Santa Barbara > Restaurants > Barbecue Company
Neighbor Tims BBQ

Barbecue Company
No longer in business
Opened: 2009-02 Closed: 2015-07

3807 Santa Claus Ln, Carpinteria
Phone: (805) 684-2209

  • Category: BBQ
  • Hours: Mon-Tue closed, Wed-Thu noon-2pm & 5pm-8pm, Fri-Sun noon-8pm
  • Price: $10 - $20
  • Serving: Lunch & Dinner
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Reviews by the General Public

Way more than a tad overpriced, 6/19/2014
Reviewer: JD from Santa Barbara, CA
$21 for brisket? Really? And let's not even talk about three bucks and a quarter for a Coke.

YUM!!!, 11/9/2012
Reviewer: leelee from Santa Barbara, CA
I really like the smoked turkey, its sooo tender and smoked just right! The coleslaw is also a favorite, I try them all over the country, this is good. I tase the luv in this mans food. Sometimes, good food takes time. Chill out with a beer, watch a show, dont be so uptight! Jeez, people be a little thankful, you can even go out to eat!!!

Great BBQ - Severely Understaffed (again), 9/30/2012
Reviewer: DC from Santa Barbara, CA
Saturday afternoon was my fourth trip to Barbecue Company and it was exactly the same as the previous three. The food is is the best BBQ in the area - tri-tip, pork, brisket, all delicious. The waiters hustle (literally, one guy was running), but the place is always understaffed...a hostess or bartender would help. Even a floor manager would alleviate a lot of the waiting.

We loved it!, 2/10/2012
Reviewer: StuO from Santa Barbara, CA
My wife and I really loved this place for the food and service which were both terrific. All the ribs were delicious as were the sides. Portions are humongous. We had two additional meals each with what we took home after stuffing ourselves while we ate at the restaurant. I like the atmosphere and the location is great foe when we drive down the 101 from SB. The TV showed a terrific video of a Kenny Loggins concert while we dined. I did not like the BBQ sauces in the squeeze bottles on the table but the sauce on the ribs themselves was tasty.

I'll be back! Yum!, 9/25/2011
Reviewer: Becky from Santa Barbara, CA
So, I says to my hubby 'let's try that BBQ place on Santa Claus Lane' ... The pulled chicken sandwich was well stacked, tender chicken, cheesy - better than expected. Macaroni and cheese - Best Ever (Blush, take note - lobster not required). The service was attentive, professional, super fast, and again - better than expected. Imagine my surprise when I came on line to write a review and saw all the negative comments! Wow, not our experience at all. We will be back and share our experience with friends.

The Barbeque Company steps it up!, 9/1/2011
Reviewer: Andrew Dickson from Santa Barbara, CA
I tried this place a few years back when they first opened up and wasn't impressed to say the least but I chose to try it again. This time around was a better experience. The food was up to par with my BBQ standards and service was not half bad. Keep up the good work!

Terribly Disappointing, 7/6/2011
Reviewer: Barbara from Santa Barbara, CA
I've tried to like this place and returned twice but never again. The dry rub is awful and the sauces are worse. Heard they buy them at Costco and they sure taste like it. Blech.

Service terrible, food to match, 5/30/2011
Reviewer: Kevin from Los Angeles, CA
we sat in one of the only open clean tables, right next to an unbussed table that remained that way during both our 45 minute wait for food, the 15 minutes it took us to eat what was edible, as well as the time it took to get someone to give us the check. Other people were waiting for food that was sitting at the pass getting cold. People that arrived before us waited longer to get their checks. Food was marginal, did not smell right, and tri-tip tasted like it was cooked a few days before and reheated. Lighting was not conducive to a comfortable dining experience. If this was my restaurant, I would use fresh food, either train the staff or replace them and change the lighting.

Very disappointed, 5/22/2011
Reviewer: Margaret from Carpinteria, CA
After reading the good reviews I was anxious to try this restaurant. I was really disappointed. The food was passable, but not great and expensive. My ribs were supposed to be baby backs, but they were tough and much larger than any baby back ribs I have ever seen before. My husband said his brisket was good, but he got 3 small pieces. I have never eaten in a restaurant where bread was considered a "side". The sides were expensive and basically tasteless. We did not get any offers to refill our drinks and the place was not busy. I don't think we will be going there again any time soon.

