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Best Local Restaurants in Santa Barbara

When it comes to dining out, Marie Sue and I usually try our best to avoid going to the same old large franchise locations that you can find on every corner of every city in every state.  While they do serve great food, most of the time, large chain restaurants serve the exact same food, with nothing special or unique. If you have recently bought Santa Barbara real estate, or will be relocating to the Santa Barbara community soon, you will enjoy our take on the best local Santa Barbara restaurants. It's one more way to enjoy a bit of something “Santa Barbara Special” that just can’t be copied by a nationwide restaurant chain.

Best Santa Barbara Sandwich Shops

Renaud’s Patisserie and Bistro-the fried egg sandwich with bacon and mushrooms is phenomenal; you can also get an amazing, authentic cappuccino.

Three Pickles Deli-You must try the meatball sub; the handmade meatballs and a delicious blend of herbs, spices, meat and cheese and the homemade marina sauce is one an Italian grandmother would be proud of.

Panino-for the vegetarians out there, the Panino’s Avocado Sandwich with Honey Mustard is fantastic.
Bitterman’s Deli-A true “mom and pops” dining experience, as all of the owners and staff are family and superb at what they do! They create outstanding sandwiches and serve 5 different homemade soups every day.  The other cool thing? The shop is all themed around the show “Seinfeld” and serves sandwiches called “The Jerry” or “The Kramer”, etc. Also, if you work in the area, you can fax or call in your order to have it ready for quick pick-up!

Best Upscale Santa Barbara Dining

Bouchon (French, New American)-If you need a special date night location, then Bouchon is your place.  The food, service, décor and romantic atmosphere are all incredible. For dessert, we recommend the Blueberry Upside Down Cake with Lemon Zest Ice Cream.

Seagrass (Seafood)-Fine dining at its best can be found at Seagrass; not only do you enjoy a wonderful upscale dining atmosphere, but the wonderful and skilled wait staff are to be praised again and again for the outstanding service.  Their most popular menu items at the Tami Farms Roasted Beet Salad and the Striped Seabass Jumbo Diver Scallops. Enjoy!

Trattoria Vittoria (Italian)-The ambiance is very comfortable and cozy, while still providing an upscale dining experience perfect for a first date or special family gathering.  The homemade white wine sauce sausage ravioli is a customer favorite.

Tydes Restaurant & Bar (New American Variety)– An excellent fine dining option with breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean. Located as part of the Coral Casino Beach and Cabana Club, it offers indoor and outdoor seating.  For amazing appetizers, try the Mussels with the Chorizo and the Broccolini with the Parmesan and Chili Flakes.

Opal Restaurant & Bar (New American Variety)-Upscale ambiance embodying a bit of European Style featuring an impressive wine list and reasonable prices. The crab crostini is handmade and will melt in your mouth, while the lamb is superb.

Best Santa Barbara Ethnic Dining Options

Kobachi Izakaya Dining (Japanese, Sushi Bar)-Features fantastic izakaya style dining-think Japanese tapas. Excellent service and a wide variety of authentic Japanses dishes.

India House (Indian)-If you enjoy Indian food you will fall in love with the family owned India House restaurant. The casual yet authentic cultural setting is a wonderful experience. There is beautiful outdoor seating featuring vibrant colors, patters and plants for a cozy dining experience with amazing food choices.

El Paseo Mexican Restaurant (Mexican)-If you are looking for authentic Mexican food with a bit of Santa Barbara flavor, you will want to try El Paseo Mexican Restaurant. The homemade fresh tortillas, chips and salsa are to die for, and for any fans of margaritas, you have not had one until you try the signature one here-it is made with fresh fruits for an amazing flavor to complement their wide menu options. They feature authentic Mexican flavors, vegetarian dishes, vegan options and and mouth watering steaks. The Sunday brunch will have you coming back again and again.

Saigon In and Out Vietnamese Restaurant (Vietnamese)- A wonderful dining experience that offers authentic Vietnamese style dining. If you order the iced coffee you will enjoy not only a wonderful flavor experience, but also get to see how coffee is made, styled, and served in Vietnam through a coffee strainer. The Shrimp Hot Pot is a wonderful sweet and sour type dish that is a customer.

Adama Vegan Comfort Cuisine (All Vegan Food)-While Vegan may not be ethnic food, you will be able to find a wide variety of different types of cuisine, all updated to Vegan recipes. The casual atmosphere is perfect for lunch or dinner, and the food menu includes items like potato pancakes, which just melt in your mouth, and a very popular Chipotle Panini.

Mac’s Fish and Chip Shop (British, Fish & Chips)-British dishes at their finest can be found there at Mac’s, a long time locals favorite. The quick, friendly service and casual atmosphere make Mac’s the perfect place to hang out at lunch or after work. Their most popular menu items are the Fish and Chips and he Beef and Onion Pie-both you must try if you ever dine here.

Moving to Santa Barbara

We trust this list of favorite local Santa Barbara restaurants will benefit you! If you are relocating to Santa Barbara from out of town, or have family that will be traveling to see your new Santa Barbara real estate, then you will want to also check out our list of top Santa Barbara Hotels. Other Questions? Simply contact me, Stephanie Young or Marie Sue. We are your real estate experts specializing in Santa Barbara real estate.

Questions? Just Ask!

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