In case you missed the list of restaurants featured in last month’s Best of Santa Barbara issue of the Santa Barbara Independent, here is a summary crammed into one long paragraph:

Thai/Noodle Bar: Empty Bowl Gourmet Noodle Bar; Ice Cream: McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams; Frozen Yogurt: Yogurtland; Bakery: Renaud’s Patisserie & Bistro; Doughnuts: Spudnuts; Mexican/Burrito/Salsa: Los Agaves; Bagels: Jack’s Bistro & Famous Bagels; Goleta Restaurant: Kyle’s Kitchen; Carp Restaurant: Padaro Beach Grill; I.V. Restaurant: Freebirds World Burrito; Montecito Restaurant: The Honor Bar; SYV Restaurant: Industrial Eats; Appetizers/Tapas: Loquita; Breakfast: Cajun Kitchen; Late Night Eats: The Blue Owl; Salad Bar: Savoy Cafe & Deli; Chinese: China Pavilion; French: bouchon; Indian: Flavor of India; Italian: Ca’ Dario; Seafood/Clam Chowder: Brophy Bros.; Sushi: Arigato Sushi; Vegetarian/Vegan: Mesa Verde; Sandwich: South Coast Deli; Barbecue: Shalhoob Meat Co.; Steak House: Jill’s Place; Burger: The Habit Burger Grill; Breakfast Burrito: Super Cucas; Tacos: Lilly’s Taqueria; Pizza: Rusty’s Pizza Parlor; Service: The Palace Grill; Sidewalk Cafe/Patio: Shoreline Cafe; Coffee: Handlebar Coffee Roasters; Happy Hour: Lure Fish House; Brewery: Figueroa Mountain Brewing Co.; Wine List: Wine Cask; Bloody Mary/Sunday Brunch/Restaurant with a View: Boathouse at Hendry’s Beach; Stiffest Drinks: Joe’s Cafe; Juicery/Smoothie Bar: Blenders in the Grass



This just in from Black Sheep, 26 E. Ortega St:

Dim Sum Brunch: Hi everyone Black Sheep will be doing a dim sum pop up again on December 2nd from 11am -3pm!! Join chef Robert & chef Alex for a amazing dumpling day. You can make reservations by calling 805-965-1113
– Ruben



Reader Nick let me know about a new “underground” restaurant group called The Coterie Club that conducts popup dining events across the South Coast. Their web site describes the club as follows:

“A social & dining collective for likeminded individuals. Our events range from Fine dining avant-garde, to mid-century modern freak parties and soul food cook outs. It is a celebration of food & thought.”

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Reader Patrick sent a tip about Bossie’s Kitchen coming to the cow building at 901 North Milpas Street. Patrick says that a recent Craig’s List posting for available jobs describes the restaurant as follows:

“Bossie’s Kitchen is a new casual restaurant in Santa Barbara’s Upper Eastside, featuring a locally sourced farmers’ market concept and is seeking passionate and hard working team members. This is a chef-owned restaurant looking to hire candidates that want to be part of a team, and have desire to learn and grow. Our concept is fast-casual, counter service with seasonal menu items made daily from scratch. Bossie’s Kitchen will begin with dinner service, and we look forward to serving lunch and weekend brunch soon. In addition to our regular menu, we will offer a selection of local craft beer, wines from the Central Coast, Happy Hour, and online orders for guests to pick up on their way home or on their way to a picnic.”



Celebrate the warmth of Thanksgiving with “The Gobble Song” by local legends Spencer the Gardener.

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Reader Jennifer says that a sign for Eloise LLC has appeared at 901 North Milpas Street, the famous building with a cow on the roof, and the former home of Mundos, Sublime, Cities Barbecue, and City Kitchen.  I recently wrote that Mundos sold their business to chefs Lauren Herman and Christina Olufson who are planning a new restaurant there but I did not know the name. It appears that Eloise LLC has filed a fictitious business name statement to open a restaurant at 901 North Milpas Street using the name Bossie’s Kitchen.