Disappointment, 1/19/2011
Reviewer: J Manning from Santa Barbara, CA
We took my Uncle out to eat early on Sunday (2 pm). There were 2 or 3 other parties there (NOT busy). When we ordered, we were all looking forward to cornbread w/our barbecue. But it wasn't ready yet. The ribs were good but they needed more sauce. Since the waitress never came back to check on us, we ate them dry. The cole slaw had way too much celery seed in it & the mac & cheese was tasteless. The bill was $60 (& my Uncle had a sandwich). Too pricey for average food.

As good as they have in TX, 12/26/2010
Reviewer: Randy from Santa Barbara, CA
Having lived in TX for 10 years, my wife and I know good BBQ - after all TX has the best, we think. The Barbeque Company would be at the top of any "Best of BBQ" list in TX. The food is smoked well and the sides are great, too. I'm partial to the beef ribs and never get tired of their taste. The service is just the right amount of attention with personality. No "what to you want? here it is? and now here's your bill" indifferent service.

I love this place!, 11/4/2010
Reviewer: Nicole Wilson from Santa Barbara, CA
This is the best BBQ place in all of SB. I don't know how anyone doesn't love it. The food is great, the service is great and the atmosphere is great. I wouldn't highly reccomend it.

Not so good BBQ, 4/30/2010
Reviewer: Chris Beason from Santa Barbara, CA
Ordered the "burnt ends sandwich" to go over the phone. Woman reported it would be ready in 10 mins. I arrived 13-15 mins later. The woman at the front told me it would take a few more minutes for my order to be ready. She walked several times back and forth to the kitchen. I overheard her argue with the chef about my order. Then after another 10 mins she arrived with my food. I drove approx 3 mins to my business to eat. What i found was "burnt ends" that tasted soggy, almost a microwaved flavor. The coleslaw on top was very bland, and the roll was hard. I moved to the side order of beans to find a mixure of beans and onions with mostly onions. This is the third time i ate at the Barbecue Company, I gave it three chances over the past year. Sad to say i will never go back. I will not pay high prices for poor BBQ that i could find prepared better at the grocery store in a prepackaged container. Try harder BBQ Co.

pricey but passable, 3/22/2010
Reviewer: Chris C from Santa Barbara, CA
Santa Barbara still needs a good barbecue joint. The Barbecue Company in Summerland isn't it - too expensive, too clean, and too canned to qualify. I say 'canned' because that's how the brisket tasted. Yep, there's a nice pink smoke ring; but the texture seems like the beef has been sweating in a steam room after cooking rather than basking in a smoke-filled sauna - it's got a funky, almost soggy texture. (Sandwich was served on a French roll.) "Pulled" chicken was chunks of bland white meat; baby-back ribs were dry rubbed and tender, though also a little bland. (Heard positives about the sausage but didn't try it.) They rely on 4 sauces in bottles at the table to add the flavor - a sweet mustard Carolina-style, a sweet Kentucky-style, a generic sweet BBQ and a spicier not-as-sweet with a little kick. One of them should satisfy most hungry tourists, though brisket purists need to keep driving. Beans are slow-cooked pintos - not sweet - with a tart rib char undertone. Fine-chopped coleslaw was OK, as was the chopped salad. Garnish was a lettuce leaf, a couple of sweet bread-and-butter pickle slices and an apricot half. There's still a great business opportunity around here for someone who really knows how to fire a smoker, understands slow-cooked down-home hospitality, and lets the quality of the barbecue speak for itself.

Great BBQ, 3/15/2010
Reviewer: Nicole from Santa Barbara, CA
I've been here only once, but thus far this is the best BBQ I've had in Santa Barbara. The pork ribs are meaty, well seasoned and coming off the bone. The pulled pork sandwich is composed of moist chunks of pulled pork piled so high that you will certainly have leftovers. Sauces at each table include choices such as spicy, original, hickory and vinegar. The sweet potato fries are perfectly cooked, the coleslaw is light on the mayo with plenty of celery seed and the iced tea is brewed to perfection. On service: the waitress we had was friendly, genuine, knowledgeable, attentive and down-to-earth. Santa would be proud.

