Santa Barbara > Restaurants > Marmalade Cafe
Due Lune Cucina

Marmalade Cafe
No longer in business
Opened: 2007-12 Closed: 2015-12

3825 State St, Santa Barbara
Phone: (805) 682-5246

  • Category: American
  • Hours: Mon-Thu 11am-10pm, Fri 11am-11pm, Sat 8am-11pm, Sun 8am-10pm
  • Price: $10 - $20
  • Serving: Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner
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Reviews by the General Public

Great Food & Service, 9/21/2013
Reviewer: Daisy from Chino, CA
The food at Marmalade Cafe was very good. The service also was very good. We are tavelers passing through and read some of the reviews & decided to try it despite the bad reviews. I am glad we did. is in the Mall parking lot between Sears & Starbucks. Kevin the Bartender was very personable and made our lunch experience very enjoyable. We will have lunch here next time we are in town

Best Place for Banquets in SB, 6/19/2013
Reviewer: Diana Thomas from Santa Barbara, CA
We used the Banquet Room for 2 family events: UCSB Graduation, followed the next morning with Father's Day family reunion. In both events, the food was EXCELLENT, the service was EXCELLENT, and the room was perfect for our needs. They let us decorate the room for each event to make it personalized. AND...equally important, the managers of the restaurant were so easy and pleasant to work with---even when we had endless questions and requests leading up to the events. I highly recommend Marmalade Cafe Banquet Facility for any group event. I also recommend the restaurant in general for excellent breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Recommend as a solid choice for casual dining, 5/5/2013
Reviewer: Steve Nelson from Walnut Creek, CA
Walnut Creek reunion for party of 15 at dinner on 5/4/13. Table was ready and waiting at reservation time, and our waitress was quite good. Drinks were well made, the menu had a nice variety, and the food was pretty good. Kind of reminded me of an upscale Mimi's Cafe. Prices were reasonable. Very pleasant evening and didn't feel rushed or ignored. Would recommend and repeat if ever staying in Santa Barbara again.

Very good steak, 4/16/2013
Reviewer: Michael from Santa Barbara, CA
We had a party of 6 and two people didn't like their food. The management offered to replace with something else. Steaks, salads and seafood were perfect. Don't recommend the Pasta.

Worst service ever!, 1/10/2013
Reviewer: Jackie from Santa Barbara, CA
First and last time here for dinner!! Service was awlful - waited forever to get someone to take drink orders and then waited forever for them to be served! Also waited at least 30 minutes for our dinner to be served after ordering. There were four of us and one party ordered an entree and was not told it was not available until our dinners were served. Needless to say, she had to watch us eat while she waited for her dinner . Manager did come by and apologize and at first was compting 1/2 of her dinner saying he was not informed by kitchen that the entree was not available. He ended up compting her whole dinner after telling him what awlful service we had. I might add that the resturant was not busy at all except for a private party in back - guess they cater to the back!! Food was only fair. I had made reservations at 9:00 AM for dinner in a booth and was given the last booth by the restrooms. Light was so poor we had to use a flash light to read the menu.

three strikes, 12/31/2012
Reviewer: Lex from Santa Barbara, CA
tried breakfast at Marmalade three times ....great potential,spacious, pleasant atmposphere.......but i've given up on it, food was good but service lacking.... major gripes: 6 small tables occupied with two servers present... had to chase down a server to get a refill on coffee.... All three times asked the server to run the toast thru the toaster twice as it was not done..and even then needed further toasting..... butter rock hard....server said there's nothing we could do about it...... sorry i had to give up on this place as it is nearby.....its too pricey for bad service

Steak , 11/11/2012
Reviewer: Mike F. from Santa Barbara, CA
Best Steak I have had in years. The sauce was perfect and cooked to perfection. The two side dishes were also very good. I don't give a '5' for the food very often. One complaint, the water was terrible, it tasted of chlorine.

Decent food; perfect inexpensive business lunch, 6/6/2012
Reviewer: John from Santa Barbara, CA
I work nearby and always enjoy bringing associates here for lunch. Prices are reasonable for this situation. Portions are large; for example, entree half-salads are plenty for a meal. Love the beet salad! Soups are outstanding, particularly the mushroom and pea. Service can be loose sometimes, but the men and women are friendly and accommodating. My wife enjoys the food and she eats out for a living (wine marketing). And she has a low opinion of most of the local high-end restaurants that have much higher price points. My one complaint is the carpet: it is way past time to replace it.

My last and final trip., 5/18/2012
Reviewer: chuck from Santa Barbara, CA
I have to agree with most of the negative postings. Pancakes? Light and fluffy is not in their vocabulary...thick and doughy is. Very slow service, even tho nearly empty. Food, at best is mediocre, prices higher then they should be. The former occupant, "Red Robin" was more family friendly, good quality and decent prices. Dressing the servers in long black outfits does not impress me. Not a Santa Barbara friendly venue...more like LA.

Horrible Service. Bad atmosphere. Walked out., 4/22/2012
Reviewer: Sean from Santa Barbara, CA
This was our 3rd time giving this place a try. Could we really strike out a 3rd time in a row? You be the judge. We waited at the door to be acknowledged for what seemed forever as servers and what looked like a manager passed us by several times, finally we were sat, not in a booth as requested but at a two top with very uncomfortable metal chairs. As we open our menus the table next to us shouted at the waitress, she ignored them, so I called for her,she snapped I know what that want I am getting them menus, apparently the had been told by the bartender to seat themselves and a waitress would be by which hadn't happened. As I realized I was in the middle of a third strike and was about to over pay for subpar food at above average prices and to was already receiving horrible service, we got up walked out and drove to Montecito and had an awesome lunch at Cava. Here's my advice to the owners of Marmalade, Fix your service!!! And have you food quality match your price points! I want a good place to eat next to Hope Ranch not far from the house, but right now you are not it. What a waste of restaurant space.

I want to like this place!, 12/19/2011
Reviewer: Scott Schwartz from Santa Barbara, CA
I was very excited to see Marmalade come to Santa Barbara. And I knew it would take a while for them to find their "legs" as a new restaurant in town. It's now been a few years and the Santa Barbara location still doesn't rate with the other Marmalade restaurants. It's a shame, and a bit surprising that the food quality is simply average. Meaning that I can't find or know anyone who has a "must have" on their menu. But what is shocking is the plating. A short order cook knows to make the food look good on the plate - this news hasn't reached Santa Barbara Marmalade. Basic white semi-oval plates with whatever the item you ordered thrown on top of it.. disappointing for sure. Though flat out bewildering is that the kids menu plates are heated/hot ???? Adding a laughable plastic (!?) container of apple sauce sitting atop the heated plate with the three previously frozen pieces of chicken scattered beside. Bottom line - try other Marmalade locations - Malibu is a nice choice. The Santa Barbara location isn't even worth the coupon..