Reader Cris spotted a new sign for Sup & Jus which is opening in a couple of weeks inside Kyle’s Kitchen located at 7000 Hollister Avenue in Goleta. Their web site is currently accepting applications for cashier, prep, and shift lead positions. Sup & Jus  describes the business as follows: “Grab and go, healthy, delicious and affordable food. We focus on fresh pressed juice, pre-made sandwiches, salads, as well as soups, freshly baked bread, breakfast items, coffee, and beer and wine. Sup & Jus was inspired by [owner] Jay and Deena Ferro’s trip to Spain a few years back. After falling in love with the Mercat de la Boqueria in Barcelona, they decided to launch Goleta’s own version, as a place for busy people to shop for fresh, simple, affordable food. They are also the founders of local Santa Barbara/Goleta Restaurants Kyle’s Kitchen and Silvergreens.”




Here is a Thanksgiving update from Restaurant Connection:

Hi John,
Just wanted to inform you and the readers that Restaurant Connection will be open and available for delivery orders on Thanksgiving Day.

Special Thanksgiving Menus will be offered by:

– Stella Mare’s
– Chase Bar & Grill
– Dargan’s
– Sunshine Cafe
– Due Lune
– Crocodile Grill
– Wine Bistro

There are about 15 other restaurants that will be open and offering their regular menus for Thanksgiving. Wine delivery and alcohol delivery is also available. To view the menus and full list of restaurants visit It is encouraged (not required) to place orders in advance.

Thank you!



Last week I passed a tip from reader SBMizzou that the old El Pollo Loco location at 5796 Calle Real in Goleta is going to become an Indian restaurant that is owned by the same owners of Sushi Teri and Nikka Ramen, etc. Reader Bill tells me that there is a new sign on the building that reveals the name of the restaurant: Masala Spice.



Readers Adria and Jim let me know that Red Pepper at 282 Orange Avenue in Goleta has closed indefinitely. Red Pepper’s voice mail confirms this and says they will open “at a later date.” I have not received word about why they are closed.



It’s tamale season! Local Chef Richard Lambert teaches the techniques he uses to make his
award-winning tamales and salsas. This year’s 90-minute class is set for Saturday, December 8th, from noon to 1:30 p.m. The classroom is located at 125 Harbor Way, near the Maritime Museum at the breakwater. Each attendee will be served a variety of tamale samples and be shown how each flavor can be created at home. Additional class handout materials include escamocha (tropical fruit dessert), recipes, a listing of ingredient sources, plus tamale reheating and storage guidelines. Attendees also receive the free ebook version of Mr. Lambert’s cookbook, “Preheat to 350 Degrees,” featuring recipes along with personal anecdotes gathered over his lifetime. Tuition is $45 per person and class attendance is limited to 30 participants. Enroll online at

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Readers JJ and Steve tell me that an announcement for the pending arrival of Alito’s has been taped to the wall at 509 State Street, the former home of Cadiz restaurant which closed last June. Word on the street is that Alito’s is a new culinary project from Ali Ahlstrand, owner of Mollie’s restaurant on State Street.

Photo by reader Steve.

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Reader Annie says that Laplace Wine Bar & Shop at 205 Santa Barbara Street has closed. Google reports that the Funk Zone business is permanently closed, their phone is disconnected, and their Facebook page has been taken down. Their web site says they are open as usual but it is not uncommon for a departing business to make updating their web site a low priority. Laplace Wine Bar & Shop opened in 2016.



The Garden at Santa Barbara Public Market, 38 West Victoria Street, has started serving a variety of fresh-made burgers. The menu includes Cali Burger (double meat, Havarti cheese, avocado, pickles, jalapeño aioli, $10.95), Bacon Burger (bacon, meat, sharp cheddar,garlic aioli, $10.95), Blue’s Burger (double meat, creamy blue cheese, garlic aioli, $10.95), The American (double meat, American cheese, pickles, mustard, ketchup, $9.95), and Cheese Burger (meat, American cheese, pickles, mustard, ketchup, $7.95). All burgers come with a side of fries, butter lettuce, tomato, and charred onion. In the future The Garden plans to offer a gourmet fries menu, including cheese fries, truffle Parmesan fries, blue cheese with chili fries, and more.



