Centennial Beer Hall coming to Goleta

Centennial Beer Hall is coming to 5871 Hollister Avenue in Goleta, the former home of Mercury Lounge and Gus’ Cocktails. “This spot has been a staple of Old Town Goleta for over 60 years and we are stoked to carry that torch and continue to serve the community with an extensive selection of craft beer, local wines and much more,” says the venue on Instagram. “We will be opening in a couple short weeks and are in search of a few amazing individuals to round out our bar staff. If developing your knowledge of and appreciation for craft beer and other great beverages while creating a fun and memorable experience for your guests sounds like your idea of a good time, please reach out and apply @centennialbeerhall”

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In-N-Out Burger coming to Buellton?

The Buellton Planning Commission is studying a proposal for the development of a In-N-Out Burger at 515 McMurray Road, the home of the closed Parks Plaza Theatre. The five-screen theater was built in the early 1990s near the Santa Ynez Valley Marriott and McDonald’s. The eatery would have 36 patio dining seats and 74 indoor seats. A Buellton In-N-Out Burger location would be the third in Santa Barbara County joining those in Goleta and Santa Maria. It would be the first new In-N-Out Burger in either Santa Barbara or San Luis Obispo counties in more than a decade. In-N-Out Burger opened in 1948 and has more than 330 restaurants in seven states: California, Colorado, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, Texas, and Oregon.

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Celebrity chef dinners at Alisal

The Alisal Guest Ranch & Resort at 1054 Alisal Road in Solvang has announced a guest chef lineup during August, September, October, and November for their “California Ranch Cookout” series. The resort confirmed several upcoming 2021 dates: Ray Garcia on August 24, Iron Chef Cat Cora on September 26, Sam Jones on October 7, and concluding the year with Tiffani Thiessen on November 13. Exclusively available to hotel guests and members of the ranch, these California Ranch Cookouts are a one-night-only dinner prepared by the guest chef alongside Director of Culinary Operations Chef Anthony Endy. The Cookouts feature curated menus to highlight the unique talent of each visiting chef. Recent menus have featured everything from fresh California fare to unique vegetarian cuisine, as well as The Alisal’s signature BBQ cooking, to create a memorable outdoor dining experience.

L to R: Ray Garcia, Sam Jones, Tiffani Thiessen, Cat Cora. Courtesy photos.

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Mr B Restaurant & Cafe coming to La Cumbre Plaza

Reader Eric let me know that Mr B Restaurant & Cafe is coming to La Cumbre Plaza at 140 South Hope Avenue in the former home of Pizza Mizza which closed in October 2018. I have confirmed that the business is on the way and will provide details as they become available. A peek inside reveals that it is a virtual time capsule of how Pizza Mizza looked on closing day minus the seats and artwork, suggesting that opening day for Mr B is a long way off unless they intend to reuse the furnishings which still look terrific.

Photos by The Restaurant Guy

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Golden Line Coffee Bar is now open Fridays

Golden Line Coffee Bar at 618 Anacapa Street has expanded hours and is now be open on Fridays. Their new operating hours are Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Golden Line Coffee Bar  is a pop-up Coffee and Tea Bar located inside Villa Wine Bar in downtown Santa Barbara whose goal is “to provide modern, quality coffees, teas, and pastries; work toward supply chain equity and environmental sustainability; and provide a unique & inspiring place for our community.”

Featured drinks for the summer are: Iced Strawberry Matcha, with house-made organic strawberry syrup and matcha by kettl;  Cocoa-Infused Cold Brew Coffee, made with sustainably sourced Guittard Cocoa; and Iced Vanilla Latte, with house-made syrup made with sustainably sourced vanilla beans from Madagascar and Papua New Guinea.

Golden Line Coffee Bar has also been building out their tea selections and have added some teas from local importer Far West Tea Traders to complement offerings from kettl. I am told that the most popular so far are the Meishan Jin Xuan, aka “Milk Oolong”, and the Brandy Oolong, aka “Plum Honey.” Both of these can be hot or iced.