Authentic BBQ near Santa Barbara!, 3/5/2010
Reviewer: Jessica from Santa Barbara, CA
After living in SB for about a year, my husband & I have tried many area restaurants but until tonight were not able to find good bbq. We decided to drive to Carp tonight and try The Barbecue Company. The meats were delicious! The baby back ribs were slow cooked with a dry rub - like good ole' tennessee ribs! The beef brisket was moist and the pulled pork was delicious. We both got combo platter that came with 2 meats ( full-sized) and 2 sides, leaving plenty for left-overs tomorrow - yummy! The prices were very reasonable for the quality and portion size. The service was attentive and the decor is attractive. We will definitely be returning!

Go for the beef ribs, 1/25/2010
Reviewer: Michael from Santa Barbara, CA
Pork ribs are good. Beef is superior. I ate a full rack of the baby backs, I much prefer spare ribs, but they were okay. The beef ribs are killer. Get a full order of the beef ribs and take the remainder home. Wish I got a choice of sauces as they were a bit sweet for me. The owner should smile more.

Great food, great music, great service! , 9/20/2009
Reviewer: Sarah from Santa Barbara, CA
The pulled pork is moist and tender! There are several different types of sauce to top it with, but I asked for the Volcano, which is their habanero barbecue sauce. SO GOOD. and the Kentucky "wet and wild" is tangy, which I also love on pork. You wouldn't expect it, but the BBQ co's smoked turkey breast is so moist, it beats any other smoked turkey breast I've ever had. I went when the restaurant first opened and it was OK, but now its killer, they really have worked out the kinks! And the live blues made the dining experience even better.

Dry and Flavorless, 6/11/2009
Reviewer: Thomas from Santa Barbara, CA
Don't waste your money! you would be better off getting Loyds pulled pork out of a tub if you want pulled pork. Brisket was the driest beef i have ever eaten that was not jerky.

Love it, 5/24/2009
Reviewer: Anthony from Santa Barbara, CA
Great food. The Rib tips are my favorite. The sauces are exceptional. Great Lemonade. The service was slow the first time I went, but it has improved. I eat here every couple weeks now.

Good Services excellent BBQ sauce, 4/21/2009
Reviewer: Candy from Santa Barbara, CA
Went here last Saturday with my BF for lunch and we were sooo hungry! Ordered the pull pork nachos OMG the biggest nacho plate came out. It was hot and there was plenty of pulled pork not just chips and cheese. I had the brisket was ok a little dry so I put some of the spicy BBQ sauce and I was in heaven, my BF had the sausage sandwich he wasn’t impress cause he was use to picking his sausage. It was expensive for lunch but we were definitely full. we took a lot of it home for dinner. I would definitely recommend the spicy BBQ sauce. mmmm good. The waitress was very attentive and friendly.

Good Food/Service but pricey and food could be hotter, 3/30/2009
Reviewer: Glenn from Buellton
Food was served on the cold side and it did not help that the air conditioning was on high. Overall good food and a nice addition to SB area for BBQ but the price was a little steep so expect to pay some dinero. Nice waitresses. They serve with some dry rub on and then you can put the sauce on yourself at the table(sauce is cold though).

A BBQ Bonanza!, 3/27/2009
Reviewer: Deborah from Carpinteria, CA
Finally a BBQ restaurant that gives you great taste, atmosphere and courteous service all at the same time! Now that's hard to find these days. The owners are proud of their restaurant. They care to give full satisfaction to all their customers and it shows. A professional chef in the kitchen, need I say more? Deborah, Carpinteria, CA

Just OK, 3/12/2009
Reviewer: George from Santa Barbara, CA
The pulled pork really had very little flavor to it on its own and was rather dry. It didn't seem they had used much in the way of spices on it (like marinating it with a good dry rub). It was somewhat better with the sauce on it. They seem to be relying on the liquid smoke in the sauce for the smoke flavor. The Mac and Cheese tasted like the Velveeta variety we used to give our kids, not very inspired. How about using some good sharp cheddar, some sautéed onions, maybe a little smoked ham and a nice buttered, bread-crumb crust thrown under the broiler. We had to get the attention of the Host in order to get our waitress to take our order. The service was about what you would expect from a new restaurant - rather disorganized. The host and servers were very pleasant and eager to please though. Not a horrible experience but not a great one either.