Last week I published a list of South Coast restaurants serving a traditional turkey meal on Thanksgiving Day. Reader Laura sent me a list of restaurants that are open on Thanksgiving Day but not necessarily serving the traditional feast: Actor’s Corner Café, Aebleskiver Café, Belgian Café, Big Bopper Drive-In, Cafe Dolce, Cecco Ristorante, Copenhagen Sausage Garden, Danish Mill Bakery, First & Oak Restaurant at the Mirabelle Inn, Hummingbird Restaurant, Mad and Vin at the Landsby, Old Danish Food Farm/Fudge Kitchen, Olsen’s Danish Village Bakery, Pho 805, Red Viking Restaurant, River Grill Restaurant & Bar, Root 246, Solvang Bakery, Solvang Flavors, Solvang Restaurant, The Stone Cow, and Viking Garden Restaurant. View address and phone numbers.

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Readers Peter and Violet passed the word that Khao Kaeng by Empty Bowl Gourmet Noodle Bar has opened at 1187 Coast Village Road in Montecito, taking over the downstairs space once occupied by Here’s The Scoop before they moved upstairs. Khao Kaeng’s web site describes the business as follows: “Khao Kaeng, showcases the evolutionary Thai cuisine of Chef’s Nui with the brilliant reputation gained from sister restaurant Empty Bowl Gourmet Noodle Bar at Santa Barbara’s Public Market. In 2014, Nui with partners, Jerry Lee and Emre Balli, opened Empty Bowl bringing classic comfort traditional Thai dishes specializing in farmer’s market organic, all-natural and free-range products. Khao Kaeng’s cuisine is expanded beyond the noodle bar but conveys the same culture of family recipes inspired from Nui’s home of Bangkok and uses the highest quality ingredients. Khao Kaeng translates to ‘Curry on Rice’ and offers unique menu items to Coast Village Road in Montecito as well as a wine cellar of over 300 bottles to compliment the fiery and savory Thai cuisine.”

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Reader Kellan let me know that Sunny Korean Restaurant, which opened at 532 State Street in September 2017, has closed its doors for good.

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Readers Jonathan and Scott let me know that Wildwood Kitchen, which opened in December 2015 at 410 East Haley Street, has closed. Here is a message to you from management that is posted on the window:

“Hello BBQ Enthusiasts: Thank you for coming down. Unfortunately, despite our efforts we have not been making (Burnt) Ends Meat (Ha!) and we need to close our doors and focus on the Catering Events that we have booked through December 31, 2018. We will also be hosting a few pop-ups between now and the end of the year. If you want to keep in touch with those happenings give us a follow @wildwoodkitchensb on Instagram or join our mailing list via our website We are sorry for the inconvenience.”



Each November my inbox is swamped with the same question: Which restaurants serve a traditional turkey dinner on Thanksgiving Day? This week, I made a hundred phone calls to find the answer. Make your reservations early because many places will sell out, and if the place you’d like to go is already sold out this year, then make reservations at least three months in advance next year.

Though I have included information about a turkey dinner, other entrées may be available.  Restaurants joining my 12th annual Thanksgiving list this year include The Bistro at the Bacara, The Brewhouse, First & Oak, IHOP, The Monarch,  Pea Soup Andersen’s, Rodney’s Grill, and Sunshine Café.

The popular Stonehouse and Plow & Angel restaurants at the San Ysidro Ranch have never missed a year on the list, until now. We wish them a speedy recovery from the devastating Montecito flood.