Courtesy photo

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Riviera Bar opens downtown

In March 2020 we broke the news that the Riviera Bar is coming to 20 West Figueroa Street, the former home of the iconic dive bar, The Sportsman. The wait is now over and Riviera Bar is open daily from 4:30 p.m. to close. The new local watering hole offers cocktails, wine, California beers, snacks, salads and plates. Riviera Bar is run by veterans from the iconic (and departed) Paradise Cafe including Kevin Boss, Karen Collyer, Jim Mishler, and Oliver Davis.

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Goodland Dining opens in Goleta

After an eight year run Goodland Market and Kitchen at 231 South Magnolia Avenue in Goleta closed in November 2019. Reader Annie tells me that Goodland Dining has opened its doors at that address under new management, offering breakfast, lunch and dinner. The menu is 100% Mexican Food creating by Chef Luis Sánchez who has for more than 20 years of experience in the food industry. “In our menu you can find delicious diners and pastries and for breakfast our delicious and incomparable Chilaquiles and Chile Verde plates,” says Sánchez. “We also offer commercial Kitchen space for those who want to start theirs own food business. Goodland Dining offers inside & outside sitting with a beautiful mountain view and yes, you can bring your pet! We are a dog friendly restaurant.” Goodland Dining also offers catering services for special events or business meetings. The menu is available online at goodlanddining.com or call (805) 845-4300 to place your order.

Courtesy photos

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Courthouse Tavern to open during Fiesta

The Courthouse Tavern, coming to 129 East Anapamu Street (formerly The Little Door, Piano Riviera Lounge, The French Table, and Elements Restaurant & Bar), was originally scheduled to open June 15th and it now appears that the business will launch on August 4th. “We will be opening for Fiesta next week and then opening gradually the following week for lunch then breakfast then dinner,” says owner Warren Butler. “Looking forward to hosting friends and visitors in a friendly neighborhood restaurant and bar atmosphere.” Courthouse Tavern will be serving American cuisine and will have Happy Hour all day with drink specials and small plates. The eatery will also be available for private parties and catering.

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Fatte’s Pizza opens on De la Vina

Readers Steve H. and Brendan let me know that Fatte’s Pizza has opened at 2840 De la Vina Street in the former home of Lilsey’s Wood-Fired Pizza, Nicky D’s Wood-fired Pizza, and Pizza Hut. The sign is not yet up on the building and employees have not yet been hired so owner Obniel Ariza is running the operation solo. Ariza also operates a Fatte’s Pizza in Santa Maria. “Purchase any size pizza and get a second one of equal value free,” says Ariza about his favorite aspect of the business. He tells me that there are 21 different ingredients that you can choose to add to a build-your-own pizza.

The combo menu, also known as “Fatte’s Favorites,” includes Sticky Fingers (pepperoni, ham, bacon, onions, Italian sausage, mushrooms, black olives, and green peppers), Deluxe Hawaiian (ham, pineapple, bacon, onions, and extra cheese), Veggie (mushrooms, green peppers, olives, onions, tomatoes, and artichoke hearts), Chicken Combo (chicken, garlic, olive, onions, tomatoes, available with garlic sauce or red sauce), Chorizo Combo (chorizo, jalapeños, onions, tomatoes, and bacon), Meat Medley (pepperoni, Italian sausage, ham, linguica, ground beef, and bacon), and Fatte’s Special (pepperoni, Italian sausage, ham, linguica, onions, mushrooms, garlic, pineapple, olives, and green peppers). Prices for the combo pizzas range from $22.99 to $41.99.

The Family Deal includes two large 2-topping pizzas, one 2-liter soda, garlic bread, and one order of buffalo wings, or medium antipasto salad for $40.47 while the Party Pack includes four large pizzas with two toppings and two 2-liter sodas for $55.98.

Currently hours are noon-10 p.m. and starting August 1st they will expand to 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Call (805) 563-0082 or visit fattessantabarbara.com.

Photo of Fatte’s Pizza owner Obniel Ariza by reader Steve H.

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Mimosas at D’Angelo?

Reader Annie noticed an ABC posting in the window at D’Angelo Bakery 25 West Gutierrez Street. I am told that years ago an application for alcoholic beverages was in the works but didn’t make it to fruition. Hopefully the second time is the charm.

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Calle Real Coffee

Construction has started at new coffee shop coming to 5915 Calle Real Ste. A in the former home of Pizza Hut. Last May numerous reader let me know that artwork had appeared on the window at the address, suggesting that the next tenant will be a coffee shop.