A Winner for Carpinteria!, 3/5/2009
Reviewer: Aldean Mathison from Carpinteria, CA
It was great! The meat is served without sauce so you can pick your favorite flavor. The chef makes all the sauces and there are 4 or 5 to choose from. We had combos of pulled pork, ribs, brisket, sausage and tasted off each others plates. Smokey flavor and wonderfully tender! The sides were my favorites and hard to choose from. Creamed corn with cheddar crust (YUM), coleslaw (PERFECT), beans (From Scratch). Be sure and try the fried okra as an appetizer. We brought a lovely bottle of wine and the corkage was only $5.00. It's a new restaurant and like all new restaurants has a few kinks but nothing to keep us from coming back again and again.

Friendly atmosphere-Great location, 3/4/2009
Reviewer: Ron and Carolyn from Redlands, CA
We had dinner here and we loved the energy which was moving around the room. The food was excellent and the bread pudding is to die for. It was a huge serving and it sure complimented our fantastic food! The staff was eager to please, even though the restaurant was quite crowded. We certainly plan to dine here whenever we are in the area, which is about once every month. This place should really be hopping when the summer arrives!

Yum....., 3/3/2009
Reviewer: Misa from Santa Barbara, CA
I am really shocked by the previous reviews – I just don’t get it. We went on Valentines Day with 3 other couples and had a fabulous experience. The ambience was warm with great music in the background, great art hung on the wall, cozy colors. The place was full and the service excellent. I waited tables for 10 years & know what good service is & how challenging it can be when the place is hopping. This place was packed & you could tell by the vibe of it that people were having a REALLY good time. There was someone going from table to table who wasn’t a server that was greeting people and asking them if they were enjoying themselves which is sort of a rarity to see from my experience. I tried each BBQ sauce with my turkey and couldn’t decide which was my favorite they were all so good. I loved the sweet potato crisp as did those at the table I shared mine with. As for portion sizes nobody at our table complained. There was plenty of food on each plate and nobody left hungry. I didn’t take home leftovers because I ate everything on the plate it was that good. We had such a great time that I hope we make it a Valentine’s Day tradition – to return from more of the same (although I do intend to return before then.) Yes, time will tell – I’m sure they’ll develop a large and loyal clientele and that the owners will enjoy great success!! Best of luck to you!!

Best Pulled Pork!, 3/2/2009
Reviewer: Kathleen from Santa Barbara, CA
Try the pulled pork! It was delicious and each bite was very interesting when topped with each one of the 4 different BBQ sauces. Loved the coleslaw and the fries. Everything seemed ultra fresh and I certainly will be back to try the ribs. Didn't have room for the ice cream with the carmel sauce, but that is also on my next visit wish list. I was there on opening day, and the servers were still working out their routine, but were friendly. Very clean and the smells from the kitchen were fabulous. Will be back soon.

Great BBQ!!, 3/2/2009
Reviewer: Carrie from Carpinteria, CA
Great food, great variety, great sauces!! I have tried the ribs, chicken, smoked turkey, turkey sausage, & pulled pork. All were great! I loved the sauces and it was fun to try all four of them. The side dishes were great! The sweet potato crispers were the best as well as the sweet potato mash. I even had the flourless chocolate cake for dessert which was to die for! I will definitely go back! Nagative reviewers need to give this restaurant a chance to find their footing and give them another try!!