  • Alys Restaurant; Solvang; $85; 4-7:30pm; 697-7082
  • Bacara: Angel Oak (sold out); $125; 5-10pm; 571-4220
  • Bacara: Banquet Room; $139 adults, $65 ages 3-12; 10:30am-2:30pm; 571-4220
  • Bacara: The Bistro; $85, 1130-10pm, 571-4220
  • Ballard Inn Restaurant; $95; 3-8pm; 800-638-2466
  • The Bear and Star; Fess Parker Wine Country Inn; $59 adults, $20 ages 12 and below; noon-5pm; 688-7788
  • Bella Vista (sold out);  Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore; $140; 11am-7pm; 969-2261
  • Blackbird; Hotel Californian; $115 adults, $55 ages 4-12; 5-10pm; 882-0135
  • Black Sheep; $65; 5-10pm; 965-1113
  • bouchon (sold out); $85; 3:30-8:30pm; 730-1160
  • Brothers Restaurant; Red Barn, Santa Ynez; $75 adults, $35 ages 12 and below; 1-6pm; 688-4142
  • The Buffet; Chumash Casino Resort; $39 adults, $14.95 ages 12 and below; 1-9pm; 686-0855
  • Ca’ Dario Ristorante & Pizzeria; ~$30; 3-10pm; 884-9419
  • Cold Spring Tavern; $70 adults, $35 kids; 11am-7:45pm; 967-0066
  • Convivo Restaurant; Santa Barbara Inn; $65 adults, $20 ages 12 and below; 11am-9pm; 845-6789
  • Crocodile Restaurant & Bar; Lemon Tree Inn; $28; noon-9:30pm; 687-6444
  • Dargan’s Irish Pub & Restaurant; $25.95; 11:30am-9pm; 568-0702
  • Dining Room (sold out); Belmond El Encanto; $115 adults, $45 kids; 3-10pm; 845-5800
  • Finch & Fork; Kimpton Canary Hotel; $90 adults, $35 ages 10 and below; 2-7pm; 879-9100
  • First & Oak; Mirabelle Inn, Solvang; $65; 5-8pm; 688-1703
  • Frog Bar & Grill; Glenn Annie Golf Course; $45 adults, $19 ages 12 and below; 11am-3pm; 968-0664
  • Harbor Restaurant; $75 adults, $15.95 ages 10 and below; noon-9pm; 963-3311
  • Harry’s Plaza Café; $26.95; 11am-11pm; 687-2800
  • Helena Avenue Bakery; everything but turkey; takeout with at least two days’ notice; priced à la carte; 880-3383
  • High Sierra Grill & Bar; $17.99 adults, $9.99 ages 12 and below; 7am-4pm; 845-7030
  • Holdren’s Steaks & Seafood; $33; noon-8:30pm; 965-3363
  • IHOP; $12.99; 7am-9pm; no reservations needed
  • Jack’s Bistro & Famous Bagels; takeout only, order by November 16; $175 feeds 10 people, $15.95 by the plate; 319-0155
  • Joe’s Café; ~$26; noon-9pm; 966-4638
  • Live Oak Café; Best Western Plus Encina Lodge & Suites; $25; 11am-4pm; 845-5193
    Louie’s California Bistro; The Upham; $58 adults, $27.50 ages 12 and below; 2-6:30pm; 963-7003
  • Moby Dick Restaurant; $29.99; 11-8:30pm; 965-0549
  • Montecito Wine Bistro; $60 adults, $30 ages 12 and below; 11am-6pm; 969-7520
  • Mulligan’s Café & Bar; Santa Barbara Golf Club; $30.99 adults, $16.99 ages 10 and below; noon-5pm; 682-3228
  • Pea Soup Andersen’s; Buellton; $23.95 adults, $16.95 ages 10 and below; 11am-8pm; 688-5581
  • Rodney’s Grill; Hilton Santa Barbara Beachfront Resort; $55; 5-9:30pm; 884-8554
  • Root 246; $69 adults, $35 ages 12 and below; 3-9pm; 686-8681
  • Roy; $65; 3-9pm; 966-5636
  • Sunshine Café; price to be determined; 7am-2pm; 898-9121
  • The Brewhouse; $37.99 adults, $12 ages 10 and below; 11am-6pm; 884-4664
  • The Monarch; $95; 11am-7pm; 869-0789
  • Shoals Restaurant; Cliff House Inn; ~$65; 2-7pm; 652-1381
  • Stella Mare’s; $58 adults, $28 ages 12 and below; noon-8pm; 969-6705
  • Tee-Off Restaurant & Lounge; $26.95; 3-9pm; 687-1616
  • Treehouse Restaurant; Best Western Plus Pepper Tree Inn; $22; noon-8pm; 687-2426
  • Willows; Chumash Casino Resort; $65; 3-9pm; 686-0855
  • Wine Cask; $75 adults, $35 ages 12 and below; 5-9pm; 966-9463
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Here is a press-release from ACME Hospitality:


The Lark, Les Marchands, Loquita and Lucky Penny Join 805 Living’s Challenge to Support Dream Foundation this November and December

WHO: Acme Hospitality: The Lark, Lucky Penny, Loquita and Les Marchands Restaurant & Wine Merchant in Santa Barbara’s Funk Zone, 805 Living’s Dishing it Out for Charity Challenge and Dream Foundation.