Photo by The Restaurant Guy

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China King now open daily

China King restaurant at 5915 Calle Real Ste. B in Goleta is now open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.. Historically the popular Goodland eatery was closed on Mondays.

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Cheese Shop Santa Barbara reopens Saturday

Cheese Shop Santa Barbara at 827 Santa Barbara Street reopens after being closed for remodeling. Throughout the refresh the Cheese Shop has continued to accept online orders at cheeseshopsb.com for local delivery only.

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Bowlero buys Zodo’s and Z’s Tap House

Bowlero Corp, a leader in bowling entertainment has announced its acquisition of Zodo’s and Z’s Tap House at 5925 Calle Real in Goleta, expanding the Bowlero presence to 41 locations in California. Bowlero Corp is a global media company and the largest owner and operator of bowling centers in the world with over 12,000 lanes.

Photos by The Restaurant Guy

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Drift hotel and restaurant opening spring 2022

San José del Cabo is a resort city on the southern tip of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula. It is here where the first Drift Boutique Hotel opened. It will soon be followed by a location in spring 2022 at 524 State Street in Santa Barbara, formerly known as the Scientology building which is being extensively remodeled. A third location will open in Nashville, Tennessee next summer. Drift Santa Barbara will offer a limited food menu alongside locally-inspired drinks and baristas will be on-hand every day to make coffee.

Photos by The Restaurant Guy

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Four Restaurant Burglaries

Sheriff’s detectives are investigating four recent burglaries at local businesses where the suspects forced entry overnight and stole items. The first incident was Friday, July 23, 2021 in the 5800-block of Hollister Avenue at Old Town Coffee. A suspect smashed a window to gain entry, stole various items from inside the business, and fled prior to deputies’ arrival.

Three additional businesses were burglarized in the early morning hours of Sunday, July 25, 2021. South Coast Deli and Choi’s Market, in the 100-block of S. Patterson Avenue were both victims of burglary where the front glass doors were smashed, items taken, and suspects fled prior to deputies’ arrival around 3:00 a.m. Less than an hour later, at around 3:45 a.m., Pierre Lafond in the 500-block of San Ysidro Road in Montecito was burglarized with very similar circumstances where suspects smashed the front glass doors, stole items, and fled the area prior to deputies’ arrival.

Sheriff’s deputies have taken reports for each of these cases and have forwarded them to detectives for follow-up. While detectives review surveillance video and other evidence, they are treating these investigations as separate incidents until they can be linked to the same suspects. While the investigations are ongoing, we will be refraining from outlining the exact items that were taken from each of the burglaries.

Detectives would like to encourage anyone with information about these burglaries to call the Criminal Investigations Bureau at (805) 681-4150. You can also call the anonymous tip line at (805) 681-4171, or submit information online at sbsheriff.org/home/anonymous-tip.

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Dutch Garden update

I stopped by the closed and soon to be reopened Dutch Garden restaurant at 4203 State Street and learned that remodeling and permitting are still underway. I am told that they plan to quietly start serving meals whenever they are ready without any formal announcements. Thanks to social media this means that they will be swamped within hours of reopening 🙂

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The Riviera Bar ready to go

Reader Steve H. tells me that The Riviera Bar (the former Sportsman dive bar on West Figueroa) will probably open next week.

Photo by reader Steve H.

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Island Brewing Company Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Island Brewing Company will celebrate its 20th Anniversary with a week of scheduled frivolity and a two new Anniversary Beer releases starting Monday July 19th and running through the weekend to Sunday, July 25th. “We are full of gratitude for the friends we’ve made along the way, our place in the community in Carpinteria and Santa Barbara, and for the talented people here that make the magic happen,” says General Manager Laurie Matthews. For more information and the full schedule of events visit islandbrewingcompany.com

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Santa Barbara Restaurant Collective adding 7 new restaurants

Reader Oxmyx spotted a Craigslist ad by Santa Barbara Restaurant Collective, the umbrella organization for Mesa Burger, Lighthouse Coffee, Corner Tap, and M Kitchen. They are hiring for all locations and all positions, front and back of house. The listing also that says that the Santa Barbara Restaurant Collective has seven more projects slated to open over the next two years. Some of the seven may include The Kitchen commercial space (formerly Samy’s Camera), Augie’s Tequila Bar (formerly Left at Albuquerque), a restaurant coming to the Turnpike Center, and a rumored ice cream shop at 1826A Cliff Drive (formerly Santa Barbara Shabbos Services), next to The Cliff Room.

