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Sandbar
514 State St, Santa Barbara
Phone: (805) 966-1388

  • Category: Mexican
  • Hours: Monday 3pm-Close, Tuesday-Friday 11:30am-Close, Saturday/Sunday 11am-Close
  • Price: < $10
  • Serving: Dinner
  • Reservations: Yes, recommended
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Reviews by the General Public

Rip off, 5/2/2014
Reviewer: Jean from Santa Barbara, CA
My husband and I were in Santa Barbara. We decided to try this restaurant. It was okay food and okay atmosphere. When I got my credit card statement, they added an extra $5.13 to the total of my bill, rounding it up. I had already left a tip on the check. I called them and they did not even apologize, they just said that they would refund it back. This is only after they checked it out and I told them that I have the original credit card receipt, if I had not had it as proof, who knows. I wonder how many people have been overcharged at this restaurant without even knowing it???


They do not follow through with what they say
Reviewer: Gail Gower from Santa Barbara, CA
Months ago I completed a form to receive a Birthday Certificate. We were never told by the waitress that there would be an email sent out when it was entered into the computer. We went to dinner one night (to the Sand Bar) and I asked about the cards we completed and wanted to know when we would hear. She said they probably have not entered the information yet (odd since it had been a few months). I was in the restaurant a month ago and asked again and got the same information. I called today because my birthday is in 2 days and an owner said there was nothing he could do about it. He said it was against the law to give away free dinners without agreeing to their email. It was not his fault that my information was not logged in and that he thinks I did not write the information correctly on the entry card. I have very clear writing. I believe my phone number was on the card too so they could have called. Bottom line....as an owner I would believe the customer and make it right. The owner was NOT helpful at all! If you complete those cards make sure your waiter/waitress hands them in and ASK what else you need to do. They should not be handing out cards if they cannot accommendate their customers. Very poor marketing........the owner(s) just doesn't seem to be concerned. There are lots of other good restaurants in SB.


3 days in a row
Reviewer: Jenny from Lakewood, co
This place is amazing! My husband and I spent the last week in Santa Barbara and we ended up going to Sandbar 3 times. We always had great service, food was great for the price and 2 for 1 drinks with our dinner sealed the deal for us. We tried some other places but we kept going back to Sandbar. Go early though because this place is busy. I read the reviews and I don't understand why people would assume they should get Happy Hour everywhere? Restaurants in colorado only offer happy hour in the bar anyways?


SO MUCH FOR HAVING 2 FOR 1 HAPPY HOUR
Reviewer: Wendy from Santa Barbara, CA
Too bad this place offers a great happy hour 2 for 1 and an awesome atmosphere but they kill it in the 100 rules they have to be able to just be in a nice environment and hang with friends. They would be the #1 spot if they would relax with their rules. Can't have happy hour out on patio...you have to be in the bar which is very limited in seating as it is even for just a group of 4. If you sit in the patio you have to order dinner and the happy hour menu DOES NOT apply which is simply ridiculous! What does it matter what you order from what menu as long as you are spending your money there. Another negative is the service. Rude service across the board, the food isn't bad its actually pretty good. Its difficult to want to spend your money at a place where you aren't received with a friendly smile. Too bad its such a nice place with such negative attributes. Management needs to reconsider.


Awful service + Got salsa dumped on us
Reviewer: Ian from Santa Barbara, CA
It was my first time here and my immediate impression was great. Really well kept place and was really cool to eat by a fire pit. My impression quickly changed due to slow poor service, our waitress forgetting about us entirely, and to top it off we got salsa dumped on us by a server without an apology, or any type of compensation. It was in our hair and all over us and they just threw some napkins at us without saying a word. I will never eat here again


Sandbar Night/Day
Reviewer: James from Santa Barbara, CA
During the day Sandbar is a great place to catch a meal and enjoy the prime State St. location. The prices vary, but for the most part are under 10$. Margaritas are great and the service is good. At night Sandbar is the place to be. Thursday nights are great for college nights, but if this isn't the group for you, don't worry, every other night of the week is great with live music, awesome drink specials and a good crowd. This is especially true for Saturdays. Side note, if you eat here it is likely you'll need a to go box, the portions are generous.


