FAVORITE CLOSED RESTAURANTS

Last week I conducted an online poll asking readers “Which are your favorite South Coast restaurants that no longer exist?” I received more responses to this poll than any conducted in the 1,511 days (give or take a few hours) since I started this blog. In part that is because it’s easier to respond now that you can post comments in the blog where before you had to send me an email. 

Many of the restaurants mentioned have been gone for decades while some closed in just the last few months. For my column in the Daily Sound newspaper I gathered up the first 100 names mentioned in the poll and sorted them alphabetically.

How many names do you recognize?

1129, 31 Flavors on Coast Village Rd, Aloha Burger, Andrea’s Harborside, Arby’s, Azuma, Bay Cafe, Big Yellow House, Blue Bird Cafe, Bonanza Steak House, Bray’s 101, Brink’s, Carrows, Casa Blanca, Casa de Sevilla, Casa Linda, Castagnola’s, Chad’s, Chanticlair/Irelands, Char West, Charlotte’s Deli, Chart House, Chef Karim, Cliff’s & Co, Coast Village Snack Bar, Dean-o’s, Eggception, El Cazador, El Charro, Epicurian, Espresso Roma, Fat Burger, Feed Store, Flight Line, Fresh Choice, Geno’s, Good Earth, Greek Italian Deli, Green Gables, Haagen-Dazs, Happy Steak, Head of the Wolf, Hector’s, J.K. Frimples, Jasper’s Saloon, Jimmy’s Oriental Garden, Joe’s Café (original), Johnny’s Rib Shack, Josie’s El Cielito, JR’s BBQ, Jurgesen’s, La Chaumiere, La Paloma, La Tolteca (original), Leatherby’s, Left at Albuquerque, Little Audrys, Lobster House, Maggie McFly’s, Mariann’s Italian Village, Mariscos Boca del Rio, Melting Pot, Mom’s Italian Village, Moonangel, Nan King Gardens, Nippers, Norberts, Nu Restaurant, Olive Mill Bistro, Oysters, Pancho Villas, Papagallo, Pascual’s, Paul Bhalla’s, Pelicans Wharf, Peppers, Pescados, Petersen’s Drive-In, Pino’s, Piranha, Plaka, Red Robin., Redwood Inn, Ricardo’s, Rocky Galenti’s, Sage & Onion, Sevilla, Somerset, Spike’s, Storke Road Drive-In, Swenson’s, Talk of the Town, Tea House, Teasers, The Grill, The Zone Sports Grill, Timber’s, Tony Romas Ribs, Whitefoot Meat Market

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166 Responses to FAVORITE CLOSED RESTAURANTS

  1. Vickie Harvey says:

    I’ve lived here a long time and remember nearly all of them. Some of them I had totally forgotten about. I enjoy being reminded of some of my favorite places from years past.

    • Jerry Russoniello says:

      Do you remember the breakfast places Eggception??? and Omletts Etc.??? (sp.?)

      • Audrey says:

        I used to work there.. Summer of ’84. We watched the Olympic Torch really from the store front. Remember those gigantic bran muffins…. we used to sell a ton of them.

      • julie says:

        yup I worked there..then opened PICADILLY CAFE…was my restaurant for awhile…awh, also part owner of prod. company there…awh
        modelled at Brook’s Institute…worked at Cafe Del Sol too…my fav
        had kids…moved back to grand rapids…to raise kids with family
        love love S.B.

    • Gina Marie says:

      Nan King Gardens, the best Chinese Food on lower State Street, owned by the Yee Family

      • Skip Stecker says:

        Audrey, it was called “Club Iguana”

        Nan King Gardens was the best chinese food ever! The Yee family was the best people and there kids who still live here honor the Yee Family. One was a police officer and the other a physicians Assitant.
        We went there every week entering through the back door to say hi to all the cooks and family. Every day for 18 years of my life till I left town. My parents went there every week till it closed! After eating I could walk over a couple of doors and go to Pep Boys to parts too!

        I loved the Yee family for bringing my family many years of happiness!

    • Gina Marie says:

      La Tolteca on Haley St, had the best taquitos, you could buy 10 for $1.00 back in the day!

    • Janine Morgan says:

      Poor Richard’s Pub (where Rusty’s is now). Do you remember
      that restaurant?

    • Jayson says:

      I remember my mom would take us to Brinks.

  2. Paul says:

    So are you going to take the finalists and have a vote off to see which was number 1? Surely your new blog software has a poll function.

    I forgot about Johnny’s Rib Shack, good call on that one.