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Six new restaurants coming to the Turnpike Center

Hardly a day goes by when I don’t receive an inquiry about all the construction at the Turnpike Center in Noleta, home to Vons, Rusty’s Pizza, Dave’s Dogs, and other businesses. Though the entire center is receiving a refresh, with wood exterior walls and bronze colored roofs, particular attention has been paid to the southeast corner which will be the future home of six new restaurants. One business will be a Dave’s Drip House ice cream shop (run by the founder of Dave’s Dogs) while another is a yet to be announced restaurant by Chris Chiarappa, the visionary and inspiration for Mesa Burger, and other local eateries. Play It Again Sports is moving across the parking lot to make room for one of the incoming dining establishments. Play It Again Sports will take over the space currently occupied by Hair Studio, Barbershop, and Laundromat which are next to Dave’s Dogs. The southeast corner of the Turnpike Center has been fully remodeled and now includes plantings, walkways, fountains, statues, and more. Electric vehicle chargers are planned.

Photos by The Restaurant Guy

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New Jeannine’s Bakery on the waterfront opens Friday

The new Jeannine’s Bakery across from Stearns Wharf had a soft opening last Saturday, serving a limited menu of coffee and pastries. Full service with a full menu begins this Friday July 16th. Known as one of the best breakfast and lunch spots in town, the eatery is located at 1 State Street, the former home of State Street Coffee, Due Lune Ristorante and Bar, Eladio’s, A & W Root Beer, and Sunny’s Hamburger Stand. Accompanying the building that wraps around the corner of State Street and Cabrillo Boulevard is a large outdoor patio overlooking Stearns Wharf and West Beach, and a full bar.

The new waterfront restaurant is locally owned and operated by the Hardey family which has run Jeannine’s Bakery since 1985. The iconic building is owned and managed by the Romasanta family, which has owned the Harbor View Inn and adjoining restaurant property since 1982.

As difficult as it may be to find parking, it’s worth it for the view alone. “This is why we live here,” says co-owner Alison Hardey. “And in this space, in this spot, you really get to enjoy it because you’re not in the elements. You’re not in the wind, you’re not in the sand, yet you get the beauty of it.”

The walls of the restaurant are adorned with numerous photos of the Hardey family. I asked about one photo of Alison’s parents Eleanor and Gordon Hardey, who happened to be visiting the bakery while I was there, and was told that it was taken at a fraternity/sorority event at the Coral Casino in Montecito around 1950.

All four Jeannine’s Bakeries are now open though the upper State Street and Goleta locations are closed Mondays and Tuesdays until more staff is brought onboard. Their outlet at 15 East Figueroa Street closed last December and will soon be the home of Hook & Press donuts. Visit jeannines.com.

SEASIDE SENSATION: Above: manager Lalo Mendoza and co-owner Alison Hardey show some fresh-baked pastries. Below: Photos of Matriarch and Patriarch Eleanor and Gordon Hardey adorn a wall. Top photo by reader Steve H. Lower photos by The Restaurant Guy

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Palace rolls out favorites

Last August The Palace Grill 8 East Cota Street reopened from the pandemic shutdown with a streamlined menu. General Manager Armondo Salazar tells me that the restaurant has recently started bringing back a variety of guest favorites including Caribbean Coconut Shrimp appetizer with horseradish marmalade, Soft Shelled Crab, the Seafood Platter, and more.

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Holdren’s turns 18

In 2003 proprietor Clay Holdren opened Holdren’s Steaks & Seafood at 512 State Street, the former home of the original Joe’s Cafe. He tells me he is planning to have an 18 dollar menu with discounts on popular items. Previous anniversary offerings (15, 16, and 17 dollar menus) were a big success.

