Santa Barbara > Restaurants > iGrill Korean BBQ
Neighbor Tims BBQ

iGrill Korean BBQ
No longer in business
Opened: 2012-12 Closed: 2015-10

3132 State St, Santa Barbara
Phone: (805) 845-2889

Reviews by the General Public

Great addition to Upper State, 11/21/2014
Reviewer: Ann from Santa Barbara, CA
I dined at IGrill for the first time last night understanding that it was under new ownership and improvements had been made. The food was very fresh and had a great flavor, wonderful salad with a very tasty dressing to start. The restaurant itself is very nice and the atmosphere great. Our service was outstanding, all servers very helpful and attentive to every need. Definitely adding this to the rotation.

* * * * *, 11/14/2014
Reviewer: stu from Santa Barbara, CA
100% improvement under new owners. Ate there twice with a total of 4 other people and we are all raving. Kimchi fried rice, bimbambop, and an omlette dish with veggies and seafood (similar to Japanese okonomyaki) were all prepared in the kitchen and delicious. The all you can eat cook-it-yourself Korean bar-b-cue was wonderful and so much food! Just as important the staff and service were very friendly, accommodating,and efficient. Sauces/dressing marked as HOT are hot, the others tasty and well spiced. The menu is interesting and varied and we will return.

Excellent new incarnation, 11/4/2014
Reviewer: Salmo from Santa Barbara, CA
My friend and I had lunch here Saturday and were so pleased that this restaurant has re-opened, and that the menu is much improved. The service was very attentive and cheerful. You now have the option of grilling your own meat at the table or having it prepared in the kitchen; we chose the latter & were quite satisfied. If you'd grown disenchanted with this restaurant before it closed its doors a while back, try it again. It is a new and better experience now.

Re-opened, 10/29/2014
Reviewer: Salmo from Santa Barbara, CA
I am looking forward to trying this place again. According to the sign in the window, "new owner, new menu".

iGrill Korean BBQ, 1/21/2014
Reviewer: Sally Spork from Santa Barbara, CA
Atmosphere: Located upper State St. Spacious, clean and nice Asianisque atmosphere. Service: We were seated right away, and served quickly after we ordered. We had the AXXESS card which they honor. Food/drink: We ordered a noodle dish and of course had to order the famous Korean entree: Bilgogi. It came with a few small side 'tastes' one was a macaroni salad (random). It was tasty. They cook the meat on your table, for which the server placed the meat, walked away and I guess we were to tend to it? He didn't come back and they were going to be overcooked. My friend noted the grill needed to be hotter. Food was basic and okay. Summary: The main reason we went is we wanted to use the AXXESS card and I wanted to try this place... heard mixed reviews of the buffet. . Would I go back? Probably not, wasn't wowed.

Cook your own at the table, 7/7/2013
Reviewer: mike from Santa Barbara, CA
This was a strange experience. One page of the menu is devoted to the $39.95 meal and the other side has the $8.-$10. with the expensive meal you get four different meats +. The cheap meal only one meat. With both you get refillable tiny side dishes I think there was 6. On cooking shows I hear about "pork belly" so I order this. It looks like large pieces of bacon cut into 2" long pieces of mostly fat. MY my the lady setting near me ordered the $39. meal said she liked the pork belly best, what were the other meats like? The place looks good and the server was VERY nice. What could be a fun cook at the table place is just strange. OH two of the side dishes were mac salad and tater salad more picnic than Korean. I did like them and I did get free refills.

not authentic korean, 4/30/2013
Reviewer: john from Santa Barbara, CA
really wanted this place to be good. unfortunately, food was not a reflection of authentic korean food. the classic bulgogi which is thinly sliced ribeye was not even on the menu. various dipping sauces were provided which were pretty foreign to me, and yes I am korean. the banchan (side dishes) were somewhat disappointing. I strongly disagree with the previous reviewer that an authentic Korean restaurant would not do well in Santa Barbara. Go to any korean joint in LA and you will find korean and non koreans alike enjoying food. bulgogi, bibimpap, soon tofu are now familiar dishes to most people. the restaurants in LA have not had to compromise or change and I believe that plays to their strength and growing popularity. I do feel there is a future for korean restaurants in SB. unfortunately, still waiting.

Lovely Surprise! , 3/20/2013
Reviewer: Greg & Yukari from Santa Barbara, CA
iGrill is a desperately needed addition to Sandy Barbara’s vanishing ethnic restaurant scene. Beautiful modern décor; friendly people; good food & drinks. Some of our friends had reviewed this place unfavorably when it first opened, but either they were wrong or it has greatly improved. The seafood pancake was crisp and not at all greasy, and the sauce well-balanced vinegar-soy-chili (nicely spicy, not sweet!). We had four KBQ items, all very good. There is some interesting Nipo-sino influence. Usually, KBQ would be heavily marinated and not need a sauce. At iGrill the marinades are subtler, and there are dipping sauces, like Teppan-yaki. The Chinese influence is in the sauces themselves, one with 5-spice (or at least star-anise). We heard there were too few “sides,” but we got six, with very good kimchi (The macaroni salad, however, is purely ornamental). A “truly authentic” Korean restaurant would not last long in this town, as we all know. But iGrill walks the line nicely, pleasing both the Japanese and Minnesota folks in our party — that's not easy! I hope that the upper State location insolates them from the need to cater any more to (sweet) tourist tastes. Next time we will try the soondubu jigae. Stay tuned. Yay!

