Categories: Travel Guide

The Weekender’s Guide to Santa Barbara: Wine, Bread & More Wine


anta Barbara has everything you could want in a getaway. Beautiful beaches, world-class vineyards and a huge variety of amazing restaurants, all within one hours drive of the city center. This was our first (and definitely not last) visit to Santa Barbara and here are all of the must-visit spots we think you’ll love.

Best Restaurants in Santa Barbara

Bibi Ji is the type of restaurant you want to spend all night. The $50 tasting menu will impress you not only with the quantity of food but by the amazing Indian flavors and dishes. The natural wine pairing was the best we’ve ever experienced.

Smithy has the most beautiful backyard that is quintessential California. Olive trees, gas lamps all paired with local ingredients and the pizza we still remember today.

Oat Bakery is run by a husband and wife team and offers the type of old-World breads we love. The loaf of turmeric sourdough is what we can’t wait to try again and proves that not all carbs are not good for you.

Outpost at The Goodland is Palm Springs meets 60’s California beach town. We absolutely loved the chicken wings in a base of fish sauce and the baos are the best in Santa Barbara.

The Good Lion features a weekly rotating cocktail menu prepared with the freshest ingredients from nearby farms this is a top spot in SB for craft cocktails.

Best Wineries in Santa Barbara

Brave & Maiden is the newest Estate Winery in Santa Barbara offering intimate tasting experiences of their sustainably farmed, handcrafted wines. Their wines are crafted to stand up to the best dishes all over the world and this lineup of Reds was amazing.

Happy Canyon is a family owned and operated estate vineyard on the eastern most edge of the Santa Ynez Valley. We got a chance to meet the head winemaker, Sean Pitts, and he shared with us the plots on the estate (named after his kids and wife) and all of his favorite wines in a personal one-to-one session thanks to Sustainable Vine.

Sustainable Vine is a Tesla Model X that whisked us away to small family vineyards like Happy Canyon and got us access to private tastings with the winemakers of each vineyard.

Where to Stay in Santa Barbara

Kimpton Goodland is a boutique surf hotel in Goleta, CA just 15 minutes from downtown Santa Barbara and 15 minutes to the beach. It’s a mid-century modern motel layout that oozes with amazing spots to take photos. They even have locations on the property designed just for IG.

The onsite restaurant, Outpost SB had some of the best chicken wings we’ve had in recent memory and they’re known for their top notch pork buns. Make sure to tell them we sent you when you make your reservation, you may be in for a surprise 🙂

Andrew Wise

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Andrew Wise

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