Santa Barbara > Restaurants > McMasters Steak and Hoagie
Ca Dario

McMasters Steak and Hoagie
No longer in business
Opened: 2007-09 Closed: 2012-09

910 Embarcadero Del Norte, Isla Vista
Phone: (805) 685-7010

Reviews by the General Public

Awesome!!!!, 11/25/2012
Reviewer: Alli from Santa Barbara, CA
I'm so sad this place closed there was no warning!! I moved here from Philly and couldn't find a good hoagie, ESP because they call them sandwiches here. I found McMasters and was in heaven!! Felt like home and the owners were so nice and really went out of their way to make you happy. I hope they are okay and know that nobody made a better hoagie than them in town!

Best food in town and even better service!, 7/7/2011
Reviewer: Diana from Santa Barbara, CA
McMaster is the nicest guy ever. He goes out of his way to make sure each customer has the best experience and makes me feel special inside. They even will refill your fountain drink for you... it's self serve! I love their cheesesteaks and pastrami. You can't go wrong with anything on the menu. Feelin' crazy? Make it a combo for only $9.00!! YUM. Fries are fresh. Meat is fresh. Grease never hurt anybody. McMaster, you make my day every other day when I go. Thank you.

Skip the burrito joint and come here :), 3/4/2011
Reviewer: Ms.Lieu from Santa Barbara, CA
The food is so good that I've started to eat here every week. The service is also very friendly. It's surprising that there's not a line out the door. When I'm *trying* to eat healthier I order the homemade soup instead of fries as a side. The barley soup is my favorite. The "Philly Chilli" is also very good. It's a nice touch that the soups and chilli come with bread and butter. There's free refills on soda and the soda machine is properly calibrated.

Just when I thought it couldn't get better..., 12/2/2010
Reviewer: John from Goodland
I was introduced to the deep-fried cheesesteak. Wow, this was a game changer. It was so good that I went back the next day and ordered four more cut up into quarters and handed them out to my friends. Everyone was impressed. Also ordered a cup of the barley soup and it was one of the best homemade soups that I have ever had. I believe this is a free substitution for french fries and as good as those hand-cut fries are, the soup is fantastic. And, as always, George is the man when it comes to customer service.

Great service, great food, but a bit pricey. , 9/12/2010
Reviewer: Brian from Isla Vista, CA
I've been here a bunch of times in the past 4 years that I've been here. The service is excellent, especially if the main owner guy is there himself. He'll let you sample their excellent soups of the day, which are fresh. As for the sandwiches all I've ever really gotten there is the PC, but they are pretty good. However, I do admit that the place is a bit pricey, and as good as the sandwiches are, they are almost not worth 8-9 dollars for one. The reason I hardly go here anymore is for none other than the price.

Great food,great service, 6/8/2010
Reviewer: Aaron Gosnell from Santa Barbara, CA
Hey Great food,Great service.

Classic Philly, 4/27/2010
Reviewer: Tim from Santa Barbara, CA
This place rules. It's become my favorite place to eat in SB. I'm from the Philly area, and the reviewer Mike doesn't know what he's talking about. There's no such thing as one classic Philly cheesesteak style. You go to Philly, and you'll get a 100 different answers as to how a cheesesteak should be made. Food snobs make a big deal about authenticty. It doesn't matter! If something tastes good, it tastes good. McMaster's is as good as any cheesesteak I ever had in Philly. This is the best place to get a hearty sandwich in town. Period.

Love it!, 4/25/2010
Reviewer: Alyssa from Santa Barbara, CA
I absolutely love steak and hoagie. I am a vegetarian and it is my favorite place to go. Their sandwiches are so yummy and you cannot beat the service period. McMasters and his family runs the place and they are all so wonderful. As a regular they already have my name and order down. The fresh cut pot is delicious too. The hoagie fries and a drink deal is a great value.

AMAZING, 4/14/2010
Reviewer: Carl from Santa Barbara, CA
I always walked by it on my way to class, but I never bothered to go in. However, I made the best decision ever and I decided to try it out! Best sandwich ever. I don't care if it's authentic or not, but if you choose food that tastes good, I highly suggest going there. Another plus? Friendly service. Such a nice change in IV. They seem like they really enjoy their job and their customers!

Yum., 4/13/2010
Reviewer: Nicole from Santa Barbara, CA
I am not a meat eater and I love this place. Everything is done right- crispy and tender meat, tasty onions, peppers and mushrooms, and a nice buttery roll with perfect marinara to top or to dip. The fresh fries still have some potato skin. Yum. It's actually worth driving from downtown SB to the chaos of IV for the food. The owner and his family are friendly and down to earth. I'm surprised there's not a line out the door.