Not really Korean food, 3/11/2013
Reviewer: Nancy from Santa Barbara, CA
Arrived when the restaurant was packed with a party of 3 - the host suggested we head next door for a drink and that he'd fetch us when our table was ready. After a long wait, my husband went to see if the table was ready (it was, and had been given away). After a slightly shorter wait (inside the restaurant this time to avoid losing the table again), we were seated. Service was slow but friendly (thus 2 stars). We made sure to over-order based on the 'tapas-style' portions they mention on the menu. Food came out and all I have to say was that this was not Korean food. I am Korean - grew up in Los Angeles where there was tons of Korean food to be had, have a Korean grandmother that cooked at home all the time and have even ventured into the land of Korean-fusion. iGrill was a poorly attempted rip-off of Korean BBQ. All the flavors, seasonings were slightly off - the kimchee was overly salty, the kimchee chigae was also salty and the flavors slightly off (this dish we had to return because the raw egg that they'd thrown into the 'hot pot' was... completely raw). The meat was pretty fatty, poor cuts, under-seasoned (which was a surprise given the kimchee) and in tiny proportions - they were not kidding when they said to order 2-3 meat dishes PER PERSON. Overall, the meal was a disappointment and I was extremely embarrassed to have taken my visiting Korean friend there as well. And at over $100 for the 3 of us, completely not worth it.

excellent, 2/19/2013
Reviewer: Aug from Santa Barbara, CA
great fun food excellent wait staff had the all you can eat lunch 3 kinds of meat 2 types of kimchi soup salad 15.99 reg lunch is 10.00 so for 6.00 you get unlimited will be going back again ....

Birthday Lunch, 2/13/2013
Reviewer: Claire from Santa Barbara, CA
My company and I went here for my birthday lunch... my exerience was good the food was great, not sure why everyone is complaining?! The amount of food was awesome, and if you know how to use a grill you should have a problem cooking you meal, the staff comes around and assit often, the sides were delicious, and the atmosphere was lovely. I'll be back!

Really?, 2/2/2013
Reviewer: Anthony from Santa Barbara, CA
All We have say is that we are sitting here at home waiting for the food poisoning to kick in... Please tell Dustin to come back.... Simply dreadful... It was like cooking on a candle.... Steamed beef and pork.... The decor was clean and nice but that was about the highlight of the experience. We got a kick out of the menu descriptions... "Crispy skinned pork belly"... Yet you have to cook it yourself on about a 130 degree grill... Hhhhmmm.. Lets just say "crispy" is not the correct word to use... Unless of course you stay there all night to get it "crispy",,. I'm sorry to say this... but a total waste of $95 dollars....

Great potential, 1/3/2013
Reviewer: Drgm from Santa Barbara, CA
Four of us went with high hopes and low expectations. Bottom line is that it's a new place and it needs a little tuning. We were there at 8 PM New Year's Eve. There was no heat, so we had to wear jackets throughout the meal. When you sit at your table you look down into the BBQ pot which means you are looking at everyone else's drippings. Lots of oil and food dregs. Not appetizing. That's the bad news. The good is that the meats were very nicely seasoned and the staff -- many of them -- were attentive. Nice pour on the 2nd glass of wine. I've never written a review here and only do so in hopes that the owners will see this and will make some changes. It's a new place so hopefully things will change. We will definitely give it another try.

Save yourself the disappointment , 1/3/2013
Reviewer: Dolly from Santa Barbara, CA
I was so excited to see that Santa Barbara was expanding with its food variety. Unfortunately, it does not give this city a good first impression of what Korean BBQ is. Firstly, there is no all you can eat for dinner so the meat portion is as if they are Tapas for 8.95-10$. Secondly, if you are not forward enough, you will be waiting forever to be seated, served water, or get the bill. Save yourself the time and drive to la for the genuine Korean BBQ experience or go to Igrill if you don't believe me. Happy dining!

So far so good and this was just take-out!, 12/19/2012
Reviewer: Eric from Santa Barbara, CA
I ordered three box meals for take-out last night since the eat-in service is not yet available. I had the chicken, pork and beef short rib meals (split between two people) The meats were lean and tasty with the chicken having the most fat. Usually its the pork thats fattiest but this pork was white meat and delicious. I can't wait for the grill tables to open up. I've been a big fan of Gyu Kaku for years and iGrill looks to be similar. City of Santa Barbara, please let them open soon! EMI

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