  3. Jeff says:

    Forgot the Tea House!

  4. Rob says:

    I have a couple “classics” to add to the list, Jade Terrace, formally at the Bird Refuge, Flapper Alley and The Bakery.

  5. Steve says:

    Definetly some Santa Barbara Classics on that list. Restaurant NU was our favorite. The perfect after work destination. No one comes close to this day

    • Jerry Russoniello says:

      You should have been here when it was 1129. I bought David Crosby several Jack Daniels one night (before his liver transplant) Ah the good ole days.

  6. Meridith Moore says:

    Does anyone remember a Mexican restaurant on Milpas, closed in the mid 70′s, may have tried to open in Isla Vista. Didn’t have a Mexican name but it was sooooo good

  7. pjt says:

    loved nu, azuma, chef karim’s & definitely chad’s!!!!

  8. Ted says:

    Does anyone remember the name of the French restaurant that used to be in the spot of Norton’s Pastrami on W. Figueroa in the mid 90′s? I loved that little place!

  9. Kim P says:

    Oh, I’m getting weepy!
    Mousse Odile
    The Tea House
    Azuma

  10. Chip M says:

    There was a mexican food restaurant on Milpas that I went alot with my patents and brother called Tiny’s. The restaurant I miss is the Philadelphia House at Modoc & Hollister. It burned down during the Paint Fire.

    • Meridith Moore says:

      Yes!!! Tiny’s. It was so good.

    • Anthony Estrada says:

      I went there several times in 1986 in my grad school days. I loved it. I thought about it because I still have a few a mint match box from the place. I wondered if it was still there. When you are student, you want a good meal for your date. But you are still on a student’s budget!

    • jefffyzone says:

      before it was the Philadelphia House, it was Colony Prime Rib. It only served Pime Rib and It was served properly with Yorkshire Pudding. It was the Prime Rib you judge all others by. It was the best.

  11. Rob says:

    Some more oldie’s from a couple friends.
    Chili Factory, Queenie’s and The Rice Bowl,

  12. Mark says:

    The Espana down on Cabrillo Blvd served up a lot of margaritas back in the 70′s.

  13. Steve says:

    A trip down memory lane. . .

  14. Susan says:

    The Bakery…ohhhh, The Bakery…..my absolute favorite place for breakfast. The croissants were to DIE for and the view…well, gorgeous. I so miss that place.

  15. Susan says:

    Chanticleer (sp?) on CVR, now Lucky’s…really liked that place too.

    • Jerry Russoniello says:

      If you remember Chanticlair then you remember Geno’s breakfast place that eventually became Tuttis and now?? You must also remember Nippers (many hangovers there) and Chucks of Hi. on Coast Village??

      • Mark says:

        I lived right behind Geno’s and next to The Settlement on CV Circle in the mid 70′s. Their italian omelet was my favorite. Great breakfast hangout. And then Casa Linda just down the street for some great mexican food.

      • Brian says:

        I remember Geno’s (and the owner Geno Bonoir) very well. I was a diswasher there when I was 13. It was called Sams before Geno took it over.

  16. Susan says:

    OK, just one more….Kelly’s Corner….State & La Cumbre. Used to like their happy hour a lot.

  17. Meridith Moore says:

    Mousse Odile and then Odile’s last place: Pinocchio which was where Soho opened and is now Hob Nob

  18. Meridith Moore says:

    Copper Coffee Pot

  19. Nicole szarlan says:

    I would have to say piranha sushi and tuttini I never saw the online poll or I would have placed these two

  20. Steve says:

    The Great Wall, when it opened in the early ’80s, was the best Chinese.

  21. Steve says:

    Pescado’s on Milpas! THE best fish tacos anywhere!

  22. m. lepere says:

    Zelo’s & World Cafe …. Zia cafe

  23. Matthew says:

    The restaurants below remind me of growing up in Santa Barbara, I know they weren’t the best restaurants but they bring back so many good childhood memories. That’s when eating out was always fun, I can’t remember ever having a bad restaurant experience when I was a kid. Sunny’s Pizza London Fog Fish and Chips RG’s Giant Dj’s Burgers Mr. C’s Pizza Michael Anthony’s Pizzeria Chewy’s Scandia Buffet Pioneer Chicken Betos Cantina Soho (original location) Alex’s Taco Stand (dont’t remember the name) where the china bowl is now (the volcano salsa!!!) Carnation Chuck Wagon Buffet Wendy’s (Lower State) Hibachi Pescados Foster Freeze Hot Dog on a Stick (La Cumbre) Bobs Big Boy Zeus & Co. Round Table Pizza

  24. Dianne says:

    Bray’s 101

  25. Spikes on Hollister had exceptional delivery food especially their Clam Chowder and Fettuccine Alfredo. Italian Pizzeria on Fairview; Chicken Parm sandwich awesomeness. I enjoyed Chevy’s too but the Camino Real Cafe especially when new was fantastic. China City buffet…where will I go when it rains now? Paparazzi in Goieta, Greek House in Old Town Goleta, Fresh Choice downtown, Hola Los Amigos at the beach.