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The Crystal Ball Knows All

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:

  • Augie’s Tequila Bar, 700 State St. (formerly Left At Albuquerque)
  • Backstage Kitchen & Bar, 409 State St. (formerly Q’s Billiards)
  • Carp Kitchen and Grocery, 4945 Carpinteria Ave. Ste. A, Carpinteria
  • Corazón Guisados, 214 State St. (formerly Ca’Dario Pizzeria)
  • Courthouse Tavern, 129 E. Anapamu St. (formerly Elements Restaurant & Lounge)
  • Dutch Garden, 4203 State St. (reopening)
  • Everytable, 1001 State St. (formerly Saks 5th Avenue)
  • Fatte’s Pizza, 2840 De la Vina St. (formerly Santa Barbara Wood-Fired Pizza)
  • The Good Plow, 5205 Carpinteria Ave, Carpinteria (formerly Fosters Freeze)
  • Hibachi Steak House (reopening), 500 State St.
  • Hook & Press Donuts, 15 East Figueroa St. (formerly Jeannine’s Bakery)
  • IHOP, University Plaza, Goleta
  • Jeannine’s Bakery, 1 State St. (formerly State Street Coffee)
  • Juice N Things, 4991 Carpinteria Ave., Carpinteria (formerly Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf)
  • The Kitchen, 530 State St. (formerly Samy’s Camera)
  • Mangione’s Italian Ice, 1222 State St. (formerly Spoon)
  • Old Town Coffee, 1131 State St. (inside Mosaic Locale)
  • Pepe’s Mexican Restaurant (reopening), 254 Orange Ave., Goleta
  • Red Pepper, 2840 De la Vina St. (formerly New Si Chuan Garden)
  • Reunion Kitchen, 1118 E. Cabrillo Blvd. (formerly East Beach Grill)
  • Starbucks, 3052 De la Vina St. (formerly Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf)
  • Tap Thai, 7060 Hollister Ave. Ste. D-6, Goleta (formerly Sharky’s Woodfired Mexican Grill)
  • Timbers Roadhouse, 10 Winchester Canyon Rd., Goleta (formerly Timbers)
  • Unnamed, 524 State St. (formerly Church of Scientology)
  • Unnamed, 1187 Coast Village Rd. (formerly Khao Kaeng by Empty Bowl Gourmet Noodle Bar)
  • Unnamed Coffee Shop, 5915 Calle Real Ste. A, Goleta (formerly Pizza Hut)
  • Wingstop, 888 Embarcadero Del Norte, Isla Vista (formerly Subway)
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Alessia Patisserie & Cafe opens in former Sojourner spot

European-inspired Alessia Patisserie & Cafe opened July 1st at 134 East Canon Perdido Street, the former home of Miso Hungry and Sojourner Cafe. Owner Alessia Guehr is the daughter of Brigitte Guehr and Norbert Schulz who introduced several area restaurants including Mirabelle, The Nook, Norbert’s, and Brigitte’s. The eatery offers breakfast, lunch, croissants, pastries, muffins, and more. Patisserie Hours: Tuesday-Friday 7am-3pm Saturday-Sunday 8am-3pm. Cafe Hours: Tuesday-Sunday 8am-2pm, Breakfast 8am-11am, Lunch 8am-2pm. Closed on Mondays.

Photo by Steve H.

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Rascal’s opens downtown

Barb’s Pies, which opened at 18 East Cota Street last January, closed on June 13th and has been replaced by Rascal’s, a 100% vegan restaurant curated by proprietor Dalan Moreno. The eatery shares space with the Venus in Furs wine bar and is open 4-10pm Wednesday- Sunday.

Courtesy photo

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Oakberry Acai Bowls celebrates one year in business

Oakberry Acai Bowls is a survivor. The Brazilian business opened one year ago at 819 State Street Ste. B.  during the middle of the pandemic, and amidst construction at Paseo Nuevo mall, and have thrived. The business offers smoothies and bowls, the latter being the most popular.

“When the pandemic arrived we were working to open the store,” says owner Ana Luisa Amaral. “Then I wondered: should we open or wait? But I didn’t know how long the pandemic would last so we worked to open as soon as we could and decided to believe it will work. We kept working during April and May then in June 2020 we opened.  I think locals really want to help small businesses and we had a lot of people who came every week, asked how business is going, and brought someone new with them. We have a lot of customers from Santa Barbara who are great and I think we survived because of them. Santa Barbara is a very special place.”