Best kept secret in town!!!, 12/13/2011
Reviewer: Patrise Mercurio from Santa Barbara, CA
I'm somewhat confused regarding a review I read about Marmalade Cafe, as It was given but 3.5 stars? I have so enjoyed my frequent visits to Marmalade Cafe. The portions are far more than adequate and I cannot recall when I did not leave with a people/cat bag', (as we do not have any doggies atm, unfortunately). The food is very well prepared and excellent for the $$. The burgers are THE most awesome thing I've ever attempted to eat given my itty-bitty mouth. There are items on the menu that they do with excellence, especially their Sunday brunch & breakfasts, although their 'happy hour' has 1/2 price appetizers that are great. I find their entire menu quite diverse which makes this a great place to go when you aren't quite sure what you or your companion is in the 'mood' for. The only item I had difficulty with, was a 'happy hour' offering of Ahi tuna which is ordinarily my favorite. The waiter (mentioned below), nearly refused to serve it with wasabi vs. HOT chili sauce, which is the way it was 'originally offered'. Also, twice (out of 20+ times, it was mushy due to an over-ripe Avocado. This I passed off as a difference of opinion regarding what constitutes 'ripe'?? so given the parameters and my many visits, I can forgive the occassional faux pas. Owning/operating a biz in NOT an easy prospect and despite the occassional 'entitled waiter', I feel they do an extraordinary job. So, Regarding service, I had only one occassion above when it was also a bit 'rushed' and found that it was due to a 'shift change', as well as the mans' attitude; I've noticed that he is no longer present thanks to management. Having owned 3 local businesses myself, I was blessed by superb employees, but one cannot always tell until the damage is done. Please, should you have had ANY issues with Marmalade Cafe,(cannot imagine why), you owe it to yourself to give it another try!!! I find it delightful!!!

Third time , 12/11/2011
Reviewer: Mike F. from Santa Barbara, CA
First Time OK, second pretty good, third WOW very good food. Everyone agreed this place has gotten better and better. I loved the salmon and everything that went with.

Happy Hour displeasure, 10/28/2011
Reviewer: Manuel from Santa Barbara, CA
I have given the Marmalade happy hour four attempts and I've been very disappointed each time with the lack of attention I receive from the bartenders. I've sat down at the bar and waited over fifteen minutes before I received any eye contact or acknowledgement from the bartender. I enjoy the food and drinks ( once I finally receive them) but its not worth the frustration.

OK food...but terrible service, 10/5/2011
Reviewer: Malinda from Santa Barbara, CA
From the moment we arrived, the service was terrible. It took 15 minutes for a greet. Server finally took order and after 20 minutes returned saying she had lost our ticket and had to re-take the order. When it was delivered another 20 minutes later, everything came at once. Server apologized. No dressing on salad...when requested balsamic vinegarette, got straight vinegar...making the salad inedible. Had to ask twice for our beverage. Eating out is more than about the's about having a nice experience. We didn't.

Not worth a visit!, 6/28/2011
Reviewer: Rhonda from Santa Barbara, CA
I have been to Marmalade a handful of times. Each time, I am disappointed with the food, it's very boring and nothing fresh. I live in the neighborhood so keep hoping it will get better as it is convenient. Especially now with Ruth Chris closed. Then, the other night, my husband and I walked down and wanted to eat outside. We waited five minutes to be acknowledged, only to have a handful of waiters and waitresses just walk by, never once greeting us, including what appeared to be the manager. When a hostess finally approached us, we asked to be seated outside. When the hostess tried to sit us at a table that was right next to the front door and frankly, was dirty, we asked for a table away from the door. She let out a huge exasperated sigh and just looked at us. That was it for me - I turned around, went to Pizza Mizza where we were happily sat at an outside table and had terrific service. Happy to visit the Marmalade at Farmer's Market, but they missed the boat here in Santa Barbara. Won't be back!

Average at best., 6/23/2011
Reviewer: Tom from Santa Barbara, CA
Had the Ahi and it wasn't very good, especially for the price. Definitely wouldn't go there for the Ahi. All other food in the party was average at best. Poor service tonight. We were sitting around with empty glasses. Waiter didn't even ask us if we wanted coffee or dessert.

I Will Most Certainly Return!!!, 4/11/2011
Reviewer: Kaitlyn from Santa Barbara, CA
This was my first time dining at Marmalade and after reading the mixed reviews I was a bit nervous, however I can honestly say that this restaurant is one of the best I have been to in a while. The food was absolutely delicious, I had the blackened chicken pesto pasta, and the salad that my mother ordered was fresh and very pretty to look at. Our server was sweet and attentive, and although it was clear that she was busy, made sure we had refills before we even noticed our drinks were running low, and was considerate enough to ask if we wanted bread (which we didn't) rather than just assuming we did. The atmosphere was cozy, and I can see why people keep going back! My new favorite spot!

Horrible service and not so great food, 4/6/2011
Reviewer: Leila from Santa Barbara, CA
Came here for lunch and will NEVER go back. I had the french onion soup and half of a BLT. I normally love french onion soup but the soup I was served here tasted like salty sewer water. It was horrible. Even the BLT was lacking and it's a simple sandwich. My boyfriend also disliked his meal and stated that he wouldn't come back. However, the artichoke dip we had for an appetizer was good. BUT the main thing that was so off putting was the waitress. She was rude, fake, and didn't meet our needs. Not once did we recieve water refills nor were we asked if we needed anything. My boyfriend asked for parmesan after we waved her down from across the room, and when she brought it, she literally threw it on the table as she walked by and didn't say a word to us. It was extremely rude. When she brought the bill, she had left us a fake "thank you" note with a smiley face. ?????? We decided to leave a one dollar tip as we don't reward horrible/nonexistent service and we wanted to let her know that. She picked up the bill and looked at the tip we left her while we were still sitting there (a foot away from her) and then proceeded to complain loudly about the amount left for her. Marmalade, if you're reading this, please fire your waitress. She's repelling your customers.

Awful Service and Okay Food, 2/20/2011
Reviewer: Gina La Monica from Santa Barbara, CA
I have tried other Marmalades and the service has been good. This Marmalade I have tried a couple times and each time I get disappointed. The servers are inexperienced, there was no hostess to seat me today, they nickel and dime you with everything, you have to ask the server for everything, etc. The food is overpriced and is okay. Fresco is much better quality food for the price and great people working there. I will not go back.

Very Happy, 2/2/2011
Reviewer: Alex from Santa Barbara, CA
Awesome Happy Hour! Way bigger portions and better quality food than other Happy Hours. Fun staff and good drinks. I will definitely be back!