    • Paul Slavich says:

      Spike’s had the best potato skins. I left when I graduated
      from UCSB in 1988, and I have not had decent potato skins since.
      They closed a few years later. Does anyone know what is in that
      location now?

  26. I “studied” in SB from 80-83..some of the best times of my life…I’ve eaten, drank ,recovered from drinking, been thrown out of, tried to pick up waitresses, in most of these places…Espana had the best Margaritas in town…clam chowder at chanteclaire,lobster bisque at La Chaumier, Spagetti and meat balls at Joes then hanging out at the bar, there was a place in Carp where you cooked your own steaks Palms hotel?…a great deli on Coast Village Rd that made the best subs on the planet…cant remember the name of the family run mexican rest on either lower De La Vina or Chapala had a couple of tables outside on a little veranda…best tamales and chili relleno I’ve ever had…fond memories steer burgers and the waitresses at Derf’s loved those surf-rats and volleyball girls Dean had working for him…wonder where Jules and her gold VW beetle are now. Funny to engage in this from all the way over in Prague, Czech Republic.

    • Kenny Morelli says:

      Was it El Presidente?

    • Dwayne Newton says:

      The deli on Coast Village Road was the Liquor and Wine Grotto, where I worked. We used to get lots of celebrities coming in for the deli and the really expensive wine.

    • Chuck Samsin says:

      I’m thinking about AAHZZ ( later The Bistro) GREAT place !! And Rocky Galentis and the place by the harbor, cant remember the name but SURE do remember their OYSTER SHOOTERS…..college days in S.B. yep the good old days!!!!!!!!!!! :-D (and I’m thinking about it all in Prague Czech Republic too!!!! :-)

  27. Kenny Morelli says:

    Before JK Frinples I believe it was The Blue Onion. Anyone remember that? Oh and what about The Jolly Tiger on Chapala and De La Guerra.

    • Tad Clark says:

      I absolutely remember the Blue Onion. It was the turn-around spot for the car guys cruising State St. Does anyone remember the Swiss Chalet between Goleta and San Roque?

    • Kathleen says:

      I remember the Jolly Tiger well. I used to work there during the middle of the night on the weekends in the late ’60s.

    • Sue (Cole)McCanlies says:

      I worked at the Blue Onion when I was 17 as a waitress and car hop. Great times. So many young CBs became like my brothers. Course that was in the 60s. Ugh! Oxnard sure has changed. I also worked at the Vogue Theatre and the A & W Rootbeer. Great back then.Sigh…I also used to go to the Carousel Club to dance. Back then you could party and sleep on the beach. Have you ever gone Grunion hunting?lol

  28. jose a gallegos says:

    There also used to be a Jolly Tiger on South Milpas, right about across from the old Post Office. That Jolly Tiger had a full bar. First bar I went to for my 21st birthday in 1977. Sometime later it became Wendy’s, now it’s a Carl’s Jr. Does anyone remember the Cresent restaurant about the mid-lower 900 block of State St.? Old fashion breakfast & lunch dinner.

  29. Charlotte says:

    I grew up I Goleta, so my childhood/ teenhood haunts were D.J’s (best chat burger ever!) Jasper’s Saloon ( God do I miss Abalone!) Brays 101, (my parents would always insist on eating in the lounge area,so they could have cocktails) my favorite Italian was Baltieri’s! ( now Natural Cafe in Old Town) it was so good! And cheap! And I must lament over the Old Timbers! Our whole neighborhood would go there on Maine Lobster nights!! Boy, that was depressing!!

  30. Jeff Kaiser says:

    You forgot or omitted Azteca. I loved that place.

  31. Charles Hanson says:

    Does anyone remember the name of the German Restaurant located downtown? I used to eat there when I lived in SB from 1990-1995.

  32. Charlotte says:

    Was the German Haus the Rusty’s on Mission? It looks like it was built to be a European restaurant.