Starting in May 2021, as it got warmer, business really began to pickup and now sales are the best they have ever been. Oakberry was fortunate that their type of product was to-go and all seating was outdoors. When restaurants all around them had to close because of the pandemic, Oakberry did not.

Customers come from all over. I am told that 30% of customers are from Santa Barbara, and 70% are tourists from out of the area. “Oakberry even has fans of the brand that drive all the way to Santa Barbara for us,” said Ana Alice Amaral. “Even from as far away as San Diego. And people are also impressed that we are super fast. Sometimes while people are placing their order, someone is making it, and when we are done taking the order the bowl is ready.”

In addition to the popular smoothies and bowls Oakberry is adding a variety of coffees to their menu called “O-coffee” and a new breakfast option with oatmeal called “Oakmeal.” They hope to start the new services by August. Oakberry Acai Bowls is literally open daily 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., including Christmas and New Years Day.

A FAMILY AFFAIR: Top photo left to right: Ana Alice Amaral, JuJu Amaral, Ana Luisa Amaral, Beto Amaral. Photos by The Restaurant Guy

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Restaurant Openings

Here is a list of area eateries that have opened in the last 12 months:

  • July 2021: Alessia Patisserie & Café, 134 East Canon Perdido St.
  • June 2021: Caje, 811 State St. Ste. A
  • May 2021:  Cali-Forno Pizzeria, 905 State St. (rebranded from Persona Pizzeria); Costa Kitchen & Bar at Hotel Mar Monte, 1111 E. Cabrillo Blvd.; Crush Bar & Tap, 1129 State St. Ste A; The Daisy (reopened), 1221 State St.; NoTown Tavern, 5114 Hollister Ave.; Wingman Rodeo, 5892 Hollister Ave., Goleta
  • April 2021: Le Cafe Stella (reopened), 3302 McCaw Ave.; The Point Coffee, 370 Storke Rd., Goleta (now closed); The Revere Room at Miramar, 1759 S. Jameson Ln., Montecito; South Coast Deli, 3534 State St.
  • March 2021: 4 Eggs & Pizza,1221 State St. Ste. 10; Palihouse Cafe and Bar, 915 Garden St.; Sear Steakhouse, 478 4th Place, Solvang; Secret Bao, 1201 Anacapa St.; Tondi Gelato, 723 State St.
  • February 2021: Wingstop, 3849 State St.
  • January 2021: Barb’s Pies, 18 E. Cota St. (closed, changing to Rascal’s)
  • November 2020: Cafe Lido at Mar Monte Hotel, 1111 E. Cabrillo Blvd.; Caje Coffee Roasters, 1316 State St.; Hustle & Grind Coffee Company, 11 W. De la Guerra St.; La Paloma Café, 702 Anacapa St.; Yona Redz Queso Tacos, 532 State St.
  • October 2020: Cheese Shop Santa Barbara, 827 Santa Barbara St.; Chomp on the Rocks, 113 Harbor Wy., Ste. 180; Kyle’s Kitchen, 900 Embarcadero del Mar, Isla Vista; Olio Bottega, 11 W. Victoria St.
  • September 2020: Salty at the Beach, 113 Harbor Wy., Ste. 180; Sprouts Farmers Market, 29 S. Milpas St.
  • August 2020: Aperitivo, 7 W. Haley St.; Bristol Farms, 3855 State St.; Crazy Jim’s Tacos y Mas, 505 State St.;  Dean Coffee Shop, 6100-1 Hollister Ave., Goleta; Insomnia Cookies, 430 State St.; Revolver Pizza, 1429 San Andres; Thai Kitchen, 4317 State St., Ste. D
  • July 2020: Mercado El Rey, 305 W. Montecito St.; Little Dom’s Seafood, 686 Linden Ave., Carpinteria; Lost & Found, 905 Linden Ave., Carpinteria; Mesa Burger, 1209 Coast Village Rd., Montecito; Red Pepper, 282 Orange Ave., Goleta; Rincon Beach Bar, 3805 Santa Claus Ln., Carpinteria (now closed)
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Restaurant Closings

Here is a list of area eateries that have closed in the last year:

