Santa Barbara > Restaurants > Ruby's Diner
Omni Catering

Ruby's Diner
No longer in business
Opened: ? Closed: 2008-09

601 Paseo Nuevo, Santa Barbara
Phone: (805) 564-1941

Reviews by the General Public

Reviewer: Lisa, Roland, Lorelei and Orlando from Santa Barbara, CA
Our whole family loved Ruby's and would come here at least once per week. We loved the food and all the staff who we came to know and regard as friends. We are very sad it is no longer here, and especially that it seemed to disappear so suddenly. SB will not be the same for us without it. My daughter actually cried.

R.I.P., 9/19/2008
Reviewer: DM from Santa Barbara, CA
I will miss Ruby's so much it was such a big part of my childhood :((((((((((((((((

good, 6/7/2008
Reviewer: lauren from santa monica, california
First time I went to ruby's it was my birth day, and then our young waitress took our order, and we got a very simple order, and half an hour later, and our food still wasnt there! When it finally did come, I ate my food in less than five minutes, and the food was very good. Then noticing that it was my birth day, and they had poor service that day, they gave us a complimentary brownie and ice cream. Then I went again, and the service was really good this time .... and so was the food! Overall pretty good

the place to be!, 3/3/2008
Reviewer: Sandro from Switzerland
ruby's is the best place to eat in santa barbara! great service, excellent food, cool atmosphere! and the best waitress ever: britney ;-)

Simply the best, 4/18/2007
Reviewer: Mr & Mrs S Mitchell from London, uk
We came to Santa Barbara on vacation from the uk a few years back and we tried Ruby's for breakfast (absolutely fantastic)!!the service was exceptional, the restaurant is well done and very clean, we are planning another trip in October and will make Ruby's one of our first stops.

romace under the oldies , 12/1/2006
Reviewer: jessica ann simon from Santa barbara , ca
Ilove the service and the food is great and I really love the music it is very romantic and I had a fun experience when I went with two of my friiends and they are in love with each other and they love the love music and I had a blast and it made me feel special because I am glad that the food is healthy and but I wish the fries are not fried and I still love the food and the people who work there.

Don't rate fact because of opinion., 7/13/2006
Reviewer: Jacob from Santa Barbara
It has come to my attention that many people will come here looking to voice their opinion on things they don't know about and won't take the time to look into. Many people say that Ruby's is ca BAD corporate chain robbing locals of their hard earned cash and small town appeal. I walked down state street form Carillo to De La Guerra and I counted exactly 24 stores and found that exactly 16 of them were corporately owned stores. That means that Santa Barbara's beloved small town appeal is ruined right? Well I don't see you fine people attacking the chains which provide you with your COACH purse or your LUCKY BRAND jeans now do I? Mom and Pop - Creative recipes... Go to Smart and Final and find their "Chef's Choice" brand, yeah, real original. These chains get corperate chefs to come up with these recipes that people like, and prepare small parts to send out to their branches to be finished. That's research and development small stores can't afford. As for keeping these chains open it's a great idea! JOB SECURITY, I don't know about you, but do you really want a server going from restuarant to restaurant because the store can't stay open? Keep training, keep wasting, more training, more food cost, and they just pass that on to you. Do you really want that mediocre top sirloin to cost you $35? I didn't think so. If you think the service was good and the food was good, then why makes the kids who work at these places, who NEED this money because they aren't rich like you have to worry about where the next paycheck is coming from. When Min Wage goes up, say goodbye to your small stores. One more thing - If you don't like how they're big now, just go tell your locals that they can't get bigger. I get a million dollars on hopes that they all some day hope to be big chains in which they can keep royalties. Am I defending Ruby's? No, I'm defending jobs and facts.

mediocre, 6/21/2006
Reviewer: jacquie from newbury park, ca
with all the wonderful places to eat in santa barbara, why bother with this ho-hum, so-so chain. my husband and i visited recently because some friends from out of town (state) asked us to meet them there. we groaned - but tried to approach it with an open mind. the menu was predictable (even though it had been recently revamped) the food was adequate, and the faux 50's atmoshphere tired and oh-so-cliche. the service was fine - nothing special, the food arrived on time, as it should. but - please find one of the fabulous spots to eat in this city while you are here - and avoid the chains that serve the same old stuff - the same old way, robbing true restauranteurs of business. what a shame it occupies such a great piece of real estate.