Enjoyable Christmas Eve Dinner, 12/25/2010
Reviewer: Robert L. from Santa Barbara, CA
My wife and I came here for Christmas Eve dinner and really enjoyed ourselves. It was pretty busy when we arrived but we were promptly seated and greeted. Our waitress, Adrian, was wonderful; very friendly and personable. Even though I could tell she was busy, she still made time for us, always had a smile on her face, and genuinely seemed like she wanted to ensure that our evening was going well. The food was great. I've had some hit and misses here, but last night I tried the Seabass special and my wife had the Prime Rib dinner. The sauce on the Seabass was extraordinary and my wife's Prime Rib was cooked just right. I would heartily recommend both dishes. Kudos to the chef! I've read some bad reviews about this place but I would definitely advise giving it another chance, because I've had some great dining experiences here. Thank you for providing a really lovely Christmas Eve dinner for my wife and I!

decent food, terrible service, 12/23/2010
Reviewer: Rachel from Santa Barbara, CA
Service was awful. The waitress seemed annoyed that we were there. Had to ask another server for bread because she was missing and had to ask for my iced tea to be refilled even though she clearly saw it was empty. Food was decent; I had the French Onion soup and the shrimp scampi. It wasn't anything amazing and I did feel kind of ripped off that I just paid $14 for a scampi that was comparable to something I could get at Costco in the freezer section. I would probably go back, but try something different on the menu.

enjoyed our breakfast, 11/23/2010
Reviewer: Frank Giraldo from Santa Barbara, CA
My wife and I often come here for breakfast on my day off! Marmalades serves some good coffee! and their breakfast portions are generous. The food has been delicious and the service has been superb! Hats off to Kristin, she really has a neat attitude and makes our experience delightful. Keep up the good work!

Salty and stodgy and not from round here..., 9/30/2010
Reviewer: Sophia from Santa Barbara
Went here recently for the first time in a year or so; I didn't have a great recollection of it the first time round but thought I would give it another try. First of all, the food was really over-salted and artificial. It tasted like food from the freezer section of the grocery store, nothing was really fresh except for the romaine lettuce and unripe tomatoes. In California, with all that great food growing so close to us, we can do better! Second, despite being over-seasoned, food was bland and stodgy. There were a lot of older people here having lunch, and my guess is this is what you might have been served at Marie Calendars 20 years ago: it scores for nostalgia, if nothing else. Lastly, service I am very tolerant of but the server took our plates before we were finished (half a plate of food on each dish). Still, food was so boring neither of us complained.

Shrimp nuggets, 9/11/2010
Reviewer: mike from Santa Barbara, CA
Salty tough shrimp. I eat out often and I have never had scampi this bad. I should have sent it back but didn't because everyone else seemed to like the place. The service was good and I think you should give a place more than one try.

Lobster Fest not so festive, 8/14/2010
Reviewer: Valerie McDonald from Santa Barbara, CA
After my husband got up to get someone to finally help us, I ordered surf and turf ( I had to say it twice) and got the seafood linguine - When it arrived I questioned it and she said my order was right! My husband got the 1.5 maine lobster which was not very much lobster- No water or bread was served and we never saw the same waitress twice. Too bad we paid cash so I am not sure which dinner she charged me for. Over priced, food and service not very good. Will not return.

Rude service, alright food, 4/28/2010
Reviewer: Blaire from Santa Barbara, CA
For how expensive it is, I did not receive proper service. I ate here for breakfast and had an unpleasant experience. I was not greeted upon entering (in fact a manager walked right past me ignoring me), the waitresses were unprofessional and rude, they talked about who had what table in front of their guests and for just 1 example of rudeness I asked if they could open the umbrella and the waitress responded "that won't do anything." She didn't offer to help us get what we want, i.e. move to the next table over that the umbrella did provide shade for. In fact I had to suggest that to her! There was no customer service, we had to ask to refill waters and then they only refilled 1 and not all 3 guests, so we had to ask again to refill water. These are just a few examples of my terrible experience. I ate the Portable Benedict and it was just alright. I highly doubt I will go here again, even to try something new.

Reviewer: MARION WILSON from Santa Barbara, CA
Reviewer: Mike from Santa Barbara, CA
After reading the reviews and doing our best to avoid this place we ended up there today for better or worse. We were actually, pleasantly surprised by how good the food was and how excellent the service was. The prices were reasonable and the portions were huge. The place was busy but the food and service didn't suffer because of it. Thanks!

Overpriced and gloppy, but the service is bad!, 2/3/2010
Reviewer: Shandy from Santa Barbara, CA
Wow was that a mistake. The ravioli was only sort of thawed out and the butter sauce was more water than butter. The server(s) were nice, but largely absent. I won't be running back.

Good Food and Service, 8/24/2009
Reviewer: Glenn from Buellton
Not sure about the other comments but I enjoyed it. You pay for the atmosphere/decor which is really nice and for the quality of the food which was really tasty to me. I recommend the Thai pasta and Chicken curry salad. The cococut shrimp fell short of an Opal or Palace Grill for me though but was still pretty tasty. Friendly wait staff, nice atmosphere for a date or just to chill inside or out, not cramped at all.

Dessert Please!, 8/10/2009
Reviewer: cass from Santa Barbara, CA
Went here on a friday evening for dessert and coffee. I had the strawberry shortcake.. YUMO! Homemade bisquit layered w/ strawberries and whip cream , then repeat! My husband had the brownie sundae layered with icecream and whip cream ... suggest sharing next time. Where else in sb for dessert other than mcconnels or fosters??

How can this be related to the original?, 7/7/2009
Reviewer: Mindy from Santa Barbara, CA
We were excited to try the restarant when it opened and some friends gave us an extremely generous gift card that we are STILL using even afer five trips there. In all honesty, the only reason we keep going back is to use the balance left on our gift card. Like so many other places in SB, it started off pretty decently, but by the second time we visisted, it had a dirty smell and the food was just sort of "warmed over" tasting. We have been for lunch and breakfast and had all sorts of different items from the menu. Each time, it's mediocre at BEST. The service is friendly and okay but several times we never got a return visit to our table between the meal being served and us requesting the check. I've never eaten in a Denny's, but I'd imagine it might be on par with that type of breakfast. Though perhaps Denny's can keep eggs warm better; twice we had to send back room temp eggs and a cold (literally) sausage. The original in SM is excellent, as is the Westlake Village location. What gives, SB?

Great Service, Mediocre Food, 7/5/2009
Reviewer: Ashley from Santa Barbara, CA
This was my first visit. I usually go to Ruth Chris, so thought I would try something new. Service was friendly & efficient. Spinach artichoke dip was good. Pasta with shrimp was tasteless; shrimp were either old or frozen variety. I got sick about 1 hour after lunch. Marmalade is very fortunate to have such friendly staff, but needs to step it up with the food quality. I'm going back to Ruth Chris.