  • June 2021: Barb’s Pies, 18 E. Cota St. (changing to Rascal’s); The Point Coffee, 370 Storke Rd., Goleta
  • May 2021: Alphie’s, 5725 Hollister Ave., Goleta; New Si Chuan Garden, 2840 De la Vina St. (changing to Red Pepper); Starbucks, 800 State St.; Subway, 888 Embarcadero Del Norte, Isla Vista (changing to Wingstop); Taqueria El Pastorcito, 4427 Hollister Ave., Goleta
  • February 2021: Hibachi Steak House & Sushi Bar, 500 State St. (reopening); Malibu Farm at Miramar, 1759 S. Jameson Ln., Montecito (now The Revere Room); South Coast Deli, 6521 Pardall Rd., Isla Vista
  • January 2021: Beachside Bar Café, 5905 Sandspit Rd., Goleta; Noemi Pizza Romana, 3534 State St. (now South Coast Deli); Panera Bread, 3851 State St.; Yanni’s at Mackenzie Market, 3102 State St.
  • December 2020: Chocolats du CaliBressan, 1114 State St.; Dunkin Donuts, 3771 State St.; Jeannine’s Bakery, 15 E. Figueroa St. (changing to Hook & Press Donuts)
  • November 2020: Neighbor Tim’s BBQ, Food Truck;
  • October 2020: Olio Crudo Bar, 11 W. Victoria St. (now Olio Bottega)
  • September 2020: Lucky Dragon, 6831 Hollister Ave., Goleta; Paradise Café, 702 Anacapa St. (now La Paloma Café); Silvergreens, 900 Embarcadero del Mar, Isla Vista (now Kyle’s Kitchen);
  • August 2020: Ana’s Taco Bar, 505 State St. (now Crazy Jim’s); Fosters Freeze, 5205 Carpinteria Ave., Carpinteria (changing to The Good Plow); The Middle Child, 18 E. Cota St. (now Venus in Furs); Onus Donuts, 413 State St. (now JJ’s Diner); PokeCeviche, 313 Paseo Nuevo; Wetzel’s Pretzels, 723 State St. (now  Tondi Gelato)
  • July 2020: C’est Cheese, 825 Santa Barbara St. (now Cheese Shop Santa Barbara); Coffee Bean, 3052 De la Vina St. (changing to Starbucks)
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Alessia Patisserie & Cafe opens July 1

European-inspired Alessia Patisserie & Cafe opens July 1st at 134 East Canon Perdido Street, the former home of Miso Hungry and Sojourner Cafe. Owner Alessia Guehr is the daughter of Brigitte Guehr and Norbert Schulz who introduced several area restaurants including Mirabelle, The Nook, Norbert’s, and Brigitte’s. Alessia has worked at the Biltmore, Bouchon, and The Nook, and other dining establishments. The eatery offers breakfast, lunch, croissants, pastries, muffins, and more.

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Fourth of July at the Miramar

The community is invited to a family-friendly Independence Day Brunch on the Great Lawn of the Rosewood Miramar Beach on Sunday, July 4, for two seatings from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m., or 1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. Enjoy festive cuisine stations and specialty drinks, a celebratory carnival, lawn games for children, and live music. The cost is $250 per adult, $125 per child (ages 4 to 12), and 3 and under is complimentary. Ticket price includes alcoholic beverages. To reserve tickets call 805-900-8388

Top photo courtesy, bottom photo by The Restaurant Guy (Jun 20)

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Timbers Roadhouse coming to Goleta

Last April I broke the news that Woody’s BBQ at 5112 Hollister Avenue in Goleta is planning to open a restaurant across town at 10 Winchester Canyon Road, the former home of Timbers restaurant. Now reader Paulette gives us the name of the eatery: Timbers Roadhouse. Remodeling is underway and there appears to be a few more months of work to do before we can celebrate the reopening of the historic building. The last incarnation of the Timbers restaurant closed in May 2011.

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 p.m., 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 constructing the Timbers restaurant that was built by Tex Blankenship in 1952. I am told that many of the timbers still contain pieces of shrapnel from the torpedo bombing.

