Santa Barbara > Restaurants > Panera Bread - Upper State
Omni Catering

Panera Bread - Upper State
3851 State St, Santa Barbara
Phone: (805) 687-7600

Reviews by the General Public

give it a try, 5/30/2018
Reviewer: Tim from Santa Barbara, CA
This review is only about one item. The best bearclaws i have had in a long time. Thery are decent size,moist, drizzled with glaze,have lots of filling, and topped with sliced almonds. I have tried them from a number of places, and i feel these are the best.

Carpet Does Not Belong in a Restaurant
Reviewer: Jean from Santa Barbara, CA
The food is mediocre in quality and so the last thing that should be overlooked in that situation is air quality. This restaurant has carpeting and between the fact that food is being served and inevitably spills and it probably only "swept up", it is a Panera and thus high traffic. Put those two together and you have some really stinky carpet- the place positively reeks on some days. Please, corporate food chain, throw it in the budget for this place to rip up the carpet and install non porous flooring. It's a no brainer

Poor service poor food
Reviewer: Amy from Santa Barbara, CA
This is the third time I have be in Panera for a togo order and the third time they have gotten the order wrong... Not a hard order half sandwich and soup, kids pasta, and a Large Caesar salad. What do I get half Caesar four knifes one spoon one fork no napkins also the bread was just throw in the Togo bag which they should be I separate pastery bags. My older daughter ate with her fingers and nothing to wipe her hands off with. As I stood there waiting for ten minutes I saw two orders go out wrong to patrons eating in house. The kitchen needs training and the servers need to be able to read a ticket to catch the mistakes the kitchen has made.. Spoke with manager turns out she made the order and she also said there is not much training for the employees.. Can't train an employee when you don't have much training yourself. The purpose of great service and great food is to keep the patrons coming back for more.. Panera has failed at both and has lost this customer....

Wait forever just to buy bread
Reviewer: cj from Santa Barbara, CA
OK. This place calls itself a bakery, right? I mean, it's in its name, Panera BREAD! Then why in the heck does one have to wait behind people in line to order (very slowly)sandwiches, no wait! Maybe soup. Oh, but no, I think a salad ~ egads! Just order already!! I've gone in there 3 times now just to get fresh bread and have been behind only a few customers who simply couldn't make up their minds. All I want is a loaf of bread gosh darn it! Can't I just buy it and go on my way? They should have a separate register for bread purchases only. It is frustrating to the point I where now, I simply won't return.

Smells gross in there
Reviewer: Justin from Santa Barbara, CA
I used to live in Colorado Springs and the Panera Bread there was amazing. I was excited to hear one opened in SB. When I first walked in the smell was horrible, that should have been a warning sign. I ordered some chicken bacon sandwich thing (recommended by the cashier) and the tomato bisque. I couldn't stay there with the smell so I took it home. Absolute worst soup and sandwich I have had from a Panera store. The soup was bland and could tell there was a thickening agent. The sandwich had no flavor and the bread was not tasting right. The apple that came with the food was dried up inside. You could shake it and hear the seeds. It's too bad, I used to crave that place.

Reviewer: Charlotte from Goleta
The service was efficient, the food....blah! Cheddar Broccoli soup tasted like pre-fab soup from Vons. The Thai salad was boring and just thoughtless, really. I got a cherry Danish to go for my kids to share, they both said it tasted old and cheap tasting! ( My kids are 8 and 11 years old!) but then, they are used to eating pastry from a real bakery.....Renaud's!

Reliable spot elsewhere, but not in SB
Reviewer: Sophia from Santa Barbara, CA
I travel for work a lot and when I am out of town, I find Panera Bread is a great place to grab a salad or relatively healthy meal. However, this SB location is not up to scratch compared with the other locations I have been to. The service is ok, but the place doesn't feel clean (despite just having opened) and I agree with the reviewer who noted a weird smell (eggs?) in the restaurant. This won't make my lunch spot rotation unless it gets REALLY freshened up, fast.

Wanted to like it...
Reviewer: GG from Santa Barbara, CA
I wanted to try the new Panera, the food looked so good online. But when I got there, the service was slow (waiting on just a few customers), the servers seemed unmotivated and the place just didn't smell clean. I couldn't get over how a new restaurant could smell so unclean---so I left.

Just sampled a few things
Reviewer: CB from Santa Barbara, CA
Wanted to see if Panera might rise above the stuff that passes itself off as pastries in Starbucks and what not. So, seeing the cinnamon buns, which looked big and like they were made from a yeast dough, I could not resist and found...they weren't very good. If I closed my eyes and ate it I wouldn't have known if it was any different from those Honey Buns you get at Vons that cost something like 6 for a dollar. I will say my son got a bagel and liked it and liked the choices of sides you can get with them. But my hunch is the baked sweets, over all, are going to be too similar to the ones out of the package that many places, like Starbucks or Coffee Bean get. The same sources, the same lack of quality even though they look like they would be so great. I will say the people working the counter were working hard and doing a good job.

I wanted to like it but...
Reviewer: Eric from Santa Barbara, CA
I got a turkey/bacon panini and waited longer than I felt I should have to. No biggie, sometimes things are busy behind the counter where I can't see what's going on. I got home with the sandwich and all I could think of was how it reminded me of Jack in the Box's deli sandwiches, only smaller. The bacon was paper thin and fattier than good quality bacon. There wasn't much turkey and the dressing they used tasted very sugary. The bread wasn't very impressive either. Guess I'll be sticking with South Coast Deli when I crave a top-notch sandwich.

Fast service, but with little personality... bleh sandwich.
Reviewer: Lorraine from Santa Barbara, CA
First time at a Panera Bread and it will be the last. It was mediocre at best. I got a panini and it was greasy, not crispy. I'll stick with South Coast Deli!

Good food - rude manager
Reviewer: Amanda from Santa Barbara, CA
I have always loved Panera, in fact my boyfriend used to work at one so I have eaten Panera a lot in the past. The food at this location is really good and totally up to par with existing Panera locations. I know that with any opening establishment, you have to give them time to figure out the kinks. However, today I had an experience with a manager that I thought was pretty rude. I work as a cashier in a retail store in town and whenever my manager needs to speak with me, he patiently waits until I am done with my customer before talking to me, because he is respectful of the customer. However today at Panera, I was in the middle of an order and the manager came over and completely interrupted my transaction to speak with the cashier. To be honest the cashier seemed embarrassed that it was happening. I couldn't believe he couldn't wait 30 more seconds until I was done ordering. It comes across as rude and disrespectful towards your customer. The manager did not even acknowledge my presence and did not acknowledge the fact that he was interrupting the transaction. Perhaps next time he will be more respectful towards his customers and follow the example of other managers out there such as my own.

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