  33. Charlotte says:

    I often miss the Good Earth that was near Picadilly Square (which was torn down to make way for Paseo Nuevo). Too bad they couldn’t put the mall somewhere else, Picadilly Square was downright charming!

  34. Tad Clark says:

    Nostalgic list, John. I ate at many of these restaurants. Casa de Sevilla was my all-time favorite and their Chile con Queso recipe is on our menu for tomorrow night. Thanks for generating this list.

  35. Mike says:

    These were some of my favorites as a kid in Goleta….Mr. C’s Pizza, Bray’s, Roland’s Nugget, A&W Drive In where Rusty’s is on Fairview, Manila Cafe, Bonanza, Petersen’s, Happy Steak, Swensens, Dj’s Burgers, Pancho Villa. Once my folks took us to Talk of The Town, that was pretty memorable.

    Later on when I moved to SB…Nan King Garden, Frank’s Rice Bowl, Good Earth, SB Cinammon Rolls down by the beach, Little Audrey’s, Woolworth’s counter, Copper Coffee Pot, Frimples, Rose Cafe, late nights at Carrow’s, and for something fancy before a night of dancing at Peppers or hanging out at Head of The Wolf….Teasers.

    Good times!

  36. I grew up in montecito worked at the coast Inn Snack bar in 1969, then i bought it 1974 and kept it till 1982 when the lease ran out. I loved it there for that short period of time. it’s now called the Silver Horn, what a trip down memory lane. I had my share of famous people who loved my sourdough burgers. they were the best!!! people forgot tino’s italian deli best torpedo’s in the world. the Santa barbara news press wrote a great artical on me when I closed on that last day. (sad day} Bobby G.

  37. Dion says:

    Be-Bop Burgers was a childhood favorite of mine. Great shakes and a fun atmosphere.

  38. Charlotte says:

    Besides Jasper’s Saloon, Baltieri’s, D.j.’s Charburgers, Bray’s 101, Scotch & Sirloin, Swensen’s, Pancho Villa, The Timber’s, Heidi’s Pies, The Orchid Bowl, A&W, The Original Habit, Char West, The Good Earth (Picadilly Square) Carrow’s, Italian Pizzaria (Fairview) and Howard Johnson’s end of course….Hot Dog on a Stick (loved those cool uniforms!)….I also miss good old original Mel’s (before Paseo Nuevo took over…sigh..) whaaaaa!!!

  39. Charlotte says:

    Oh no! Not even the same as the original!

  40. Glenn says:

    Where was the old Char West located again? I forgot. The owner of the East Beach Grill and Char West on the pier I believe bought the “franchise” from the original guy. Burger I had on the pier was good(reminded me of a Habit one), East Beach one not so much.

    • lemonjelly says:

      The old Char West was on upper State, sort of around the Rusty’s/Jack in the Box area.

      • Brian Birmingham says:

        Char West was where Taco Bell is now on Upper State. I
        remember when they mowed it down to build that. Sad day . Was a
        great hangout when we used to cruise Muscle cars on Upper State in
        the mid 70s

  41. Lisa Krueger says:

    Great question thank you so much for asking it and the great responses. I worked at the Bistro so was a big fan, loved a little Italian place called Piero’s..trying to remember the hibachi style place on state in the early 80′s oh and surprised no one mentioned the Fish Enterprise when we still had stoplights on the freeway. As I’m in vegas now don’t know if Harrys is still around (stiffest drink in town lol) or that great polynesian bar\restaurant upstairs at the Santa Barbara Inn we would drink those huge crazy blue drinks made for 2…I loved the place up at the El Encanto also…amazing view!

    • Chuck Samsin says:

      I used to work at AAHZZ during college (which became the bistro) I worked there for a short while too …AHZZZ was a great club with a super sushi chef outside named Masa ….

  42. Charlotte says:

    When and where was Bob’s Big Boy?? We would often go there when we were visiting our dad in L.A. Mind blowing chili spaghetti! And I still order that crazy Bob’s seasoning salt (the secret ingredient, believe it or not is curry powder!). I do not remember a Bob’s here in town! I think I was really little when there was an A&W in Fairview, for some reason I just remember a big, round, copper fireplace that one could sit around….is this real or a dream?

    • lemonjelly says:

      The Bob’s Big Boy was around Hitchcock and Calle Real. Before it was car dealerships, it was a Golf and Fun with miniature golf, skate park and arcade games. Bob’s Big Boy was adjacent to that.