Love this place, 2/3/2010
Reviewer: John from Goleta
Ate there twice this week and might go back tomorrow. Although I normally order whatever is in the Restaurant's name, I was convinced to get a burger and it is the best in Santa Barbara county. The fact that I also had a half pound of pastrami on top of the burger probably helped. I highly recommend this place to everyone. Drive into IV and enjoy some of the best fast cheap food around. Enjoy.

BEST food around!, 1/7/2010
Reviewer: Kathy Parks from Santa Barbara, CA
Ok - I have been going there for some time now, but finally decided to give this place the review it deserves! I crave this place at least 3 times per week its THAT good. The service is excellent - you cant beat it here in IV. The 9.00 COMBO is the best bang for your buck...ANY sandwich, fries and a drink (free refills too!) You gotta try the CheeseSteak, (with or without sauce) plus MAYO - its AMAZING!

Phillys are not Philly at all, 12/15/2009
Reviewer: Mike from Santa Barbara, CA
I'm a UCSB student, and having a class in Embar Hall i was stoked to find out that a place was serving philly cheese steaks. All i have to say is, these are not philly steaks what-so-ever. If anybody wants to try an authentic cheese steak in SO. Cal, you need to try Phillys Best. About as orignial as you can get. Some tips . . . .slice the meat. the steak needs to be thinly sliced. . .find a philly style roll. classic french. . .and marinara sauce?? wtf. The guy looked at me like i was crazy when i didnt want any. He says, "wont that be dry for you?" . . .obv. showing me he doesnt know what a classic philly is. one love

2nd to none!, 8/4/2009
Reviewer: Roger from goleta, CA
McMaster's is amazing! The cheese steak is probably the best I've had in california. The owner knows all about great service too and he offers to get you refills and condiments while you eat (Not bad for an "order-up" style place). He even gave out free samples of the soup of the day a few times. I'd eat here every day if I could, but I'd like to make it past 40. Keep it up!

Great cheesesteaks & great service, 7/29/2009
Reviewer: Leona from Santa Barbara, CA
The owner there is SUPER friendly and always ensures the customer's satisfaction. I was shocked to see this because not that many owners take pride in running their restaurants and valuing customers. I definitely would recommend this place to anyone who is looking for fresh and delicious food. For this place being the only steak & hoagie restaurant, I give it a thumbs up :)

one of the best in IV, 7/21/2009
Reviewer: John from Good Land
not only is the food fantastic, but George is a rock-star when it comes to customer service. I talk to him a minimum of three times with every trip because he continually checks up on all his customers to make sure they are happy. Eaten there 25+ times in the last year and have yet to not have a fantastic sandwich. A rating of five on service is not nearly high enough.

Best service in town!, 6/1/2009
Reviewer: Alycia from Santa Barbara, CA
What truly makes this place is the fantastic customer service! The owner is very attentive and personally refills your drinks, brings condiments, and even comes to your table to wrap up your leftovers for you! The food is really good, definitely one of the best cheese steak sandwiches Iíve ever had. You can get a full meal (sandwich, fries, and a soda) for less than $10 and itíll definitely fill you up. My coworkers and I walk over from UCSB and itís a great place for the lunch hour Ė quick, easy, excellent food, and phenomenal service!

McMaster = master of cheese steak, 4/25/2009
Reviewer: Art from Santa Barbara, CA
awesome food and service.. nuff said

Burgers and Service are Great...Cheesesteak Ok, 3/26/2009
Reviewer: Glenn from Buellton
I guess its because I have never had a cheesesteak before but it seemed extremely greasy to me. I much more enjoyed the burger which rivals In N Out, The Habit, Kahuna. Fries are really good too. The star of this place is the owner though who goes out of his way to make every customer feel great. Try the free sweet Cherry Peppers in there. Free Drink refills. An enormous amount of seating in and out.

great stuff, friendly and filling, 3/11/2009
Reviewer: Chase from Santa Barbara, CA
this place is great, just finished eating here like 10 min ago, i spread my money around IV, and the owner of this joint is very cool, order the PMC combo for 8 bucks and enjoy, i am a big eater and this place is sure to fill you up, the fries are like bigger versions and tastier one the IN-n-OUT, plus a huge portion. it reminds me of a clean Great Western steak n hogie place in Santa Monica which has been in business when my parents were kids, so i hope this place last

Best Burger hands DOWN, 3/6/2009
Reviewer: Elizabeth from Goleta, CA
I've had burgers at all the burger joynts in town...but I hadn't REALLY had a burger til I had one at McMaster's. By far, the absolute BEST burger in all the Santa Barbara area. The fries are great too, but only if you like REAL food. George, the owner, is helpful, answers questions and is happy to have a conversation with his clientele providing he's got the time. Even still, he personally checks to make sure everything is right. I'll be back, OFTEN.

