Ritz-Carlton Bacara Onboards Chefs for New Dining Concepts and Menu Updates
By Claudia Schou   |   June 17, 2021

The pandemic has inspired sweeping culinary changes throughout Santa Barbara, and notably at several area hotels where executive chefs work diligently to provide a refreshing new take on this unique era in dining. And hospitality is making a slow comeback as city nears the yellow tier of COVID reopening. Some hoteliers are utilizing their indoor-outdoor […]

From Cured Meats to Savory Soups, Local Deli Owners Stack it Up
By Claudia Schou   |   May 27, 2021

Some of Santa Barbara’s finest takeout options aren’t coming from established restaurants. The best gourmet grocers, delis, and bodegas are sprinkled throughout Santa Barbara’s diverse culinary neighborhoods. From classic sammies, subs, grinders, heroes, and hoagies (the subs’ Italian cousins), local deli owners continued to serve beleaguered foodies during the pandemic, combining the traditional art of […]

 

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Farmers’ Market Finds Make for Spring Salad Perfection
By Claudia Schou   |   May 20, 2021

When it comes to preparing the perfect spring salad, there’s no better place to start than your local farmers’ market. There you’ll find an abundance of lettuces, spring peas, green beans, apricots, artichokes, asparagus, fennel, radishes, cherries, mangoes, rhubarb, strawberries, Swiss chard, and zucchini in season. Popular herbs include basil, chives, cilantro, dill, mint, rosemary, […]

Celebrate Mother’s Day with Brunch, Dinner and Takeout at These Local Restaurants
By Claudia Schou   |   May 7, 2021

Celebrate your favorite moms this Mother’s Day by treating them to a special lunch at home or taking them out for a meal at one of these SB-area restaurants on May 9. Our roundup has something for everyone, including brunch and bubbly, multiple-course menus and delectable pastries for takeout. Reservations are strongly encouraged at most […]

Gardens Inspire Chefs’ Spring Menus
By Claudia Schou   |   May 6, 2021

After a long winter, spring is a welcome renewal. Chefs reinvigorate their menus with vibrant green peas, bright red tomatoes, wild herbs, and a variety of citrus. Inspired by local bounty and the natural beauty of our locale, restaurants are rolling out some of their best spring dishes yet. Some chefs utilize fresh herbs and […]

Hot Diggity Dog! Adventurous flavor combos elevate an American classic at Dave’s Dogs
By Claudia Schou   |   April 29, 2021

Ask a New Yorker about the ideal hot dog and they’ll likely say it’s a Nathan’s dog slathered in mustard and covered in sauerkraut, wrapped in tin foil. Another extreme might be the kind of exotic sausages – rabbit and rattlesnake, anyone? – served at hipster-friendly eateries like Wurstküche in Los Angeles. Whatever your passion […]

Our Favorite Spring Garden Inspirations
By Claudia Schou   |   April 22, 2021

Celebrate the season with dishes that make the most of its best and brightest produce and pair them with fresh selections from our local fish markets. Let’s start with Meyer lemons, which are sweet and famous for their herbal aroma. As a relish, this winter and early spring citrus pairs perfectly with fresh salmon. This […]

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Polenta Cake and Locker Room Banter
By Claudia Schou   |   April 8, 2021

Have you ever heard a baby cry and felt a sense of relief? It’s as if all of your bottled up emotions and the pressures of life get released with every little wail, like a valve letting out a bit of steam. I had this experience recently while I was standing on line at the […]

New Chef Brings Easy Going, Yet Sophisticated Cuisine to El Encanto
By Claudia Schou   |   March 11, 2021

There’s a new chef and fresh burst of inspiration in Belmond El Encanto’s kitchen. The Old Hollywood glamour-style hotel, perched on the Riviera, gets its first major menu change in four years, thanks to Bruno Lopez. He’s the former executive chef at the Ritz-Carlton Rancho Mirage and Raffles L’Ermitage Hotel in Beverly Hills and is […]

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UCSB Arts & Lectures presents “Chefs in Conversation,” with Samin Nosrat and Yotam Ottolenghi
By Claudia Schou   |   February 26, 2021

With their revolutionary perspective on the fundamentals of food preparation and flavor combinations, UCSB Arts & Lectures’ featured chefs Samin Nosrat and Yotam Ottolenghi represent a new paradigm of cooking ideals and styles. Moderated by Sherry Villanueva, Managing Partner at Acme Hospitality, “Chefs in Conversation” will feature the two James Beard Award-winning cooking book authors […]

Kitchen Memories Come Home
By Claudia Schou   |   February 25, 2021

A few nights ago, I woke up and couldn’t fall back asleep. Instead of counting sheep, I counted the number of great meals my family enjoyed at our old home in Long Beach’s historic Bluff Park neighborhood. My husband, Nick, and I recently put our Long Beach home on the market, thinking it might take […]

At Olio e Limone, It’s Amore
By Claudia Schou   |   February 18, 2021

Regular patrons of Olio e Limone are fans of the eatery’s Southern Italian fare as much as its owners Elaine and Alberto Morello. But there was a road that led the Sicilian chef and business partner wife to Santa Barbara. The two embarked on a business venture and romance that has lasted more than three […]

Weekend Cooking: Add Red Curry to Your Romance
By Claudia Schou   |   February 18, 2021

Making a commitment to someone you love is one thing. Committing your time and energy on a complex recipe is another. Keep your Valentine’s Day meals simple by focusing on using quality ingredients and placing flavor over ambition.   Silky and savory with warming spices, Asian curries are a welcome dish during the winter months. It […]

Community Love For Valentine’s Day
By Leslie Westbrook   |   February 11, 2021

Summerland merchants have banded together to spread some Valentine’s Day weekend community love this weekend! The town will be bursting with chocolate, flowers, cookies, champagne, pop-ups, tastings specials, and more.  Participating businesses include Red Kettle Coffee (heart shaped cookies), Garde, Mary Suding Antiques, Sweet Wheel Farms & Flowers, The Bikini Factory (20% off red and pink […]

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