Great Service, 12/15/2008
Reviewer: Aimee from Santa Barbara, CA
The inside of the restaurant was very nice. I love the atmosphere and decoration, but the price of the food was the main downfall. I had a glass of apple juice which was apparently "all organic" that cost $7, and my mom's cup of coffee was $5 because it was organic as well. The food was good but not wonderful. It ended up being over $50, and I felt a little ripped off paying a high price at a cafe for breakfast for three people to have scrambled eggs. The waitress was really great. For some reason the kitchen didn't make my bacon, and put the wrong bread on the plate. Once I mentioned it to her she immediately brought in the bread ordered and let me have the other bread complimentary. I don't really care if my food is organic or not, and I don't want to pay so much for it to be organic, so I guess this is not really the place for me.

Overpriced and Mediocre, 10/16/2008
Reviewer: Lisa Keller from Santa Barbara, CA
I've had breakfast twice, lunch twice, and happy hour once at Marmalade and think I am convinced that I don't need to go back. The food is nothing special and tastes exactly like something from a chain restaurant. The service has always been good, but this just doesn't make up for uninspired cuisine.

this is not the same as the orig Marmalade in Santa Monica , 10/10/2008
Reviewer: marla from Santa Barbara, CA
They just can't get it together here- some of the worst service every ( which can only mean the info from the top is not right) I have had raw chicken in my salad here a number of times - management is helpful and tries to fix but salmonella aside, they do not get it. It may be that the general public is too stupid to work effectively as waitstaff or it may be that upper management does not care or know how to train them. After all this time it should have been fixable. The Marmalade in Santa Monica that started it all is known for their great bread, sweet butter and incredible food with a French flair, creme brulee - this franchise type step up from Denny's is really disappointing and I really wanted to like it, I gave it many chances to be good. Thank God for Renauds if only they were bigger. Perhaps it is time for someone from the Malibu of Santa Monica store to come in and revamp. Someone with a sense of pride about the name. Plus Santa Monica would never serve table syrup rather than pure maple it is just one example of the step down they took to serve the masses.

It has not improved!, 9/22/2008
Reviewer: Molly from Santa Barbara, CA
Gave this restaurant a second chance and it was even worse than our first visit. We went for Saturday brunch on our second visit, the place was not busy but we had to wait some time before anyone even offered beverages. Our food was cold and the smoked salmon was definitely a huge mistake. Coffee/iced tea refills were not offered, we had to request seconds by which time we just decided to leave and will definitely not return!

Not impressed..., 9/3/2008
Reviewer: Justin from Santa Barbara, CA
Having eaten at Marmalade Cafe only once before, and not being impressed in the least, my girlfriend and I decided to give it a second try. This time we ordered the Early Show and were incredibly disappointed once again. To start, our waiter was very unenthusiastic about his work and it definitely showed through...The salad was ok, but once the main entree came out, my girlfriend actually laughed at the small quantity of food. Her $16 meal consisted of only 4 measly ravioli for the main dish. We were still holding out some hope for the dessert, because last time we had ordered the tiramisu, it was a very large portion, so we figured at least that would help to make up for the large amount of money spent on nearly nothing so far. But once the dessert came out we were once again disappointed. The tiramisu had magically shrunken to 1/3 the size of the one we had ordered last time. So the $16 Early Show that sounds like a good deal turned into just half size portions of everything and a waste of money. All in all, this trip was a complete bust and we will never be dining here again.

Hit and miss, 9/2/2008
Reviewer: Kristina from Santa Barbara, CA
I have been to Marmalade several times and each time had a very different experience. Both the food and service have been hit and miss. I can not decide if I hate it or like the place. Service has been slow on several occasions. And the food, although they have what to me sounds like amazing food choices, most of them have been a disappointment. Last time I had some very rubbery and overcooked scrambled eggs and really dry turkey sausage. But on another visit I loved the Italian omelet and potatoes. Good luck if you try here. I just wish they would step up the cooking a bit so that I could go here and know it would be good.

Ahi Madness and Amazing Team Work Service , 8/12/2008
Reviewer: Huyen from Santa Barbara, CA
First trip to the Marmalade, and we left impressed, full of smiles and appetite's beyond content. Our waiter, Spencer, was patient, funny, and went out of his way to make sure we were well taken care of. The hostess was also very nice - we orginally sat outside, but during sunset wanted to move indoors because it started getting a bit cooler. Even though they were busy we got a great booth seat tucked in a corner, away from the crowd (big booth fan). My friend ordered the Ahi wrap with a salad, and I got a cesar salad with an ahi filet and it was HUGE! I like it when the fish isn't seared with strange/heavy seasonings, and they made it just right..I added a bit of tabascco and was good to go! Creamy wild mushroom soup was deep and full of flavor, when I requested the remainder to go he topped off the entire container, and gave us coffee to go compliments of the restaurant. Little details like that make a big difference, and will bring customers back. I had also requested honey for my tea and they busboy came back and said very aplogetically that they were all out, but returned 5 mintues later, full of smiles, with honey in hand. We were way too full for dessert, but stayed and chatted it up because the atmosphere was so comfortable and relaxing. All around thumbs way up!

Good food, good service, 8/7/2008
Reviewer: DS from Goleta, CA
I went here for dinner with a friend on a Friday night a few weeks ago (July 18). The place was not busy at all and quiet, which was very enjoyable after a long day. The service was good, which surprised us after the reviews we read. The cocktails were tasty, but my friend's was a little too strong and they promptly fixed it for her when she asked. The food was also good. The price was reasonable for the food and atmosphere, about the same as other nicer Santa Barbara restaurants. My friend ordered the chicken fettuccine dish which she said was very good. I got a chicken dish which was also good. My only complaint was that they gave us the wrong check; it was switched with a nearby table. Once we told them, they gave us the right one. Overall it was an enjoyable meal.

overpriced breakfast, poor service, 8/3/2008
Reviewer: Paul from Santa Barbara, CA
We decided to use a Marmalade breakfast coupon we recently received. We had a late breakfast on a Friday, about 10:00 am. We figured it would be quick, and hopefully delicious. It took 40 minutes to receive our simple breakfast. It wasn't that busy, perhaps new cooks in the kitchen? The food was so-so, nothing special, and overpriced. Many other restaurants in town are about 50% less for equal or better food. During our long wait for food we didn't even receive coffee refills.