Awesome, 2/2/2009
Reviewer: Curtis from UCSB
Best steak i've had, and i've been to philly. The bread is killer and the fries are done right. $9 for a whole meal is the best deal you can get

retract my earlier review - it's all about the burgers, 1/2/2009
Reviewer: mark from beverly hills, ca
i was not primed on going back here until a friend suggested i try the burgers. they were amazing! best burgers in iv...and probably goleta. the manager is one of the nicest owners in iv. he comes out and personally refills your drinks, bring you condiments, asks how your meal was.

Delicous Food + Great Service makes a come back!, 7/24/2008
Reviewer: Barbara from Santa Barbara, Ca
The first thing I noticed was how inviting George was. He recommended things to eat, and was completely attentive without being smarmy. It is clear that he CARES about winning your business, and running his. The philly cheesesteak was delicious! The meat was high quality, all the veggies cooked to perfection, cheese melted just so, and the roll was completely fresh and yummy. The fries were excellent simplicity, real food not frozen BS! DELICIOUS! You should patronize this place, George will treat you right! If you use a credit card, he'll even call you by name too! What a guy!!

Can't get a better cheese steak!, 5/13/2008
Reviewer: dustin from santa barbara, ca
Best cheesesteak i've ever had and a damn good hogie too. I have family in Philly and used to go back every summer, so I know my steaks. No BS cheese-whiz here (unfortunately the norm in a lot of Philly these days), all rib-eye, and an incredible italian roll (ask him and he'll tell you where he gets them in G-town). The owner is super cool too and knows how to run a small business. The accent doesn't hurt either!

Very Good Place to Eat, 3/25/2008
Reviewer: William from Santa Barbara, CA
Ate here about a week ago. March 2008. Had the cheesesteak and it was a very good one at that. Being from PA, myself, I am very picky when it comes to hoagies or cheesesteaks. The food was good, the service was great. Thankfully, I was there during UCSB's spring break, otherwise the parking might be an issue. I would recommend this place to anyone!

Fourth Visit And Two Cheesesteaks In one Evening!, 3/4/2008
Reviewer: Robert from Isla Vista, CA
Having only one thing to say: if there ever comes a time when I end up on my death bed with one last dying request and wish - I would have a nurse wheelchair me into McMasters for the last and final greatest philly cheesesteak sandwich known to man. Stopped by last night again around 10:30PM and had two pepper steak hoagies back to back with outstanding fries and free refills. Someone told me once that pastry chefs make a dessert called "Sex on the Beach"....Im starting to ask the ultimate question as to whether McMasters Cheesesteak truly is the Sex on the Beach?

New Favorite place to eat, 2/27/2008
Reviewer: steph from I.V., CA
The food was great (best fries in I.V.) and the sandwich was true to Philly. My roommate and I thought the food was well worth the money. Also my roommate is a vegetarian, so there is a veggie option.

grossest food in isla vista, 2/16/2008
Reviewer: mark from beverly hills, ca
I got a hoagie here late night with the drunk munchies and it was so gross i couldn't finish it...the french fries were bland and the ranch sauce they gave me on the side was just cold salad dressing.

A real Philly Cheese steak from a real Philly guy, 2/2/2008
Reviewer: George from Carpinteria, CA
My wife is from Philly and whenever we go back east we have to hit Pat's or some other cheese steak place. McMaster's is the real deal. I talked with the owner and he is from Philadelphia, Manayunk to be specific. Their cheese steaks are as good as I've had. I agree with the guy from New Jersey, it's all about the bread. I had the $8 special with fries and a drink with free refills, a good deal. The place is incredibly clean and the owner and staff are extremely friendly and helpful.

Killer food, 12/6/2007
Reviewer: John from IV
This is a fantastic place to eat. I ordered a Philly cheese steak with mushrooms, onions, peppers and had them top it off with a scramble egg and it was killer. The cost was $7.50 and adding fries and a soda brought the total to $8.00. A dollar tip and I was out the door into the outdoor seating area for nine dollars even. The cheese steak was great and the fries were outstanding. This is my new favorite place to eat in IV. The only thing they are missing is a liquor license.

Reviewer: Bob from Santa Barbara

great , 10/16/2007
Reviewer: Justin from IV, Ca
Hey, Great new place, I live real close to it, not only is it refreshing to have a new decent spot in IV, but the food is great

Great!, 9/27/2007
Reviewer: Peter from Isla Vista
McMasters has great food. I got the Pizza Cheesesteak and it was great. Price was decent($7.50), but it was well worth it. It has a great big outdoor area which is a nice place to eat. They're fries are very good also. I'm definately going there a lot.

About time., 9/19/2007
Reviewer: Phil from Santa Barbara
Ok, some background. I moved out here from New Jersey in 2003. I searched for a place to get a sandwich that could give me a sense of home. Until now, it was a futile quest (the italian grocery is ok still not great). The bread is the key, and this place nailed it. The only other place you can get cheesesteaks like this is Philadelphia and southern Jersey. The fries are also quite good. The menu is limited, but that's because they're specializing in one thing. I can't say enough good things about this place.

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