      • Glenn says:

        I miss Bob’s in general, barely remember that one and don’t remember the A&W. I remember that good Italian place down the street with their great Calzones where Natural Cafe is now. Wonder what happened to that owner.

        • Mike says:

          Golf n Stuff was pretty cool. I was the king of Defender and Battle Zone. Miss those pinball machines too! Good times!

          • Glenn says:

            My friend tore up his knee on that trampoline/baskettball game they had there and sued them, I hope that was not their downfall! It was great not to have to go to Ventura.

        • Charlotte says:

          Hey Glenn! The awesome Italian place you were referring to was called Baltieri’s and it was my favorite Italian place for years! The original owner is the Presto Pasta guy. But he didn’t own Baltieri’s for very long, he told me that he was young and didn’t have a clue what he was doing, so he sold and split. I told him that he must have done something right, everything about that place I just loved! Sigh…

        • Gerald Bostock says:

          Maria’s Italian or something like that, no? My parents liked it.

    • Wendy says:

      I was an opening shift waitress at Bob’s in 1985. It was packed for breakfast and lunch on the weekends, which made it surprising that it disappeared soon thereafter. Probably just wasn’t the same after I moved from SB! I also worked at the Habit in IV for several years of college. Now there are Habits all over, but I can’t find any mention of that one on their website. I was just curious which was the original, cuz I know there was one downtown which did not seem to be affiliated with IV, which is long gone.

  43. Patricia says:

    Some great posts… Swensen’s in Goleta and at San Roque had the best icecream sundaes – we always had trouble deciding between the Banana Split and the Cable Carfait. Does anyone remember the Epicurean? I believe it was on Carrillo Street; and, later, Michael’s Waterside. The french onion soup was to die for.

  44. Charlotte says:

    OMG! I remember now! They tore all that down to make way for a friggin car dealership!!??

  45. lemonjelly says:

    Btw, you might like browsing the list of SB restaurants going back a century: http://santa-barbara-restaurant-history.wikispaces.com/
    If you have information to contribute, you can send it to the site owner.

  46. My family moved to SB in 1969. Pancho Villa was a favorite. Casa De Sevilla was also a favorite.

    Char West was good. And Sambo’s pancakes.

  47. Sandy Sanderson says:

    Came upon your column, I worked for United at the airport, about 1957-1963 Enjoyed dinners or few cold ones at the Flight Line, Owner Art ?? was ex pilot, Last 40+ years I call Florida home, Back then if you blinked you could miss Goleta, Quick stop about 4 years ago, way over crowded now, .but still pretty area.

  48. JRL says:

    Here are a few more to bring back some memories….
    The Chili Factory, The Silver Spur and The Crabby Lobster (best clam chowder).

  49. Sandi says:

    What was the name of the steak house tucked back in on that little street beside 5 Points Shopping Center and the Animal Hospital? It was on the ground floor of an office building.

  50. Stephen A. Smith says:

    I lived in SB from 1952 til 1978 and remember most of these places. How about Dick’s Den great avacado sour cream omlet

  51. George Curtin says:

    I miss the fresh cut butter top bread from Irene Davis Bakery. Another great deal was at the Snack Shacks (5 burgers for a dollar) on Milpas, lower, and upper State street. There might have been more, but these were the ones my parents took me to. The one on Milpas was across the street from Milpas Raceway (slot car days).

  52. Brimo72 says:

    Wow, a lot of great memories here. A few of my favorites growing up were Bonanza, Char West, Moms Italian Village, Zips Ice Cream Parlor, Sonny’s Pizza, Flying Pizza, La Tolteca, Little Audrey’s, Joe’s Cafe, and JK Frimples. My first job was at The Hibachi on Milpas. As I got older I enjoyed, BB Obrien’s, The Ketch, Club Bistro, The Open Door, Crab Shack, Big Bull Cafe, Sticks, Aloha Burger, el Pollo Norteno, Alex’s Cantina, Acapulco, Maya Restaurant, and Peabody’s.

  53. Santa Barbara Dianne says:

    Skandis Buffet ! And Fresh Choice!

    We need a good buffet place again! Hometown Buffet, are you listening?

  54. KimO says:

    We loved the Philly House that burned down! Everything on
    menu was good. Another place I remember was Feed Store with that
    big salad bowl they would bring you. The salad had sunflower seeds
    in it…really good. We also loved Citronelle that started in late
    80′s in the Santa Barbara Inn. In mid to late 70′s I used to go to
    a natural food restaurant on Milpas that I think used to be where
    La Superica is now or maybe it’s where old Fosters Freeze was on
    Milpas. I used to get a sandwich on whole grain bread that I
    remember it as having layers of cream cheese, guac, black olives,
    sprouts and shredded carrots. Anyone remember the name of this
    restaurant?