Photos by The Restaurant Guy (June 21)

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Red Pepper coming to De la Vina

I received a message from reader Brendan that read “Today I was walking by New Si Chuan Garden on De La Vina and noticed the door was open. I peeked in. Didn’t see anyone (I guess they were in the back) but resting on a chair just inside the doorway was a sign that said ‘Red Pepper Chinese Restaurant’. What could it all mean?” I called the popular Red Pepper at 282 Orange Avenue Goleta and they confirmed that they are opening a second location at 2840 De la Vina Street, in the former home of New Si Chuan Garden (which closed last month after 3 years in business), Yen Ching Restaurant, and Andy’s Chuck Wagon. The new Red Pepper is scheduled to open in July.

Photo by The Restaurant Guy

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Fake restaurant website

Santa Barbara County District Attorney Joyce E. Dudley is warning the community about a consumer scam involving a fake restaurant webpage for “La Tapatia #3” in Goleta. The fake webpage is “latapatia3ca.club” and is affiliated with a website named OrderHero. Even though this webpage has no actual connection to the restaurant, Google provides this webpage in response to a search for “La Tapatia #3 Goleta.” The fake webpage appears to allow online ordering for pickup at the restaurant and actually takes customer payment and credit card information, but the orders are not forwarded to the restaurant.

The District Attorney cautions the community when ordering food and other products on-line and recommends verification of services through the business before placing an order, especially when using a new or unknown service provider. Anyone with information about on-line scams involving fake websites or OrderHero is encouraged to contact Investigator Greg Hons, District Attorney’s Office at (805) 568-2390. If you have been the victim of this or any other fraud, please contact the law-enforcement agency of jurisdiction where the crime occurred.

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National Food Truck Day

This month, for more than 30,000 food trucks across the country, National Food Truck Day will have a special significance as a symbolic day for the industry to celebrate its resiliency and to let the world know they are back. This National Food Truck Day, join the Roaming Hunger organization in saying ‘Thank you’ to this small army of entrepreneurs.

Roaming Hunger is inviting everyone to support and eat from their favorite food truck the week of June 20 through June 27, with a special emphasis on Friday, June 25th, which is National Food Truck Day. More than 30,000 food trucks across the country are participating by providing endless deals and discounts.

“This year is about celebrating the individual stories of the men and women that make up the mobile food industry,” says Ross Resnick, Founder and CEO of Roaming Hunger. “These entrepreneurs are local heroes in their communities, and many of their stories are heartwarming and inspiring. We’re inviting everyone to go out and make National Food Truck Day about supporting these amazing small businesses that make life delicious for us every single day.”

A list of food truck locations and deals for the Santa Barbara area is available online at  foodtruckday.org

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Courthouse Tavern update

The Courthouse Tavern, coming to 129 East Anapamu Street (formerly Elements Restaurant & Bar) was originally scheduled to open June 15th but is still waiting for the health department to give the new eatery a green light. The opening should be rolling out soon, starting with the bar, followed by a parklet, breakfast, lunch, and more.

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Cajé Coffee Roasters replaces Coffee Bean

In April I wrote that Cajé Coffee Roasters, already available locally at 416 East Haley Street, 1316 State Street, and 948 Embarcadero del Norte in Isla Vista, is coming to 811 State Street Ste. A, the former home of Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf which closed three area locations last year. Reader Ana tells me that Cajé opened earlier this month.

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Harbor Restaurant and Longboards Grill are for sale

The iconic Harbor Restaurant/Longboards Grill can be all yours for just $1,750,000. The owner is retiring after running the business for four decades and has priced his eateries to sell. The offering is for the business, licenses, and equipment only, as the city of Santa Barbara owns the building. There are 457 seats total with an ocean view from every table. A private valet parking lot is adjacent to the building and type 47, 58, 77 liquor licenses are included.

Photo by The Restaurant Guy

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Augie’s Tequila coming to downtown

Panera Bread, Left At Albuquerque, and Ma Dolce Vita were all once located at 700 State Street. The property has been vacant since July 2015. Last February reader Richard told me that local entrepreneur Chris Chiarappa had applied for a liquor license and eating place permit for that address and now I’m told that the business name will be Augie’s Tequila. In recent years Chiarappa has opened Corner Tap, Lighthouse Coffee, Mesa Burger, and M. Kitchen. A shared commercial kitchen named The Kitchen on State Street and possibly an ice cream spot on the Mesa are also part of Chiarappa’s future plans.

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