Following up on a story I wrote on November 5, 2017, The Project has opened at 214 State Street in the former home of Union Ale. The Project is an equal partnership between Corazon Cocina, which has a location in the Santa Barbara Public Market at 38 West Victoria Street, and Captain Fatty’s brewery whose flagship outlet is at 6489 Calle Real #D in Goleta.
Corazon Cocina General Manager Kassia Walker tells me that the menu at The Project has some classic items from the one at the Public Market, but the majority is a new, fresh take by Chef Ramon Velazquez. Unlike a nearby pavilion, which does not allow you to bring your alcoholic beverage to other businesses under the same roof, The Project’s liquor license covers the whole building.
Chef Ramon Velazquez’s cooking is best described by those who know it best as highly innovative yet intimately and deliciously familiar. Growing up in Guadalajara, Mexico, his love of food was nurtured by his mother and grandmother, who taught him how to make traditional Mexican dishes and create meals inspired by the local markets. Velazquez immigrated to the United States in 1990 and began working in restaurants in Santa Barbara, most notably as a sushi chef for the beloved restaurant Arigato for almost nine years and then moving on to the role of executive chef for Cielito.
I am told that the new Santa Barbara Captain Fatty’s is a little different than the Goleta location in that The Project home is not just beer but also offers cider, wine, and guest taps. Current guest taps are provided by The Apiary and SB Cider. Captain Fatty’s Craft Brewery began its voyage into the the beer scene when friends Jon “Captain” Wadell and Bryan “Fatty” Anderson began home-brewing beer a decade ago. Friend Preston Angell soon joined the team and they set sail to The Goodland in October 2014. They have since remodeled and expanded to a 15-barrel system with 120 barrels of fermentation capacity. Captain Fatty’s at The Project is their second location.
Hours at The project are Sunday-Thursday 11 a.m.-10:30 p.m. (kitchen closes at 10 p.m.), Friday-Saturday 11 a.m.-11:30 p.m. (drink last call is 11 p.m., kitchen closes at 10 p.m.). Walker says The Project will be open until 1 a.m. in the coming months, and that a late night menu is coming. The Project also plans to open at 7:30 a.m. in the near future and I am told that breakfast offerings are in the works, with coffee provided by Dune.