  55. San Roque native says:

    Carnation Diner, they had the best fries and milkshakes. I
    still remember watching it being torn down in the early 90s as a
    student at Peabody. Sad day, would make a killing today rather than
    having El Pollo Loco and a verizon store. Also miss special
    occasion dinners at the original Wine Cask and Big Yellow House.
    Woody’s on Montecito (neighborhood now) was a really cool place to
    go, Goleta location is still there but the energy and vibe are
    different (from what I remember at least).

  56. Sam Blethecavitch says:

    The Head of the Wolf…I worked there off and on as well as
    the satellite location in Palm Springs. What a party. Every night.
    Craig Bigelow owned the place with a couple of other investors.
    When the blues band was added on Friday and Saturday nights, bar
    revenues went from $200/night to $3000/night. Paid the blues band
    (Bobby Franklin?) about $150/night. Loggins and Messina used to
    dine there regularly though not together. Partied with Bonnie Raitt
    and band post Arlington concert. Chill Wills, Steve Martin ate
    there. Weekend influx of LA actors. Employees Ty Robb, Bobby the
    chef, Mario and Ed the bartenders, Elaine the Manager, Sharon the
    hostess. Non-stop fun and getting paid for it. Those were the
    days.

  57. Gerald Bostock says:

    Not a favorite, but an ancient: Loops on upper State. I was so young I can’t remember — was it Hope & State? I do remember we hurried out one night when there was threat of a fight involving chains.
    And upper State St. Sambos. I still love the children’s story.

    More on topic: The Mandalay! 1980. Across parking lot driveway from Olio pizzeria; next to Vic Theater. I still haven’t pinpointed address.

    Oysters, where Bouchon is now.

  58. Wendy says:

    I worked at Bob’s Big Boy, and the Habit in Isla Vista. Can
    anyone tell me if this chain of Habits that is opening up all over
    has anything to do with the one in IV. Was the original in IV or
    Goleta and was it a different owner? The new ones seems like the
    one in downtown SB and they don’t have chili on the
    burgers!

  59. dave says:

    Does anyone have any photos of the ceiling and the drawings
    at the old Rocky Galentis. Would like to see if mine was still
    there after many years

  60. Kd says:

    A couple more are Main Squeeze ( it was on corner next to Soujouner) and my favorite Poncho Villa

  61. Charlotte says:

    Pancho Villa was me and my best friends to go place on a Sat. afternoon. We’d ride our bikes down to Calle Real Centre, gobble down free chips and salsa and drink water, whilst reading our menues…only to split when we were full. After about a dozen times or so , we were finally banned. There were always freebees across the way at 31 Flavors! Oh to be 10 again in the 70′s!

  62. Big Al circa 1970-1988 says:

    What about Pascuals on Victoria….the greatest man who ever owned a restaurant…sang to his customers etc and the place in Montecito wher the original “Cougars” hung out….was it Olive Mill Bistro……

  63. Mary says:

    The Good Earth – loved that Planet Burger, Baltieris,
    Skandi Buffet – not great food but they did have good crepes and
    applesauce, The Bakery across from the courthouse and Tutti’s -
    favorite breakfasts of all time. The Philadelphia House,
    taco/burrito place in IV by Giovanni’s – cant remember the
    name.

  64. fred says:

    how about the blue onion, dutch garden, a&w root
    beer, brooms ,sammy’s, just few that an old guy remembered

  65. Gerald Bostock says:

    Dutch Gardens is still with us! Just Google it.

  66. Gerald Bostock says:

    shout out to Big Al, and to PASCUAL! Best pork chops in the world; best Sunday brunch then read and snooze. Waitress Suzie is at Breakwater, right?

