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Wildwood Kitchen
412 East Haley St, Santa Barbara
Phone: (805) 845-3995


Reviews by the General Public

Wildwood Cafe at the art Museum, 4/9/2018
Reviewer: Laurie from Santa Barbara, CA
Three of us had lunch on Saturday - we were the only ones there, sadly. All ordered salads, all delicious and large. I had the Thai Cobb with smoked chicken added.Friends both had the kale salad with the smoked chicken. The menu is pared down from the parent restaurant, so if you are looking for tons of meat offerings you won't find them here. Each day there is a meat sandwich special Nice service from the young man who took our orders at the counter, accommodated special requests, and made and delivered our salads and a sandwich to go. You get your own napkins and silverware and to-go boxes, which I don't mind at all but that's why 4.5 stars, as not full service. I hope they get more word of mouth and survive.


Dead on a Saturday afternoon?
Reviewer: Christine from Santa Barbara, CA
Came to The Mill for the first time to try Third Window Brew and Wildwood kitchen, on Saturday 9/17 at 11:30 am. Website for The Mill says open at 10, 3rd Window open at 11, Wildwood open at 11:30. With no one around at 11:30 except for a few workers opening shop, the place was very quiet. It's an interior courtyard space that all the businesses open out onto. After wandering around for a few minutes, we walked through the patio seating near Wildwood and into the restaurant to ask if they were open and were told "yes" and to please seat ourselves. Our waitress took our entire meal to warm up to us, at first she seemed very put off by having to serve us. I had smoked chicken leg with a side salad, pickles were good, salad was a great size (larger than I was expecting), flavorful Ranch dressing, chicken had great smoke, I would have preferred the meat to be cooked longer (too moist and fatty). Tritip sandwich was delicious, good smoke, moist meat, but french fries were cold and limp (not soggy). BBQ sauces were tasty but not necessary, the meats were good on their own. Third Window opened at noon. We were at The Mill until 1:30 and there was hardly any customers at any of the businesses. The location is off the normal paths though (Milpas or State or Funk Zone) and no on-site parking.


Terrific place but not for salads.
Reviewer: Vivian from Santa Barbara, CA
I went there for first time with my husband and friends. The place is terrific!! So beautiful decoration, I loved the style. The bathroom it's amazing! I loved the sensors to wash hands. I am only worried about how much water is wasted. Maybe that should be ajusted. I loved the entrée delicious and well done. I ask for salad but that was not as good as I expect. I was so disappointed. It was call Thai something salad. Also the price for that salad was expensive, it doesn't even come with a piece of Bread. Salad, not good that all. Some of my friends have ate meat, that looked so much better.


Walk on the wild side of town - did I mention the pickles?
Reviewer: Jinelle from Santa Barbara, CA
So much to like about this new restaurant Wildwood Kitchen on East Haley Street (Funk Zone) in Santa Barbara, from the Juliene folks who set the highest standard for creative casual cuisine in this town. They appear to be big fans of 'Texas style" BBQ and realized that a major high-quality smoked and grilled meat gap existed in this town.

Their off-beat location is refreshing trend away from the main tourist areas into the fringes of the working class, industrial zone doing a beautiful remake of a former warehouse which is now a very engaging indoor outdoor location. One wants to linger during the nice evenings outdoors.

If you come saying I will have meat with my pickles you will leave a very happy diner. Who knew homemade "bread and butter" pickles side garnish would become the main draw in a full restaurant so carefully thought out, but they are hauntingly good.

DH had the brisket and declared it to be mouth-watering tender and delicious. I had the pork ribs, but was not as pleased: dry and the slightly too hot rub overwhelmed any possible taste of pork. They were edible and yummy, but not wonderful and I would not order them again.

The three sauces did nothing to enhance what was already over-seasoned and stand alone on their own. Side choices were coleslaw and BBQ beans. A little too heavy on the raisins in the otherwise fine cole slaw for my tastes, but the beans needed a lot more simmering to go from crunchy to tender and the bean saucing itself was undistinguished.

(Gawd, do I dare say it but these folks need to survey Mo's BBQ in Pismo Beach for more BBQ exploration, beyond this more austere Texas version for their pork, slaw and BBQ beans? There, I said it.)

No question we will be back (did I already mention the pickles?) and explore their sausage offerings and my turn to try the brisket. Sorry their pork ribs were not top of their game.

I hope they can get better in that regard so they can earn a 100% recommendation instead of a mere 93% recommendation. Portions were large and those pork ribs did just fine the next day cold, but still I will put my own money on Mo's (Pismo) for this particular menu option.

The metal trays for plates and the slab of a slightly eggy white bread was coy I suppose, but not sure why it was necessary. Food matters first, so Wildwood Kitchen is off to an excellent start but still has horizons to explore for more refinement.

Best wishes to them and we will be back. Soon. Service was prompt and very pleasant. They have a good team. Just remember, go for the pickles and stay for the meat.


Nice Debut
Reviewer: Quatre from Santa Barbara, CA
The entire complex down on Haley and Laguna deserves attention -- some things might be a little hipsteresque, but everyone's doing good work. I thought this especially about Wildwood after a lunch there recently. They are focussed on quality ingredients and preparation, and turn out attractive food. Nice choices with local wine - some of the best in the county for fair prices. And (I love this) they can make a mean pickle! A lot of trendy places are doing that, but most aren't doing it well. It makes a difference when you do -- that's why this place has promise.


I'm hard to please...
Reviewer: Cynthia from Santa Barbara, CA
I went in with the expectations of eating over-cooked BBQ. How does a restaurant satisfy all taste buds? I come from a family with long history of BBQ. My taste buds are hard to please. I ordered the brisket plate, and with much to my surprise I have to say that it was not dry but moist and had a nice smoke ring to it. I was impressed. Cocktails were amazing! We had the jalapeno infused tequila margarita and the lavender basil martini. Side dishes were awesome too! We had the roasted beets, mac n' cheese, and roasted sweet potatoes with the special. I will become a frequent customer and happy we have "real BBQ" restaurant in Santa Barbara. Claudia was our server, and she did very well. She seemed like she enjoyed her job and didn't seem fake. Very great customer service!!! *side note...the potato salad had a strong onion flavor and was a bit overpowering. It took away from the rest of the ingredients. Maybe you should switch the onions and try a mild flavor, such as shallots, scallions or small amount of what you use now.


A new twist on traditional barbecue
Reviewer: Marty from Santa Barbara, CA
We ate there in the afternoon. There is seating inside however, with the lovely sunshine we sat outside on the enclosed patio. The wait staff was very attentive. I'm a very light eater so my husband and I split the pulled pork sandwich, with an additional side of coleslaw and beans. The sandwich was made with homemade bread and included both coleslaw and pickles. There was a choice of three different types of barbecue sauces. The pork was very tender and tasty with or without the BBQ sauces. The coleslaw was interesting with poppy seeds, and raisins in the dressing. The beans were served hot and also had originality with a variety of beans and nice sauce. There is also a dessert case inside the restaurant. We enjoyed the experience.


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