Won't go back, 7/31/2008
Reviewer: meredith from santa barbara ca
I heard good things about Marmalade and tried it last night for dinner. The combination of bad food, uncomfortable seating and mediocre service compels me to write. I'm not a picky eater, but my meal was inedible. I ordered the filet Mignon quesadillas, they sound fabulous- but were so greasy, too mushroomy, and the hard bits of filet made it really bad. My dinner partner did not enjoy her Caesar salad with fishy-tasting seared ahi on top. "Seared" is supposed to be raw inside (yummy), but the grade of fish was too low for this preparation method. When the food server (who called us 'ladies' multiple times each visit) asked how everything was and if she could pack up two full plates of food. I mentioned the quesadillas were very greasy. She said, "Sorry" as if she accidentally bumped my cart in the supermarket. I was hoping she would empathize and perhaps offer to relay my comment to the chef. I was not looking for a comped meal. I honestly thought she might care that neither of us enjoyed our food! "Hello, Ladies. Are you Ladies interested in ordering anything else today, Ladies?" No thanks.

over priced regular coffee, 7/19/2008
Reviewer: Chuck from santa barbara
Even Starbucks is half the price for "regular" coffee, so if you like to pay about #3.00 then this is the place for you.

ok food, fine service, 7/2/2008
Reviewer: Dana Alexander from Sanat Barbara
We went for breakfast and were unimpressed. The pancakes were very thick and dry. After being spoiled at the East Beach Grill, these just didn't cut it. And they were quite a bit more expensive. Service was fine, but I found it odd that they didn't bring any butter with the pancakes and the server seemed surprised that we would want some. Want to try lunch and dinner, but breakfast was just ok.

great food -Terrible, Terrible Service, 6/24/2008
Reviewer: Mike from Santa Barbara
Great food and a great menu with many items. The two times we have been there, the service was terrible. This last time the food server put my hot plate right down on my silverware and left it there. The waitress was disheveled with hair that was stringy and she kept on pushing it away from her face...incredible. It took almost twenty minutes to get our drinks (wine) and just as slow to receive our food order. Seems like there is virtually no management around that is paying attention to this sorry state of affairs. I do hope that they can get their act together.

One Great Day, 6/20/2008
Reviewer: Miranda from Santa Barbara, CA
I stopped in one day to this wonderful restaurant. My family and I had great food. There was this one waiter that was great. His name was Christopher. He had great knowledge of wine and when somthing went wrong he made it all better. The food was great but the service was better and quite entertaining. I had the clam chowder which was so creamy and delicious. I want to come back again and again mainly because of the service Christopher provided.

ehh, 6/18/2008
Reviewer: Kathrine from Santa Barbara, CA
Pretty good food, miserable service. I've been there 4 times, and 3 of the times something went wrong. The first time we went we never got our food despite the fact that I could see it sitting in the kitchen waiting to be picked up by the server for over 20 minutes. We ended up paying and leaving after having been at the restaurant for an hour (never got our entrees). The 2nd time they messed up the bill and there were several complications with paying. The 3rd time was fine (more or less), and the 4th time all of my chicken was a strange purpleish color, which the waitress blamed on the fact that they had probably dropped some beets in the chicken. But, their food is pretty good (filet mignon quesadilla - yum), so I'll probably go back...but I won't expect good service.

good food; terrible service, 6/13/2008
Reviewer: Phillip from Santa Barbara, CA
Four of us went to Cafe Marmelade for breakfast. The food was good, but the service was disappointing. Only three orders arrived at the table; the fourth order was lost and had to be placed again. Of the three orders that arrived, one was wrong-- I ordered an omelet with provolone cheese, mushrooms, and red onions, but received one with swiss cheese, ham, and spinach. We probably won't eat at Cafe Marmelade again.

Delicious and enjoyable!, 6/11/2008
Reviewer: Sheila from Santa Barbara, CA
I stopped by one afternoon for a light lunch and was so pleasantly surprised. I wanted to get a Quesadilla, but didn't want the meat, and don't like the squash they had in the vegetarian one. So they customized one for me, with artichokes, mushrooms and onions, changed the cheese to have it blend better, and served it with great guacamole and salsa, and I was in heaven!! It was absolutely delicious, and I so appreciated them customizing it for me. They were attentive with refilling my drink, and when I asked if they had a new copy of the local Independent, one server ran over to Starbucks to get me one to read. It was one of my better dining experiences in a long time - and the taste of that quesadilla will bring me back for another one!

What's Not to Love?, 5/31/2008
Reviewer: Aimee from Goleta
Wow, this place was tasty and fun! We sat on the patio on a sunny Saturday afternoon and it was quite nice. My friends and I ordered the spinach-artichoke dip (SO amazing) and we each ordered a different salad, all of which were wonderful (with the appetizer and free sourdough rolls, the half-size was plenty). I also had some seriously fantastic lemonade. Menu is extensive, reasonably priced (for SB, at least), and creative. Our server was sweet, funny, and attentive. Nope, couldn't ask for much more than that! I hope this place sticks around...

Surprisingly Good, 5/25/2008
Reviewer: Lynn from SB, CA
When a group of friends invited me to join them for a Saturday breakfast at Marmalade Cafe, I tried to convince them to reconsider and pick a locally owned place. I have to admit the food was quite good and the service was great. When my friend asked to speak with the manager to compliment him, he came over looking quite concerned. I think we made his day when we had compliments for him. We all need to stop and compliment folks a bit more when they are doing fine jobs and of course, let them know when they fall short...

Food ok, but the waiter was TERRIBLE!, 5/16/2008
Reviewer: Jessica from Santa Barbara, CA
My husband went there to try something new, and get away from the typical State Street places. When ordering, I asked the waiter if the risotto was any good. His exact response: "No, it's disgusting. Yeah, we tried some, and it just tastes wrong." I was shocked, and then said I would order a salad. He said AGAIN: "that's not very good." What are we supposed to eat if everything is bad?? Okay......I was under the impression that restaurants try and hire at least semi-decent waiters. Apparently, in this case I was wrong.

Need to be improved, 5/12/2008
Reviewer: Viet from santa barbara , CA
I was with my family on Sartuday evening may 10, the first time I was here for lunch, the food was ok, I want to come back for dinner but this time I was so disappointed, all the foods we order( we're 7 people) none of them taste good, my mom orders fillet mignon medium rare, she got rare, my husband orders a steak medium rare, he got well done, my daughter orders medium rare burger, she got rare, and the table was granite top, when you use butter knife to cut steak, the plate just dancing around because it is too slipery, the chair with iron cast in the back very uncomfortable when you seat and talk at dinner table, you just want to finish your dinner and go home because the chair. The chef needs to be trainning more about testing meat.

Poor sevice and mediocre food, 3/16/2008
Reviewer: VK from Santa Barbara, CA
Went to brunch at Marmalade. We were a large party; first, we were seated at a table adjacent to the kitchen. So close, in fact, that we could hear the rattling pans and chopping knives. We then moved to a better location, the management initially resisted our request to do so, however. Our waitress took too long to take our orders, serve coffee, and was generally disinterested. When my entree did arrive (an efficient and courteous bus-boy brought our entrees --- our original waitress had dissapeared), the pancakes were dry, the bacon was burnt, and, worst of all, my poached eggs were cold and the yolks were broken. The best part of the dining experience was the decor: beautifully rustic. Shame the food and service did not match up.