my favorite, 5/19/2006
Reviewer: kjdskljfklsdaj from jujfodsao, aka
ruby's diner is my favorite restraunt that i can think of! it is soo great they have awsome food and have an milkshakes they even have a little train to go with it... i if i lived someplace that had a ruby's diner i would definaly apply there..

ruby's, 4/10/2006
Reviewer: jill from chandler, az
it's aaaactually a 40's diner

Great food and service!!!, 3/7/2006
Reviewer: Cassie from Santa Barbara, CA
Ruby's is one of my favorite places for a casual lunch or dinner. It's great for families and the 50's theme is fun. The servers are very friendly and the food is delicious. I love the milkshakes, the burgers and the grilled cheese (simple, but not everyone can make it this good!) Also, the Fit Fries have less trans fat than normal fries but are just as good!! I would definitely recommend!!!!

GREAT FISH TACOS, 12/28/2005
Reviewer: Joanne Van Riemsdyk from Santa Barbara, CA
The location is great (in SB) if you are shopping and get hungry, the fish tacos are great and the burgers too. The servers are friendly and the 50's theme is ok.

ok but overrated, 11/8/2005
Reviewer: Stephan Fukasawa from Isla Vista, CA
The super burger is ok but the bread is far to greasy from all the butter. My fries came out luke warm and the salad was ok but served on the same plate as the burger and fries. For a retro diner the food is very overpriced. When a burger costs 8.00 fries should be included, even at the far more upscale Paradise Cafe or Santa Barbara Brewing Company my bill with tip for a burger, fries, and drink is not 16.00. Servers were very nice though. For the retro experience eat at the original on Balboa Pier, I dont remember is the food is any better or cheaper but the atmosphere is far better than this mall location.

Mis-understood, 9/25/2005
Reviewer: Jacob Varley from Santa Barbara/Rnacho Mirage CA
It is often that many people will mis-understand the statements and the porpuses for the Ruby's Resturant Group. A reviewer above said the chain had no history - it's rather obvious to me that, that reviewer has never asked about the history, so I shall fill in. Ruby's Diner was started by Dough Cavanagh and Ralph Cosmides on Balboa pier where they both maned the small restuarant in front and back of house. The restuarant is in fact named after Ruby Cavanagh, the mother of doug, and the way the food is prepared is true to how she would have done. The resturant is OFTEN over looked because it's primary item is burgers, people say sure I can go to McDonald's or Carl's Jr if I want a burger, and yes you can, but if you want good service, Great burgers, and excellent shakes you can't. The expense is passed on to the customer because you enjoy a fine atmostphere, freindly staff, some of the most beautiful locations for any resturant. If you want fast food you're going to the wrong place, if you want an experience you'll never forget, whether it's breakfast, lunch, or dinner, than Ruby's Diner will be sure to please you and your entire family. I only say this because I work at Ruby's and have for the past two years, this is not the only location I have worked at and have dined at. Every time I go to another city, the first thing I do is find out where the local Ruby's is at even though I eat at one nearly every day. If you've never been to a Ruby's I suggest you do so and see for yourself. As for the comment about be upset that Ruby's was trying again in Santa Barbara I can only ask why it is you are so against creating jobs? For more information please visit your local Ruby's or visit us online at

Pineapple Shakes!, 7/31/2005
Reviewer: Megan from Santa Barbara,CA
Cute little place if you like that 50's retro theme. Decent Hamburgers & fries, but the onion rings and pineapple shakes are the best! Just like Jack-Rabbit-Slims, kitty katt.