  67. tom wilson says:

    Feb 1973,18 yrs. old, just finished my 1st (unsuccessful) semester of college at Shepherd College in Shepherdstown, West Virginia and with a 1966 Impala convertible and a couple hundred bucks in my pocket, I managed to make it to Santa Barbara. My Grandparents lived in Woodland Hills, Topanga Canyon and my older brother was in the Air Force at Vandenburg near Lompoc, so… I settled sort of in between. Fell in love with SB. Got a job at SB Mill and Lumber on E Haley St., worked for a Jose who took me to some great Mexican eateries along E. Haley and took me to see the nude beach in Summerland (great); after a few visits, I finally mustered the nerve to walk the tracks and down over the steep bank to try it out. Fantastic !!. BUT….Can’t remember the apartment complex, but they had an old house that had 3 rooms upstairs, mine w/ a kitchenette, we shared a bath room. It was right up the street from the BLUE BIRD CAFE where I went quite often and enjoyed the jug bands that played all the time. I had just sparked a memory and googled the Blue Bird and read up on the 50 years of Peter Feldmann and realized I was there right in the mist of those five grand years. Also saw Greatful Dead w/ the New Riders of Purple Sage at UCSB. twenty yard line , unbelievable !!! Went back to Shepherd, got a math degree and have taught high school math for the past 30 plus years. Great memories…….

  68. Mark Mason says:

    Left SB in 1980, and it’s been nice to read through the
    comments as there are so many places I’d forgotten. The best
    margaritas were definitely at Espana. Loved the waitresses at
    Derf’s….I clearly remember on stunning blonde, Gaynor McGregor.
    Anyone know if the Enterprise Fish Company is still there? Used to
    spend Sunday afternoon at the bar drinking Sam Smith’s Pale Ale and
    eating their stellar clam chowder. Anyone remember Teaser’s? I can
    still hear Ace Diamond (yeah, that was his name) on the radio
    imploring people to come to Teaser’s where “We’ll spoil you. You’ll
    love it!”

  69. Lori Woelk says:

    How about Sun and Earth natural foods restaurant in Isla Vista in the late 60′s to mid 70′s? For forty cents, you could get a plate of veggies and brown rice! Perfect place for impoverished students. They had an enclosed patio to sit on the floor and eat off of paper plates.

  70. Gerald Bostock says:

    Pino’s! Many work lunches there, and some dinners. (Caroline, aka Mrs. Pino, babysat me when I was a kid. :-))

  71. Dianne says:

    I miss Pino’s very very much.

  72. Charlotte says:

    Legendary Abalone dinners ar Jasper’s Saloon. And of course the locals only Early Bird Prime Ribs slathered in BBQ sauce. I suddenly feel overwhelming sense of melancholy…. missing the 80′s and all the fabulous old haunts. I remember when Elephant Bar opened. Wow! The coolest place in town for Happy Hour and Spikes was right across the street… Good times.

  73. Lori Woelk says:

    Does anyone remember the Somerset restaurant and lounge on Coast Village Road with their famous “piano bar”? I think they closed about 1975.

  74. Richard says:

    I worked at the Head of the Wolf on lower State Street in the 70′s. there was a guy who ran the place named Rod McDougal., Wonder what happened to him. Also worked at the H&R Land and Cattle Company on Santa Claus Land in Carpenteria for awhile. That place was the getaway if you needed privacy. What a time that was.

  75. Erika says:

    Here’s a few more I haven’t thought of in awhile. Going way back in time, anyone besides me remember the original Sizzler restaurant in Magnolia Center where Woody’s is now? For me, the most original German food could be found at the Hofbrau Restaurant and German deli on the corner of Alamar and De la Vina. The best fish and chips I ever had came from H. Salt. And although it wasn’t around too long, Little Alex’s Mexican in Goleta had some great salsa, food and entertainment.

    • Charlotte says:

      I thought Flapper Alley preceded Woody’s. Don’t remember Sizzler ever being in that location. I was one of the original staff members when Sizzler opened in 1987 in the Blue Ox location on Hollister. I believe there was a Happy Steak where Cody’s is now and The Bonanza in Goleta where Spikes Place was ( great location for a restaurant ). All places had the Sizzler business model.

  76. John Dickson says:

    The Restaurant Guy used to work in the local Hobson’s factory, at what is now Calle Cesar Chavez, making ice cream as a summer job. I then delivered ice cream to my sister who worked at Hobson’s on Stearns Wharf. My favorite part was bringing home tons of extra ice cream. If the last of a batch couldn’t fill a tub, we got to take it home. I remember working on the deep freezer until my limbs were numb then laying out in the sun until I could move again. Everyone who worked nearby was given free ice cream.