Food Ok - service needs work, 3/8/2008
Reviewer: Sharon from Santa Barbara, CA
We went to the Marmalade on Thursday night. The waiter took a long time to approach our table. Though my daughter's diet coke was brought back with speed, my glass of wine took more than 15 minutes. We had time to order, go to the bathroom and eat bread before it got there. Dinner was fine, not extraordinary, just good food, and big portions. Desert was slow in coming, and small. But the bill was a surprise - he charged us for crab cakes we didn't get. I think the prices they ask and the decor suggests a large chain like Morton's, or Red Lobster. But the service needs work. The table we sat at (in the back) was on an aisle so scrunched by oversized tables and chairs that the waiters couldn't pass by without hitting my back. Probably won't be back.

Reviewer: Susan from Santa Barbara
We stumbled upon this restaurant while out shopping. At lunchtime, it was jam-packed, and the wait staff seemed stressed. We had to ask twice for our drinks, which were delivered after our food was served. And when we ordered a pricey salad, we were surprised to discover it was basically a few pieces of meat upon lots and lots of lettuce. The place may be understaffed for the business it's getting. And it would do well to produce salads that have far more tasty ingredients.

good hearty food, nice atmosphere, 3/4/2008
Reviewer: Lisa from Thousand Oaks, CA
I liked Marmelade Cafe. I live in Thousand Oaks and have eaten at the one there many times, so thought I would try SB. The selection of food and quality were good. I had Black Bean Soup and Marmelade House Salad. My husband had the Lobster Ravioli, which was delicious. The desserts were outstanding. The Creme Brulee and Molten chocolate Cake were decadent. SB people must be picky. The waiter was attentive and friendly. Even the hostesses were great. Would definately go back.

Not bad but I miss Red Robins!, 2/24/2008
Reviewer: Eric from Montecito
I crave a delicious hamburger with all-you-can-eat steak fries but instead I get Marmalade. Its not terrible but it is overpriced and kind of pretentious. Shame on you LaCumbre management for evicting an upstanding member of our business community in exchange for "upscale" appearance with average food. I'd go in a pinch but it won't be an intentional destination.

We will go back, 2/22/2008
Reviewer: Deet from Santa Barbara, CA
After reading reviews that ranged form good to bad I decided we needed to check it out for ourselves. We settled on a Friday lunch. Drink orders were taken promptly and fresh hot bread was delivered with the drinks. I ordered fish and chips which were prepared quite nicely and served over piping hot French fries, steamed veggies were an nice addition; they were fresh and were cooked and seasoned to perfection. The tartar sauce was adequate but could stand some improvement or enhancement but, fresh lemon squeezed on the fish was fine. My companion chose the shrimp scampi with the pasta. Since my companion is a person of few words I can only assume the meal was good because the plate was cleaned. When asked if she would like to come back here? She said YES! Service was good and attentive but there appears to be excess staff members standing around idle. I will definitely go back and give it another chance for breakfast or dinner.

Great place fror a casual lunch or dinnner, 2/16/2008
Reviewer: Mr. Lee from Goleta
I dined here on a rainy day and it was wonderful. They have a great selection of food and drinks. On a cold day,their soup selection is ample. One thing that I can recommend to to chef is monitoring the the spinach dip. Something was severely burned, but the kitchen staff continued to cook the dip regardless;it tasted like burned toast. Otherwise,I would highly recommend this restaurant for a nice and easy meal. Nice wine, nice food, great service, enjoy yourself!

Nice Family Restaurant, good All Around, 2/15/2008
Reviewer: Krista and Tony from Goleta
We had heard a lot of things about Marmalade and decided to see the place for ourselves. My wife and I went for dinner on a weekday evening and found the restaurant to be about 90 percent full. Nonetheless we were seated immediately and greeted by our waitperson very promptly. Now normally I start out with my thoughts on the food but this time I'm going to start with the service because it was exemplary. Obviously I can't speak to others who have mentioned problems but the young man who took care of our table was spot-on perfect. He was friendly, knew the menu, answered questions was attentive, but not too attentive and generally great. I only wish I'd remembered his name so I could mention it here. I've had much worse service when the bill was three times as high. OK onto the food, I had the spicy blackened chicken over pasta w/pesto sauce. I liked this dish very much, it was recommended by our waitperson and I really enjoyed it. The portion was big enough to fill me up for diner and still leave a modest lunch for the next day. Now lets be clear, this is not haute-cuisine, its a family-style restaurant, chicken and pasta not escargot and truffles. My ratings on the food are based on comparison to its peers and not places like Bouchon or Downeys. OK enough ranting, Overall my wife and I were very happy with Marmalade and we will be happy to go back.

A Mediocre Marmalade, 2/10/2008
Reviewer: Carlos C from Santa Barbara, CA
The Chicken Piccata was well prepared and tasty. The serving size was enough to feed three. The wine list was over-priced for a coffee shop of this caliber. And a 2005 Pinot Noir appeared at the table as a 2006 vintage. The wait staff had obviously been extensively schooled - in cloying! Paying by credit card, the bill presented for signature was not itemized. Thus no way to know if they'd billed correctly. We've never before seen a restaurant bill that showed only the bottom line. It took several minutes for the server to return with an itemized bill. With nine locations in California this is obviously a restaurant that puts corporate strategies ahead of customer satisfaction. And how many times do we need to say "no thank you" to dessert?

Poor food, poor service, overpriced, 2/10/2008
Reviewer: Sandy from Santa Barbara
We took advantage of the kids going to a slumber party to go out to an early Valentine's dinner. We had never been to Marmalade so decided to try it. We arrived around 6:00 and were seated promptly. The server was initially attentive, but after our salad was served she came and told us she was taking a break. We never saw her again, and her replacement didn't appear. The main course was served by the bus staff. My ribs ($20) were so dry and burned that I couldn't eat them, and since the server never returned we never got a chance to ask for help. The server left about 6 tables untended for about a half an hour. No one else appeared near our table to refill water or ask how things were going. Finally another server appeared to take our plates away, and we explained about the ribs. She said "sorry" and left. The manager did come a little later and offered dessert. I declined since I never got a meal. We did accept not being charged for the ribs and salad. I don't think I will return.

Good Service, Nice Atmosphere, Mediocre Food, 2/9/2008
Reviewer: Lee Patchett from Santa Barbara
Nice ambience, good service, just mediocre food. Tried to go here a couple of weeks ago and the line was too long. Went today for brunch at 11:00A.M. and found the place wasn't crowded. The decor is very plesant and we were seated immediately and had very good service—good refills on coffee and iced tea—friendly wait staff. The problem was the food. My husband ordered the "Filet-Mignon Chile Omelet." His potatoes were luke-warm and the "filet mignon chile" consisted or two half-inch pieces of mystery meat in a pedestrian mostly bean chile. His side of potatoes was a little less than luke-warm. My order of "Bobby's Breakfast Sandwich" was listed on the menu as consistting of two fried eggs, smokey bacon, cheese, tomato, and lettuce and a side of potatoes. This was OK except that there was no evidence either in taste or visiblity of any bacon. Good Points: The presentation was very good—things looked nice. Husband liked the coffee and got several refills. I liked the potatoes—mine were hot. Bad Points—The food was just not very good.