Good Hawaiian Burger, 7/19/2005
Reviewer: Santa Barbara Dianne from Santa Barbara
I enjoyed the Hawaiian Burger and appreciated the friendly servers as well as the cleanliness of this place. My only complaint is that for the price I would have liked to have had fries included with my hamburger---but that's all. I am looking forward to trying their breakfast menu which I intended to do on this visit but was a few minutes too late.

great diner, 4/3/2005

a wonderful place for everyone, 3/26/2005
Reviewer: diana
ruby´s diner is a great family restaurant and one of the best restaurant in santa barbara. Their food is great and their shakes are the best and their staff is so friendly and great with kids. They really make you fill welcome unlike some other restaurant in santa barbara

A Blast To The Past!!, 2/22/2005
Reviewer: Margaret from Fresno , CA
This was our first time eating at Ruby´s and we were definitely satisfied. We look forward to visiting again this year . The food,service and atmosphere was excellent. We had a great time that went along with the great food. Thank You Ruby´s!!

Revamped menu, 9/3/2004
Reviewer: Floyd Stoats from Santa Barbara, CA
We liked Ruby´s because it was a good place to take the kids. They´ve recently revamped the menu to include more healthful choices, and they are really quite good. They do their French fries in canola oil (a very good thing). They also have a first rate hot fudge brownie sundae (I think the best in town). Only complaints are that the kitchen can be very slow, and the food doesn´t always come out at the same time. By the way, they have a 1940s theme, not a 1950s theme, as is commonly thought (listen to the great music they play).

love it!, 7/11/2004

i absolutely LOVE rubys diner the service is great and not just great service the people there are so friendly! i would reccomend this place for anyone who loves good food and good people! OH and friday nights KIDS EAT FREE and theres a magician. i love it you should try it

Chain restaurants wanted - dead or alive, 4/30/2004
Reviewer: Carrie G. from Los Angeles, CA
I was upset when I found out Ruby´s was making a second attempt at the Santa Barbara location. Santa Barbara is no place for a chain restaurant that doesn´t seem to fit into the community, and has no history. Some of the best dining in the state is here, and I hate the fact that large chains our invading our seaside community, and stripping its charm away.

Enjoyable Atmosphere - Fun 50´s Restuarant, 1/12/2004
Reviewer: Ken from Santa Barbara, CA
I have ALWAYS enjoyed dropping into Ruby´s Diner for a reliable food service experience. I have read a few of the negative reviews and positively cannot relate to them. I was Very disappoited when Ruby´s left Paseo Nuevo months ago and was Delighted when they finally returned. Ruby´s is the perfect before-show or after-show restuarant to grab a bite and enjoy your experience at the same time. GIVE THEM A TRY !

So-So, 8/10/2003
Reviewer: Jacob
The place is alright. The service is good, and the uniforms are cool, but its a typical 50´s diner you can find in any other cow town. The fries are extra, and thats a disgrace to any decent burger establishment. But the shakes are great.

FUN RESTURANT!, 6/16/2003

has a fun atmosphere and great food!!!

Ruby´s Diner Rating, 2/20/2003
Reviewer: andreea from Seattle, WA
The food was delicious and the service was great. I don´t think I could´ve asked for anything more in a diner.

Terrible service, incompetent employees, expensive food, 11/14/2002

I experienced the worst service at Ruby´s diner. After waiting 20 minutes for someone to come take our drink order, my friends and I decided to leave. Only until we stood next to our table did a waitress notice and her explanation was "Oh, we´re just getting it together now!" When the manager came over it was even worse. She is an absolute airhead and after knowing that we are completely unhappy w/ their service she said, "Oh, really? I´m sorry. We can take care of you now." and looked completely shocked. I will never give Ruby´s diner my money again and I suggest you do the same.

Just Okay, 8/5/2002
Reviewer: MahaLo LoVes You from Santa Barbara, CA
I went to Ruby´s just to try something new. The hamburgers are indeed pricey but I found their shakes to be wonderful. Just go to Fatburger on State Street and you´ll be saving a lot of money. But it´s definitely a place where you go just once to fulfill your hamburger appetite.

kind of pricy for the 50´s, 4/11/2002

while the food is fine, and the shakes are great, you´re going to pay for your burger through the teeth ... oh, and fries cost extra. perhaps you should stick to this place for dessert only

Have you eaten here? Write a review of this location!  Terms of Service