Tummy Busting Good!, 3/2/2009
Reviewer: Bill from Ojai, CA
The challenge with food that tastes so good is that it's easy to eat too much. I have never enjoyed fries so much and the cold slaw was as good as any I have eaten. Four types of BBQ sauce were not only fun to apply but delicious to taste in various combinations. The pulled pork was very good and so generous that I ended up taking some home and so did my wife. All four of us were well satisifed after the main course but we had to end with the vanilla ice cream with carmel and chocolate sauce. Delicious! We had freshly made coffe to end the evening. The service was very good. A great place to go alone or with friends. Go with friends!

BBCUE- Finger licken' good, 3/2/2009
Reviewer: Lynda from Carpinteria, CA
New on the scene and yummy. The many hours of smoking comes through in the succulent meats. You add your own sauce so you don't lose the flavor by having the meat swimming in sauce. Four sauces to choose from: original sweet and tangy; spicy/dangerously delicious; Carolina Mustard or Vinegar (wet & wild). The Savannah Salad is one of my favorites (I had mine w/the pulled pork). I've sampled several sides - especially love the baked beans w/burnt ends and the mac and cheese! Desserts...delicious, but it's tough to leave room for them, but you can take them to go. And the sweet tea is to die for! And they serve Island Brew! Their heart is in the right place, they are passionate...anyone disappointed, I recommend you give them another try; give 'em some time to work out any kinks. They've only been open about two weeks!

Scrumptious Barbeque, 2/27/2009
Reviewer: Elinor and Fred from Carpinteria, CA
Baby back ribs were perfectly prepared. "Polishing the bones" was a scrumptious treat! I sampled each carefully crafted sauce - Delicious. The Sweet Potato Crisp was heavenly - light, fluffy with yummy carmelized pecans. I had a few bites of my husband's great Grilled Sausage Sandwich. The coleslaw was exceptionally flavorful - not super creamy. We shared a divine dessert - homemade refreshing ice cream drizzled with housemade caramel sauce. I'm not usually a big fan of caramel. But I've not had caramel this good since childhood. Many, many thanks for a great, satisfying dining experience. Oh yeah, all of the staff was very attentive and helpful. Best wishes to you!! We will definitely be returning (& bringing friends/family with us). Thank you!

Very Disappointing!, 2/25/2009
Reviewer: Rebecca from Santa Barbara, CA
The food tasted at least three days old. Spolied avacado on my salad, wilted lettuce that was brown on all the edges and mushy soft tomatoes that were bitter! Needless to say I only had two bites of that expensive salad. Ribs seemed as if they were cooked in an oven for too long. Very cheap cut of ribs also. I used to serve ribs in my eatery years ago. Yes this was the cheapest cut for the price of the good quality cuts! You really can't pull one over on people. The prices are way to much for the quality. Go to a fast food place and you will be more satisfied and this is from someone who rarely eats fast food. The ambiance is horrible also. I heard three complaints out of the 13 diners there and I was seated in the far corner. You can hear everything everyone is saying! They need to break it up with plants or something. I felt we were all watching each other eat! It was very uncomfortable. The waitress was kind and sweet but seemed so uncomfortable and couldn't answer many questions about the menu. The owners stood in the kitchen watching her struggle the whole time without even thinking of coming out to help her. Just Weird. Pitch in and make it homey and comfy. I felt stressed out the whole time I was there.I could not leave fast enough. The one star is for the good wine and the other is for the poor girl trying so hard to please her bosses that just stood and watched her struggle. Shame on you! Where is your small town appeal? I won't be back.

Bummer "Q!" Why is There Still No BBQ in SB?, 2/24/2009
Reviewer: Hank from Santa Barbara, CA
You can't have BBQ unless you have smoke and fire, this place lacks both; unfortunately another Santa Barbara "BBQ" bummer. BBQ is meat slowly cooked over indirect heat, infused with the smoke of quality hardwoods and hopefully a real fire providing the heat; the process turns tough cuts of meat into something that can be truly remarkable. Tender, juicy, and full of flavor. I had high hopes with the new owners here, but wow a really sad disappointment. There is no BBQ here, no pit, and no flavor. I wish I was writing that real BBQ fired by locals had finally come to SB, but after a a "big" combo here and sampling some of the other dishes, there is no way I can recommend dining here. Maybe someday BBQ will be available in SB, but till then I'll stick to smoking at home. Bummer