A Bit Disappointed!!!, 2/6/2008
Reviewer: Candy from goleta,ca
We were very excited to see a new place to eat here in town...I have heard great reviews from Marmalade in we went!! Very sad to say that we did not like it both times that we went.Food is so-so,staff is nice,but kind of ditsy.The chairs are way too big for how many tables there are.Both times that I went,EVERYONE kept bumping into my chair!!Sad!!!!

Astounded First Time Customer, 2/5/2008
Reviewer: Jen from Santa Barbara
We finally had a babysitter and had an opportunity to dine at the new Marmelade Cafe last night. I am still in awe how poor the food was. We ordered French Onion soup with a large soggy piece of wheat bread and a square slice of half melted jack cheese...similar to what I put on my kid's sandwiches. Embarrassed, we sent the soup back. Our two entrees were also less than acceptable. The only good thing I'm afraid was the bread and wine.....and our server was friendly and attentive, although I could tell he wasn't enthused about the menu when I asked for recomendations. The food was almost insulting. With having to fork out precious babysitting dollars, I will not be back. I really hope they can pull themselves together quickly.

Not so great for lunch either, 2/2/2008
Reviewer: Elena from Santa Barbara, CA
Well, I went back for lunch and ordered a salad. The goat cheese was a blob in the middle of the greens as if no-one had time or the inspiration to make it look attractive. The greens were fine but the size was pretty small. Also there was no bread or anything alongside my salad. Considering the cost, it looked forlorn indeed.

Poor Training of Wait Staff - Average Food & Expensive, 1/25/2008
Reviewer: Ann from Santa Barbara
I've been to the new Marmalade Cafe 4 separate times since it opened. Twice for lunch and twice for breakfast. All 4 times we were there, the wait staff was more interested in visiting amoung themselves than providing us customer service. The chairs are heavy and the wide ornamental chair backs interfere with moving throughout the restaurant. In addition, no one offered to fill our water/ice tea glasses, we ordered pancakes and received no butter or syrup, we ordered toast and received no jam, and then once asked, they were not prompt in providing these items. The management has no idea how to train employees or serve customers with care. For the price, the food is average and the service is very poor.

Good Breakfast, but watch out for the coffee., 1/23/2008
Reviewer: Eric from SB, CA
Eaten here twice, food and service are good. but 3 bucks for a cup of coffee in the oversize espresso cup. smallest coffee cup I've seen. and 3 bucks, come on!

Good with Strings Attached...., 1/22/2008
Reviewer: Ryan from Santa Barbara, CA
I've been to Marmalade Cafe twice and have been very happy with both meals. The food was very good, a bit overpriced, and the service was good as well. My only beef (so far), is how much a martini costs. I had a saphire martini on the rocks the other night and it was $11.50. Wowser! I would expect that at Biltmore or Bacara, but Marmalade cafe? Turns out it's 8 bucks for the gin, 3 bucks because it's a "martini" (all it is is dry vermouth!), and $0.50 for the ice. Are you kidding me? I guess I'll get saphire neat, a glass of ice water, and transfer the ice to make it an $8 martini on the rocks!

Busy place indeed!, 1/22/2008
Reviewer: MK from Santa Barbara
Went for lunch a second time over the holiday weekend and the place was again packed. Hostess seemed to be having an off day and couldn't help me locate my friend who had left word she was waiting for a second person. It is a big place and hard to spot someone in a nook or cranny. Mentioned it to the waitperson and the manager came over immediately to apologize - very professional! Food was delicious, waitstaff was attentive and efficient even when clearly very busy. Looking forward to trying more dishes...


A great addition to Santa Barbara!, 1/16/2008
Reviewer: Robert from Goleta
We have eaten at Marmalades 3 times to date. It is outstanding. The breakfast and lunches were delicious and served promptly by very competent servers. We are very glad there is a new restaurant of this caliber in La Cumbre area as we needed one!

OK, but...., 1/10/2008
Reviewer: Frank from Santa Barbara, CA
We were a party of six, who had to leave by 6:30. We had a 5:00 reservation. So far, so good. The menu was large, and a bit confusing. We ordered drinks and explained to our friendly waitress that we had a time problem. "No problem!" was the smiling answer. Don't believe them! We each ordered an appetizer and a main course. The corn tortilla soup and the French onion soup were nice - the bowl is huge, suggest ordering a cup. The entrees seemed to take forever, and were OK. Cobb salad with feta? OK, but... We had to press them to get out on time, which should not have been the case. Bottom line - an acceptable place for post-shopping dinner, but not if you have a deadline.

Problems with waitstaff, 1/10/2008
Reviewer: Bill - not a prude from SB, CA
The waitstaff were bumping into each other there were so many. However, that didn't mean we received good service. (What do they do in that little coffee room?) Some of the girls had low-cut tops on, which isn't going to turn on the female patrons. (This reflects on management.) Been there twice for breakfast on Sunday. Food good first time, not so good second time. There are many better choices in this town.

No Marmalade No toast, 1/9/2008
Reviewer: Sandy in Santa Bruta from Santa Barbara Ca
I was hungry for fish and chips. My friendly waitress offered to return the dried bullets and over salted chips back to the kitchen and the second attempt of what was fillet mignon chili and sodium charged turkey with a plop of mayo discharged my last attempt towards a rewarding lunch. The coffee was entertaining though, soap bubbles popping over the lip of the cup! . Next Sunday I will light a candle in Church for a good Marmalade food prayer and pray that you will get it right!

organics, 1/9/2008
Reviewer: A.J.Medina from goleta,ca.
1st time dining--had breakfast & it was just fine-just need a little grooming by by a good expediter & experieced head server,otherwise time should make it a great restaurant---I'll be back to taste the rest of the menu & do another rating.

Working out the kinks, 1/8/2008
Reviewer: Amanda from Santa Barbara
I went for breakfast with my boyfriend this past weekend and, I was somewhat disapointed. The service was really poor, though I do feel bad for our waitress becuase it seemed that she got frazzled by something that wasn't her fault (a food runner brought the wrong plate to a table near me and those particular customers kind of let her have it though it wasn't her fault at all). Next time, just don't let something like that throw your game off so much. After that, even flagging her down to ask for an Orange Juice was rather difficult. The food would have been very good if it had been warm, but it wasn't. the potatoes were luke warm upon arrival, but quickly turned cold and hard, while the egg dishes were just plain cold from the start. Also, you might want to either butter the toast ahead of time or supply butter that isn't straight from the fridge and rock hard making it unspreadable. I hope that you are all just working out the kinks of opening a new restaurant. I would be willing to give it one more shot, but please take these reviews and make a few small changes.