WHAT: ACME HOSPITALITY properties The Lark, Lucky Penny, Loquita and Les Marchands Restaurant & Wine Merchant join 805 Living’s Dishing it Out for Charity challenge this holiday season. During November and December 2018, ACME chefs show their support for Dream Foundation – the only national dream-granting organization for terminally-ill adults, by serving a specialty dish and pledging $2 for every order sold to the charity.

The Lark Executive Chef Jason Paluska chooses The Lark Cheeseboard with St. Andre French Brie, Ellwood Canyon Strawberry Jam, Rosemary-Spiced Almonds, Blackberries and Seeded Lavash Crackers; Les Marchands Chef Weston Richards is serving Steamed Santa Barbara Mussels with Green Curry Coconut Broth, Crispy French Fries, Mint, and Cilantro (dinner only); Loquita Executive Chef Peter Lee offers his signature Mariscos Paella with Catalina Sea Ranch Mussels, Argentinian Shrimp, Calamari and Lemon; and Lucky Penny Chef Ron Batdorf features the Nduja Pizza with House-Made Nduja Sausage, Manchego, Spring Onion and Oregano.

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Wine Cask at 813 Anacapa Street tell me that they will be offering a free glass of wine on Tuesday 11/6 to anyone who presents a voting receipt or voting sticker.



Grubhub acquired SBMenus operations on Oct. 30. This was part of a larger announcement made in September that Grubhub would acquire certain assets of 11 franchisee-owned OrderUp food delivery markets that included SBMenus.



Here is a press-release from The Bear and Star restaurant at 2860 Grand Avenue in Los Olivos:

Chef John Cox and the Culinary Team Welcome Los Angeles Chef Kevin Meehan of Kali

WHO:  Chef/Partner John Cox, The Bear and Star, Los Olivos, California and special guests, Chef Kevin Meehan of Kali in Los Angeles, California

WHAT: Los Olivos’ The Bear and Star, serving “Refined Ranch Cuisine” inspired by the Parker family at the eponymous Fess Parker Wine Country Inn, continues their collaborative Chef’s Table Dinners with the critically acclaimed Chef Kevin Meehan on Wednesday, December 5, 2018. The five-course tasting dinner featuring exquisite dishes by Chef Meehan and Chef John Cox staged in The Bear and Star’s state-of-the-art Chef’s Room blends products raised on the Fess Parker Ranch with further inspiration from Santa Barbara County.

After an Amuse Bouche the Chef’s Table Dinner begins with “Crowded Beach” –– Assorted Shellfish from Santa Barbara prepared in several ways; a course of Escarole with Wagyu Beef “Bacon,” Quail Egg and Clothbound Cheddar; then Black Barley Risotto with Black Garlic and Fiscalini Cheese. For the main course, guests will enjoy Fess Parker Ranch Lamb with Koji, Autumn Crown Squash, Syrah and Burnt Orange. The evening is completed with a dessert course of Meringue Gelato with Sugar-Cured Egg Yolks.

Expect stellar wine pairings from Santa Barbara County and beyond, curated by The Bear and Star’s General Manager Allison Crawford.

Pricing is $89 per guest for the dinner. Optional wine pairings are recommended at a supplementary charge of $50. The Chef’s Table seatings are available at 6:30 and 7:30 p.m. For more information, the public may call 805-686-1359; to reserve seats, visit Tock for tickets.

For guests seeking an enhanced Fess Parker experience, the Fess Parker Wine Country Inn offers a preferred rate on Wednesday, December 5, 2018, to guests booking the Chef’s Table Dinner at The Bear and Star. To book the KALI rate at the Fess Parker Wine Country Inn, call the Inn at 805.688.7788 or email and mention KALI. Room availability is limited for this offer and available only on December 5, 2018.

