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Union Ale Brewing Co.
214 State St, Santa Barbara
Phone: (805) 845-8243


Reviews by the General Public

First visit will be my last, 2/18/2014
Reviewer: Christine from Santa Barbara, CA
Came here for the first time yesterday around 2 pm, 3 other tables occupied. There isn't really "service" so I didn't rate it. You order food and drinks at the bar and then the food is dumped on your table. Looked like a few interesting beers on tap so that's a plus, and my Firestone 805 tasted as expected. Ordered chicken nachos: chips seemed fresh, were thick and good. But I have no idea what cheese they used, it was warm but runny. And stayed runny. Good amount of fresh tomatoes, jalapeno, onion, cilantro was nice but chicken was cool and slightly smoky tasting and diced? If it's fresh smoked meat that should be advertised, it's a plus! But the diced meat seemed cafeteria style. As we were leaving two things happened which added to the "meh" nachos will keep me away. 1) family with small children changed a baby's diaper on the bench at the table, dad walked the dirty one to the back restroom but was back quickly enough to know he didn't wash his hands. 2) women's restroom at the front (near the register where you order) had both toilets not flushing and full of material. If your benches are baby toilets and you can't keep your actual toilets working - what's going into the food you serve me? I'm not a germaphobe but it's got me thinking the establishment is nasty - and that's not a good thing.


TERRIBLE, 2/15/2014
Reviewer: Hans from Santa Barbara, CA
One word describes it all...TERRIBLE! I have never been to a place with worse service. After being billed for the wrong prices, did not even receive an apology or explanation. Had to ask for them to look at the bill. I will NEVER be coming back here again. This is a mark against Santa Barbara and the nice shoppes along state street. Shame on the owner and "register girl" at this establishment. Simply atrocious!


Loving it!
Reviewer: Rian I. from Santa Barbara, CA
Found a new home for me to watch hockey at!!! They have a great menu, the chicken strips and fries is amazing!! Great appetizers and great liquor on hand. Multiple TV on various channels! I enjoy visiting Union Ale, great atmosphere & staff, Im glad they opened up!


So close!
Reviewer: Spencer from Santa Barbara, CA
I work near Union Ale and was looking for a new place to grab lunch to take to go to eat at my job. I walked into Union Ale pretty early today (maybe 11:15) and since it was a bar and a Sunday, it was dead. The service was quick and food looked so good but they made the fatal "food-to-go flaw". They put a ton of ketchup on the bun of my burger. By the time I got to sit down with it 10 minutes later, it was totally soggy. A pretty rookie mistake but I want to try them again soon and hope it was just a one-time thing. Also a weird service mistake but I got a different kind of fries than I asked for, but not a big deal since they were good.


The worst service I've EVER received
Reviewer: Melina from Santa Barbara, CA
A group of six of us headed to Union Ale last week for the first time. Our group probably comprised 50% of the total number of guests in the entire place; in other words, we came in at a point when business was slow. We stood at the bar for a good five minutes and contemplated walking out as the bartender schmoozed with some customers. She finally decided to grace us with her attention when she told us we had to order at the register. Okay, we thought, and walked the four extra feet to order a few beers. No big deal. However, things went from a slow descent to a downward spiral shortly thereafter. The woman was TOTALLY rude to us the entire time we were there: lots of attitude and very condescending. Everyone in my group picked up on it: no matter what we said to her, no matter how polite we were, this woman would find a way to respond as rudely as she could. As a result of our experience, all of us have decided to never set foot in that place again (though we may overturn that decision if that bartender ever gets fired). It's a shame, too, because the one beer I had while I was there was pretty good.


"Sombrero Girl" rewrites the charts for high quality service
Reviewer: Joshua B from Santa Barbara, CA
I never write reviews, but I owe it to "Sombrero Girl" to give her credit for the most amazing service I've ever received. Several hours into a bachelor/ette party I was starving and moderately intoxicated. While waiting in line for food a female employee in a sombrero directed me to a different line, but when I got to the front they said that line was for drinks only. She meant to help, just didn't realize I was ordering food. I completely overreacted and went to collect my friends to leave and loudly complained to them about what she had done. When she overheard, rather than slapping me, she offered a deeply sincere apology and begged to comp me some food. I realized what a jerk I'd been and told her we were square. I stayed there and ordered my (very good) hamburger, when suddenly she shows up with a platter of (also very good) fries and dipping sauces. To the owners of Union Ale: You need to make Sombrero Girl your customer service trainer and give her a raise. I was being a waitperson's nightmare and, in spite of that, she was able to keep me from leaving your restaurant, exceed my expectations, and now I've told at least a dozen people what a great experience I had. Way to go Sombrero Girl. You are impressive, indeed.


Never again!
Reviewer: Melissa from Santa Barbara, CA
I've been here 3 times. The first time was great it was during fiestas.Good food and beers, nothing brewed in-house though. We tried it again for my boyfriends birthday and I called ahead of time that day to make sure they were open and served food late (on a Friday) the girl on the phone gave me an "i dont know" answer and said it depended on when the kitchen wanted to close varying from 9-1am! She didnt seem to know anything. We got there early because we wanted to get a boot. The same girl (i recognized her voice and sense of confusion) told me there were no boots left and when I went to the front bar the man, who I assume was the owner because he told me to tell her to he said to pour me a boot. I later found that she was a supervisor..Even worse! It's mind boggling how their manangement is even a disaster! I can go to any of the other bars dt for the same food and beer but receive much better and friendlier service..


What happened?
Reviewer: Christina from Santa Barbara, CA
We used to go to Union Ale all the time when it first opened - at least once a week. Food was excellent and the prices reasonable. We started to notice that their menu started changing and thought, well, it is a new place, they are trying to figure out what works. Unfortunately, the past 3 times we've been there, their menu is just missing too many things we used to enjoy and the prices have raised significantly. What happened to their sliders? Their pizzas are $18! They are all one size now too. Tonight, we went there for a late dinner at 10 and all they said they had was pizzas or salad. Really? After this experience, we will not be back.


And we Sat at the BAR!!
Reviewer: Shawn Sullivan from Santa Barbara, CA
After being in a rut for 6 months we decided to get out of Noleta and go Downtown. We drove down State Street and saw Union Ale Brew Co and decided why not we are here? Bad Mistake! Walked into 3 different section of restaurant before deciding on the back bar. Sat there for 10 minutes before even get acknowledge. I agree with previous post about being a certain age. Sat another 5 minutes before walking out. 4 people (including ourselves) and 2 bartenders.


Why have happy hour then?
Reviewer: Mike Smith from Santa Barbara, CA
I was there for happy hr, I asked the guy at the register if it was still happy hr, he said yes, I ordered a happy hr pizza and he charged me the regular price. I asked him why he tried to charge me regular price and he said "We don't push happy hr" even though I JUST asked him about it. I like the food but the line situation in the main bar could be a lot better and I would go there more for sports if they had any of the packages.


What happened to Happy Hour?
Reviewer: Cassie from Santa Barbara, CA
I used to love coming here for the happy hour pizzas for $7. The normal price was $14, which wasn't too bad. Now they've changed the sizes. A small pizza (personal sized) is $14 (ridiculous), and it's what you get for $7 for happy hr. The new medium pizza, which is what used to be the happy hr pizza is now $18. Are you serious? They've lost my business.


writing as i wait...
Reviewer: zana from Santa Barbara, CA
It has taken so long to order that its been long enough that it could make me mad AND to write a review on here. There were only three people in line! I don't get why they have one person taking the orders and pouring beer. It takes forever.


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