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Mama Lu
415 N. Milpas St, Santa Barbara
Phone: (805) 966-1088

Reviews by the General Public

Cold food
Reviewer: Mike F. from Santa Barbara, CA
Maybe they should put a microwave at the end of the buffet because they are NOT going to turn up the steam table. The food is good for the price but it is the coldest buffet in town.

turn up the heat
Reviewer: Michael from Santa Barbara, CA
The buffet for lunch is a bargain but please please turn up the steam table heat.

Don't Be Afriad... Look For The Real Menu!
Reviewer: Benjamin from Santa Barbara, CA
This restaurant is fantastic! The thing is, while they serve what would be "American" Chinese food (good, but nothing great), it's their Taiwanese food that's AWESOME! This is only found on their Chinese menu... but don't be scared! The staff are very accommodating and willing to help translate for you, and trust me, it's well worth it. I have been slowly working my way through the menu and I have yet to be disappointed.

This is real Chinese/Taiwanese food!!
Reviewer: Cindy Huang from Santa Barbara, CA
I am from Taiwan; I've try so many "American-Chinese" food in US.. And I can tell Mama Lu's food taste just like what I had in Taiwan and China~ Golden the owner is very friendly; small place but make you feel like home. worth to give it a try!!!!

Bland, bland, bland
Reviewer: CML from Santa Barbara, CA
Tried this buffet for the first time a few days ago. I love to go to buffets for the chance to taste a wide variety of food. We came in early for lunch and the buffet looked really good and fresh. What a big disappointment! Nothing had any flavor. Many of the dishes did not have any sauce at all. Beef & Broc.? That is just what you got. No sauce, no flavor. Sweet & sour pork? Just enough sauce to make the dish pink. Noodles? No flavor. Rice? Dry & flavorless. Nothing I tried is worth going back for. Service was ok for a buffet. My water was refilled and we also got a "thank you" when we left. That is something I rarely hear in a Chinese restaurant.

OK, better than last time
Reviewer: Mike F. from Santa Barbara, CA
I believe in trying a place more than once and I must admit the food was better than the first time. I wasn't the only customer wondering why the staff was yelling at each other. They were so loud, however, I don't think they were angry they just yell at each other. This is one ugly restaurant, perhaps some plants indoors would help.

The egg foo yung is amazing!!
Reviewer: Lisa Anne from Santa Barbara, CA
The best news is that they deliver, free!!! We order in at least once a week and the drivers are so courteous. Once they delivered the wrong rice and they actually came back to the house with the correct order, amazing!! We have enjoyed everything, so far. I totally recommend this place!!

Pretty Good Food, cheap place to fill up on Chinese
Reviewer: Glenn from Buellton
I can't remember what the other Chinese buffets in town cost but this is a good deal if want to fill up on Chinese for $9. They have a wide selection and the food was mostly good. Nits I found were some uncooked rice and some flies in the windows. The people were nice though when I went(don't expect much service for a buffet) and they have an extensive non Buffet menu which apparently has authentic stuff from other reviewers. Decor is not the best. They changed out the food regularly at the buffet.

Not worthy of going back
Reviewer: Leonard from Santa Barbara, CA
First time eating there for their lunch buffet. Food not quite even average and there was not one item that was HOT. The hot and sour soup was just luke warm and the rest of the food the same or just room temperature.....which made me a little worried about food safety. Luke warm meat and fish dishes sitting in 'warming' dishes don't make it. Hot food should be served HOT. Sorry, not a repeat customer here. Like most buffets...other than dropping off my drink, no other employee contact....and a 'thank you' after I paid, would have been nice.

Better Chinese Cuisine
Reviewer: Michael from Santa Barbara, CA
Good balance of flavors. Real broths in the soups. Great fried rice. On the spicy-hot side. Good people.

will come back for the Hot Pot
Reviewer: ray from Santa Barbara, CA
Found this new place from this website. The owner is very friendly and attentive. Tried the buffet which is tasty and fairly cheap. Learned about the Taiwanese Hot Pot. Will come back for that.

Authentic Home Style Chinese Food
Reviewer: Katie from Santa Barbara, CA
Had the buffet today. Everything is so delicious! Especially the chow mien - I think that is their signature dish. The owner and the servers are very nice and attentive. We are going to be regulars at this place.

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