Weak drinks, tasteless food, too many RULES
Reviewer: Nancy from Santa Barbara, CA
Went two times recently, both on Friday nights, so this review will reflect both experiences, both of which were subpar. The first time, with friends, the "skinny" margaritas (ripped off from Bethenny Frankel's creation) actually had some tequila in them and were quite good. Seafood enchiladas were awful - a few HARD cubes of tasteless fish drowning in cheese and sauce. I think Swanson frozen dinners are ten times better. No one else at our table was wowed by their food. Lot of rules and regs about where you can sit based on if you are planning to eat dinner or just drink. If you eat outside, which is 90% of the tables, they allow smokers to sit right next to you and blow smoke in your face. Luckily the food is so bland it isn't a loss there, only to your overall health and well-being. Second visit we sat in the bar to have the happy hour margaritas again. I guess if you smoke, you can sit by the firepit and just drink, but if you tell the hostess you just want booze, they make you sit inside at the bar- again - all those rules and regs - not cool. This time the margaritas were all mixer, not a spec of tequila could be tasted. Didn't even get a mild buzz on an empty stomach, after two cocktails. Our quesadilla appetizer was so greasy it left a bunch of ORANGE grease all over the plate. No seasoning or flavor, just a lot of cheese and grease. There are a hundred better places in SB than this for good mexican food, and even more places that actually put alcohol in the margaritas. To that cute blonde young man who bartends on friday night - I am not sure why you are trying so hard to save the owners money on liquor, you are only hurting the business because I sure won't be back.


Happy Hour Rip Off
Reviewer: Scott M from Santa Barbara, CA
Sandbar has happy hour from 4-8 advertised, but doesn't honor it past 7pm AND if you pay your check after 7pm they will charge you FULL PRICE for your drinks. The waitresses will also stay away from your table at the end of the happy hour to again force you to pay for full price drinks. This has happened to me several times now. There are dozens of reports of this between Yelp, Santa Barbara.com and the other review sites. Either don't visit them or make sure you pay for drinks AS YOU BUY THEM!


Rude
Reviewer: Jim from Santa Barbara, CA
Management is rude because they are not greeting people with respect. We were refused service before we even stepped in the door because we wanted to sit outside on the patio...Lame!!!!


Oh My Fajita!!!
Reviewer: Martha Sheehan from Phoenix, AZ
This is just a tip! I was staying at the Hotel Santa Barbara for a computer convention and it was eleven at night! I knew my pickings would be slim the concierge said there was a pizza place down the road or a mexican restaurant across the street that served till midnight. Well, I've had my share of bad luck when it comes to mexican but what the heck I decided to try it out..Pizza did not sound satisfying... WOW was I impressed beautiful restaurant and WARM with heaters everywhere and an amazing firepit! The food was incredible... the server said yeah we serve the whole menu till midnight! Unheard of and amazing sizzling hot fajitas! You have to get the fajitas combo with meat, chicken, shrimp and all the veggies make it yourself burritios! Just amazing! Warmed my belly! I will be here again! Just a tip FAJITAS! The restaurant eventually turned into a club and i met some poeple there and ended up staying all night! I did not behave my age! Oh well, Boy did I hurt in the morning... but BOY was it worth it!


What a great place!
Reviewer: Jules from Reseda, CA
I was up in SB for the weekend and went into Sandbar for drinks and dinner. It was happy hour so we each got two drinks for the price of just one.. great deal! I ordered the tacos dorados and my boyfriend had the steak fajitas. Both were amazing! The service was top-notch, very attentive and accommodating. The whole place is very cool and has a great atmosphere. Overall, I had a fabulous experience and will definitely be coming back next time I pass through town!


WOW, What a joke!!!!
Reviewer: Chris from Santa Barbara, CA
Customer: Can i sit in the front patio? Hostess: Are you eating? Customer: Maybe, just drinks for now but we will probably eat. Hostess: Well, if your not going to eat, you can not sit on the front patio. Customer: But your patio is empty! Hostess: If your not going to eat, you have to go out back (where it smells like sewer)!!! Customer: Thanks but no, I think I will take my $100+ bar tab somewhere else. This was what happend to me on my afternoon visit to Sand Bar. Several months later, I paid them another visit and went up to the bar and wow!! The bartender gve an attitude that I was doing HIM a favor by coming in? Save yourself the time and money and stay away from this place!!!


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