Upcoming 2019 dates for The Bear and Star’s Chef Table Dinners with notable guest chefs Valerie Gordon, chef/owner Valerie Echo Park in Los Angeles on February 18, 2019; and Nancy Silverton, chef/owner of the Mozza Restaurant Group on March 26, 2019. Other Guest Chefs to be announced.

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I am wondering if there are any places in town that will deep fry a turkey for you on Thanksgiving Day so you can pick it up and just take it home. I’d love a deep fried turkey but will not allow one to be made at home.





On my way to Los Arroyos in Goleta, I noticed work going on in the old El Pollo Loco location.  A worker said it’s going to be an Indian restaurant.  It’s owned by the same owners of Sushi Teri and Nikka Ramen, etc.

Reader sbmizzou

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The Black Sheep at 26 E. Ortega Street is having a pop-up dinner benefit tonight, Monday 11/5. All proceeds will go to their friend, and line cook, Alex (@alexander_fresno) , along with his roommates, who recently lost everything in a fire. Everything will be available a la carte, and prices will be a suggested donation. So come by, have a bite, or the full menu, and support a good cause.

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Here is an update from Rodney’s Grill at Hilton Santa Barbara Beachfront Resort, 633 East Cabrillo Boulevard:

Rodney’s Thanksgiving Feast, 5-9:30pm, 805-884-8554

To begin, choice of

  • Pumpkin soup cappuccino: Charred fennel espuma, pomegranate, nutmeg essence
  • Endive Salad: Golden beets, watercress, Asian pear, purple haze goat cheese, preserved lemon vinaigrette, Spiced Cashew
  • Foie Gras Panna Cotta: Persimmon gelée, Vadouvan pistachio, mini brioche Loaf
  • Wild Mushroom Fricassee: Warm roasted mushrooms, fall spiced butternut squash puree, crisp shallot, endive, parsley, Aged balsamic

To indulge, choice of:

  • Grilled New York Strip $65: Celery root, bacon lardon, wild mushroom, parsley essence
  • Turkey $55: Yukon gold whipped potato, candied yam puree, stuffing, Brussel sprouts, cranberry sauce, Pan gravy
  • Barramundi $55: Lobster risotto, leeks, caramelized endive, tarragon emulsion
  • Eggplant $45: Confit heirloom eggplant, quinoa, roasted shallot, Brussel sprout, piquillo pepper puree, lemon

To conclude, pie tasting:

  • Pumpkin Pie: Chantilly cream
  • Apple Pie: streusel
  • Pecan Pie: chocolate sauce
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This just in from The Monarch at 1295 Coast Village Road in Montecito:

Hi John,

Wanted to share some more fun news from The Monarch this week! For Thanksgiving, Phillip Frankland Lee and Margarita Kallas-Lee are excited to offer a very special holiday menu, filled with dishes their families made each year while growing up. There are two seatings, from 11am-2pm, and then again from 4-7pm. In order to make reservations, contact the restaurant directly at 805.869.0789.

Below please find the family-style menu that everyone will enjoy, available for $95/person. A credit card will be required to hold tables; please note, cancellation within 72 hours will incur a $50/person fee, and no-shows will incur a $75/person fee.

Endive Salad: apple, candied walnuts, parmesan, truffled crème fraiche dressing
Pumpkin Agnolotti: pumpkin soubise, sage, brown butter, pepitas, anacapa
Vermillion Snapper Crudo: papaya confit, passionfruit vinaigrette, finger lime, fried capers, cilantro, mint, basil

DINNER: Herb-Roasted Local Turkey, Turkey Gravy, Orange Cranberry Sauce, Parker House Rolls With Cultured Butter, Sourdough Stuffing, Mashed Potatoes, Sweet Potato Gratin, Green Bean And Button Mushroom Almandine, Roasted Brussels Sprouts (Truffle Supplement Available)

DESSERT: Pumpkin Pie, brown butter, apples, crumble, torched meringue

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Yelp reports that the local dining institution known as the Santa Barbara Brewing Company at 501 State Street has closed. A new food and drink destination known as Cruisery will open in its place in the near future.

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Readers Glenna and DeeDee let me know that See’s Candy is opening a location immediately next to Sushi Teri on Calle Real in Goleta.

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