  77. Jim says:

    Lived in Santa Barbara 1955-1976.
    how about Ken’s Drive In We would ride our bikes there from Peabody school

  78. Joe Hayes says:

    I miss Bobby Levi’s and the original Ye Olde Butcher shop (before the fire)

  79. valdo herby says:

    I was in SB to cover the floods of about 1995 (that washed a poor retired judge down a canyon), and after a hard day’s work we would repair to a unique bar and restaurant somewhere off Hollister, maybe off Patterson, going West toward the water. Great couple ran it, wife’s name was “Marty” and I’m forgetting the husband’s for the moment. Absolutely the best bartender in town in a fellow named Kevin. We labeled his strong drinks “Kevinators.” Anyone know the name or whereabouts, exactly. Great sophisticated sort of menu toward continental side. nice guitarist-singer there, did “Hello Girl It’s Been a While…” loved it. Like to recall it better. Nothing else there, just empty lots. Hard to find. thanks!

  80. Michele says:

    What a great thread. I came here looking for the name of the Scandi Buffet. Couldn’t remember it to save my life. But I was thinking of it yesterday and those big tapestries on the dining room wall.

    Also, I’ll add Koelsch’s bakery in Five Points to the list of gone but not forgotten. I STILL walk past and wonder why there’s a wall where the bakery door should be!

  81. Gerald Bostock says:

    Paula’s Place at Alamar & De la Vina, before Mimosa was there. Had a birthday dinner there decades ago. Too bad I can’t remember what I ate.

    Also can’t remember the places that were at the location Madame Lu’s is now at, but being blocks from where I grew up, the family ate at all of them. Wish I could remember what it was in 1978 — Wonderful couple owned it and always served home-made yellow split pea soup.

    And Carl’s Steakhouse (I think it was), where Your Choice Thai is now?

    • Jim says:

      I remember Carl’s was one of my parents favorite in the late 50s.. Would get burgers to go when I worked at Mac’s Bicycle Shop in the late60s

      • Gerald Bostock says:

        Was Mac’s Bicycle in Loreto Plaza then? Or closer to Hope Ave? I know I went there, but I can no longer place it.

        I too miss Koelsch’s bakery and have very fond memories. My mom baked awesome chocolate-sour cream-choc. chip bundt cake, home-made sourdough, buckwheat pancakes and more, but when it came to little kids’ decorated birthday cakes, we bought them there, along with the occasional eclair treat. I still remember my Halloween themed birthday cake when I was 10 or so, it was gorgeous. Hard sugar witch, black cat, pumpkin, beautifully done.
        I love this thread.

  82. Patti says:

    Would have the best time at Club Zelo’s from 1985ish -1987. Great owner Bob Stout and the restaurant food was great too! Such fun times!

    • Gerald Bostock says:

      Great memory. I know I ate there a few times, but my memory is my first company holiday party, held there. Great food and atmosphere. Boss gifted us with bottles of White Swan from Moet & Chandon, that was good too. I think that was the name, it was tasty amber champagne.

  83. Skip Willis says:

    Angels on Horseback at BB OBrians.
    What a meal!

  84. Willard O. Allen says:

    When are they going to determine what they are going to do with the former Elephant Bar in Santa Barbara. It has been quite sometime since it closed……

    All for now,

    /. Bill ……………aka………………..WB

  85. LuAnn says:

    There was a wonderful restaurant on Upper State St. on the north (or is it east) side of the street that we went to for our anniversary years ago. It was intimate and quaint, not stuffy and had excellent food. I think the name was one word. Does anyone know what it may have been?

  86. Charlotte says:

    I’m quite certain that all the wonderful restaurants that I remember, if I would eat the same food today ( older, wiser more refined palate ) maybe just meh… It’s the nostalgia. Eating those meals with people who are no longer in my life. A time in my life that I miss very much.. “The good old days”.

  87. Bill Allen says:

    Please let me know the latest about the closing of ‘The Elephant Bar’. I am hoping that another restaurant will takes its place.

    All for now,

    /. Bill …………aka………….WB

  88. Nat Wheelwright says:

    Hobey Bakers
    The Snack Shack (on Coast Village)

  89. Al P says:

    How about Serranito’s in IV? They were the only folks who made “flautas” the way they did. (basically, a wet, green burrito, but with lettuce inside and then placed under the broiler – and peppery! What a great find for a kid from Boston!)

    I worked at the Isla Vista Habit, in 1980-81. Yikes, that’s a long time ago.

    • Wendy says:

      I remember those flautas! I worked at the Habit beginning Fall of 1981, after losing my job at the bookstore because I needed a water pump for my 1970 AMC Ambassador ( and missed a training session on the new cash registers ). You worked for Joe (Hussein) and his wife Pari?

  90. Sally says:

    Fabulous food, nice atmosphere. many a lunch there…good burgers (blue burger was my favorite). i miss it and the steaks too. :(

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