety of items will be offered throughout the day, and a raffle drawing will be held at 4:30 p.m., with payouts totaling $3000.00. Boys Scouts Troops 4 and 37, chartered by the SB Elks Lodge, will also be earning hours towards their merit badges by volunteering at the Family Fun Fair, assisting in the children’s games and helping maintain the SB Elks Lodge grounds throughout the day.
A new French restaurant named Le Petit Bistrot opened in early May at 532 State Street, the former home of Verde and Zia Cafe. Owner Salvatore Italiano tells me that the eatery will be having a grand opening and ribbon cutting with officials from the city and from the Chamber of Commerce. There will also be a free buffet. The event takes place on Tuesday, June 28th at 4:30 p.m.
The Santa Barbara Independent’s 7th Annual Sizzling Summer BBQ Contest Winner Showcase is tomorrow, June 23rd at The Brewhouse 229 W. Montecito Street 5:30pm – 8pm. Tickets ($16.92) to the event, which includes a logo glass, a beer, and a sampler plate can be purchased at tinyurl.com/indybbq2016.
This just in from reader Mike: “I tried a new item at The Habit in Goleta today. You can now order your burger Santa Barbara-style. Basically it is a double char with cheese but on toasted sourdough and has avocado. I went ahead and got one with the addition of bacon and enjoyed it. It’s listed on their website so I’m expecting it’s at all locations.”