Non-BBQ Co., 2/24/2009
Reviewer: Tracy from Carpinteria
This is the first BBQ place I have been to where nothing seemed to have been BBQ'd. BBQ leaves dark grill marks on meat and a wonderful aroma in the air. Both were lacking here. We had a large party and tried a number of items. They had run out of ribs at 8 pm, so we had rib tips, a couple chickens, brisket, the combo plate (far too little on the plate for the price), a pulled pork salad, pulled chicken, a few appetizers and desserts. The meats were bland as if they had not been seasoned at all before tossed in the oven. The brisket was cut with the grain instead of against it, and was not tasty. Rib tips and chicken were also bland. Veggies were lacking as a side dish unless you consider corn slathered in cream and cheese or sweet cole slaw a veggie. (Hey, this is California.) The high note of the night was the banana bread pudding, which was buttery and delicious. Unless I'm going back for that and an over 3 dollar a cup cup of coffee, I won't be back.

Will probably never return., 2/23/2009
Reviewer: Maggie from Santa Barbara, CA
My husband and I ordered the sampler platter, and the portions were very small for a plate priced at $29.95.The waitress said the portions would be good for both of us to share. All I have to say is my husband left hungry. However the pulled pork nachos were very good. If I ever go back it will be to take the nachos to go. I also didnt notice a bar area? Nor did I hear any music.

We still miss Texas BBQ, 2/20/2009
Reviewer: Carl from Santa Barbara, CA
First, I'm originally from Texas. This restaurant is not bad for a California BBQ joint; but it is a LONG way from being a good southern "smokehouse". I don't blame the owners. Apparently air quality laws prohibit on-premise outdoor smokers for restaurants like this. You can't have a good smokehouse without the smoke. My wife & I had a combo platter of brisket, pulled pork & babyback ribs, with a fired okra appetizer. The okra was the best dish on the table. The pork was extremely dry and the brisket was tough, like it had been cooked, rather than smoked, way to fast. The ribs were ok; but also tasted reheated rather than cooked on the premises. The service was slow; the waitress obviously inexperienced and the credit card electronic approval system was down, so we had to pay cash.

Bummer, 2/20/2009
Reviewer: Jo from Carpinteria, CA
We LOVED Smokin Jacks. The BBQ Co. doesn't even come close. The atmosphere was pretty dull, and unprofessional, they have some kinks to work out. The front bar was some kind of work station. The ribs are boring. No blackened bits. Didn't seem BBQ'd. They forgot to bring the fried okra,which was the most exciting thing on the menu. They only gave a few french fries on the plate and there was definitely room for more. The prices are good. Such a bummer, but this experience just didn't sit well.

I was really excited to try this place..., 2/19/2009
Reviewer: Jonathan N from Santa Barbara, CA
My friend and I went here and got the sampler platter hoping for some great BBQ... it was very hit or MISS. The baked beans were very very good. The ribs, brisket and pork were passable but a bit boring. The chicken and turkey dishes fell way short. The chicken tasted like plain boiled chicken. The turkey breast was too dry to eat and the turkey sausage was overwhelmed by the anise flavor. My two main problems with this place are A) Nothing tasted smoked or had a smokey BBQ flavor and B) the BBQ sauces that they have lacked any bold flavors. I think if they were able to capture more smokey BBQ flavor and keep the poultry from drying out it would be better. If they made their flavors bolder and stronger (minus the anise) they could have some tasty food. Service was good, but it was apparent that they just opened and the waitresses were trying. Two people tried to take our drink orders and our waitress brought the check without taking our dessert order.

Great dinner, 2/18/2009
Reviewer: Tom from Santa Barbara, CA
I had dinner at the BBQ house and it was great. Food was good (tried a couple of items) and the prices seemed very reasonable. I think they will do very well.

new place in town, 2/18/2009
Reviewer: Michael Guthrie from Santa Barbara, CA
Ribs no flavor, chicken very dry, cole slaw very wet, beans without flavor.Place was clean.Their sauce's was ok.I realize they just opened but they will have a difficult time getting repeat business with their current quality.

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