Not good enough, 1/7/2008
Reviewer: N.C. Shepherd from Ojai, CA
We had breakfast at Marmalade on Christmas Eve. It was FREEZING inside. The staff was almost as cold. My guest and I both ordered Eggs Benedict. Uninspired is what I would call it. Needless to say it was warm when it arrived but cooled quickly. The English muffin hadn't been toasted or grilled so it was limp adding nothing to the dish. The eggs and sauce quite good but a little more hollandaise would have been nice. The potatoes on the side limp and greasy though diced chili was a nice addition. When I requested a fresh cup of coffee, mine had grown cold due to inattention, the waitress returned with my dirty cup full to overflowing. Service was extremely indifferent.

Horrible Service, Cold food, 1/7/2008
Reviewer: Jennifer from Santa Barbara, CA
Service was bad and awkward. Woman never brought the bread, we had to request from a bus boy passing by. Woman never brought appetizers (which we ordered 30 minutes before the meal, because she took that long to come back to get the rest of our order). Again, we asked a passing by bus boy, who brought us our very cold appetizers WITH OUR DINNER!! My husband's $30 steak was hard and tasteless... Needless to say, we won't be going back.

Horrible Service, Expired Condiments, Bland Food, 1/6/2008
Reviewer: Sukanya from Santa Barbara, CA
My children and I went there for lunch on Friday. I ordered the pork chops, which was delicious, but the other dishes that my children ordered were horrible. My daughter ordered this seafood pasta that was supposed to have a spicy tomato sauce, but the sauce was very watery and bland. One of my sons ordered the fish and chips. He said they were very plain, and he asked for some malt vinegar with it. We expected the condiments to be fresh because the restaurant had just opened, but in the middle of our meal, we had discovered that the vinegar was expired. My other son ordered the country fried chicken, and said it was very bland, "IHOP's is better." Throughout our meal, we had to conserve our water because ours were not refilled as much as the tables around us. Other tables got bread at the beginning of their meal, but we didn't. We had to ask for water consistently, unlike other tables. We noticed that other tables had much better service than ours.

yum, 1/6/2008
Reviewer: Kristen from SB
Cool new place. The salads are huge! i also like the huevos rancheros! the service has been great both times ive been there too

fabulous everything!, 1/5/2008
Reviewer: Valerie Summer from Cocoa Beach, FL
Everything was wonderful! We are frequent visitors from Cocoa Beach, FL, and like to try new restaurants every time we come here, so this was our first, second, and third trip to this relatively new restaurant. Our group is large and that sometimes causes a problem when we dine, but there were absolutely no problems on any of our visits here. We tried a little bit of everything, it seems, and had no problems with any of our orders, although we had to wait a little, but we thought that was because of the holiday season. The first trip we had a FABULOUS waitress - I believe her name was Amanda (who looked like she should be in the movies!) - and she had no problems at all with anything, so we asked for her on our repeat visits. If everyone there is as nice, patient, and competent as she was, then you should be incredibly successful. We hope to see you on our next visit to beautiful SB!

Bad Food and Worse Service, 1/4/2008
Reviewer: Russell Lombardo from Santa Barbara, CA
My wife and I dined at your new SB restaurant and had the worst lunch meal -- and even worse service today (24 December 2007) that I think we've ever had. The waiter was completely incompetent, making mistakes all through the disaster, errors in everything. Here's a list: 1. Took at least three or four attempts to get the sparkling water drink order correct 2. Forgot my French onion soup -- twice. Then served my entree and said he would bring out my soup soon -- I canceled the soup at that point. 3. Didn't bring rolls to our table; we had to ask 4. Didn't bring jams for the toast; again had to ask 5. Didn't get my Parmesan red snapper order correct. Had to be remade which took an extra 15+ minutes, then was served dripping in greasy butter. It was terrible. Finally a manager came to our table to apologize, he looked to be all of 20 years old, and instead of compensating at least my $18 lunch, he offered us desserts! Unbelievable. We declined and left. This was the worst dining experience I've ever had. It's not exactly an auspicious opening for your new restaurant. Bad food, that is overpriced, the worst service I've seen in quite some time, and no offer to not charge for the horrendous lunch. Santa Barbara is a small town and bad news travels fast. I contacted the headquarters who apologized and sent us a gift certificate for a free meal at Marmalade. I am not sure whether we will ever use it though.

New Year's at Marmalade, 1/1/2008
Reviewer: mx from SB
We wanted to have an early dinner out so decided to chance getting into this very popular new restaurant. At 6 p.m. we were able to get two seats at the bar, which is where we prefer to sit anyway. Within minutes the restaurant was completely full and their was a line out the door. The service was as good as it gets for a cafe. The french fries were excellent as were the vegetables. The main courses (gnocchi and fish and chips) were okay but not very flavorful. We will go back for breakfast and lunch though as it has great potential.

Very Good, 12/30/2007
Reviewer: Danny from Santa Barbara
To start the menu is like the last reviewer said huge. The atmosphere is nice just a bit confusing for the menu, some of the items on the menu just do not fit where you are, but that’s ok. The food was great I had the chicken tortilla soup which was one of the best I have had. I also had the BBQ chicken salad. I had them leave out the corn and when the salad came out there was nothing on it but chicken. I sent the salad back and the kitchen had misunderstood the request, not a big deal it was an easy fix. The new salad came out and it was very good. To top it off the manager came over and said he had taken the salad off the bill since they didn't get it right the first time. Not necessary at all but very nice of him. My friend had the chicken enchiladas which I try and were some of the best I have had. The beans and rice that came with it was amazing. The waitress was great, and she did a great job of explaining everything. I’ll be back again and again.

Filet Mignon Quesadilla, 12/30/2007
Reviewer: Rob from Santa Barbara, CA
I had heard good things about this place, so I decided to see how good their dinner was. The menu is huge, but everything on it sounded pretty good. I had the filet mignon quesadilla, and my girlfriend had the coconut shrimp. The food came pretty fast considering how busy it was, and the atmosphere was great. The food was great, and I will definitely be back!

Not bad for the first day, 12/28/2007
Reviewer: Elena from Santa Barbara, CA
My friends and I had breakfast on their opening day. The waitstaff seemed a little disoriented and didn't have enough people to attend to so they were standing around a bit. We had a great waiter who was very attentive and addressed all our requests in a friendly manner. I ordered the french toast and I'm sorry to say that it didn't come close to that of the Cajun Kitchen's. It wasn't coated enough in egg batter nor fried enough. Also the pieces were quite small. I felt I was eating slightly eggy white toast. The atmosphere of the place is really nice and I'mlooking forward to checking it out for lunch.

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