Santa Barbara > Restaurants > Rodney's Grill at the Hilton
Neighbor Tims BBQ

Rodney's Grill at the Hilton
No longer in business
Opened: ? Closed: 2019-01

633 E. Cabrillo Blvd, Santa Barbara
Phone: (805) 884-8554

Reviews by the General Public

a bad taste left, 1/19/2012
Reviewer: Lori G from Santa Barbara, CA
We went to Rodney's on Monday to celebrate my husband's birthday. What a disappointing expereince. The waiter paid little attention to our table (there was only one other couple in the restaurant at the time). The ribeye steaks were tough, luke warm, no steak knives were offered, the sides were luke warm and the bernaise sauce was cold with the consistency of pudding. We had to get up from the table to search for our waiter in order to pay the bill. Don't waste your time.

Same, 12/8/2011
Reviewer: Charlotte from Goleta
I had the SAME experience! Horrible food and staff hides while you eat!

Don't waste your money or time, 12/7/2011
Reviewer: Debra Belicove from Santa Clarita, CA
My husband and I had dinner at Rodney's expecting a fabulous meal. Great dissapointment! My prime rib looked and tasted like it had been cooked days earlier and then reheated. My husband's rib-eye was terrible. There was no seer on either side and the meat had no flavor. The servers even knew the food was unacceptable because they never approached us during dinner and asked how our meal was. With the prices they charge one would expect a wonderful meal. We'll never return and most certainly would not recommend this restaurant!!

Great Birthday Dinner, 4/14/2010
Reviewer: Chris from Marina Del Rey, CA
In SB recently (3/10) for my husband's bday celebration. Dined at Rodney's on a friend's recommendation and were not disappointed. From the appetizers and wine, to our delicious NY Strip steak cooked a perfect medium rare and buttery local caught halibut, it was a wonderful meal. Wait staff were pleasant and service was great. A really enjoyable evening, worth the $$ for special occasion. Would recommend.

Great Ribeyes, 4/13/2010
Reviewer: Steve from San Pedro, CA
My wife and I shared a delightful dinner at Rodney's during a weekend getaway. The Ribeyes were cooked to perfection: medium rare for me preserving all the flavor; and medium well for my wife with the just right amount of pink center. The service was impeccable, and we enjoyed the atmosphere very much. We look forward to dining here on our next visit to Santa Barbara.

Huge Disappointment, 12/26/2009
Reviewer: Stefan Schauffele from San Diego, CA
It was disappointing and pricey. Very ambitious with apparent lack of skill! I went with a party of 4 to dine at Rodney's on the 25th of December. We made the reservation a couple of days earlier, at which time nobody told us that it was to be a menu prix fixe for the 25th. So, out the door with my plans of a New York Strip "bleu charre". There was an amuse bouche, 2 courses and desert. about 5 choices for the 2 courses and 3 for the desert. my duck confit for the first choice was acceptable although only warm , the second plate however was a disaster. The California Pheasant was darn near disgusting. It was cold, dry as paper and had no flavor whatsoever. For desert warm berries with rhubarb crumble. This one I had the server bring me another dish. they were both unacceptable. I am certain they were preprepared then reheated and as a result bone dry and hard. In the end we walked out of there with a US$ 400.00 + tag and felt like we got robbed. Beware! Rodney's should stick to Steaks only!

The best Christmas Eve dinner, 12/25/2008
Reviewer: Meridith from Santa Barbara, CA
Was taken to Rodney's for Christmas Eve by dear friends. The food was excellent, awesome drinks, perfect service. Highly recommend this place for special occasions!

overpriced inedible food, 8/29/2008
Reviewer: Jay from Santa Barbara, CA
I have never written a review like this before. But my experience at Rodney's has inspired me to write this one. While the decor and service was satisfactory, the food was a tremendous disappointment. The $65 Kobe beef was dry and tasteless. We ordered ours medium rare and it came to us medium. Honestly, I have grilled better top sirloin myself! The shrimp appetizer was the worst I have ever attempted to eat, and I have sampled many. It was still frozen in some cases, and in others it was thawed, but freezer-burned! The sauce was good. The spinach and mashed potato sides were pretty good, but not as good as the typical person could cook at home as they lacked more than minimal flavors. All in all, a 3 person, more than $300 meal was a huge disappointment. Had we not had a guest with us, I would have been tempted to not even pay for the the meal--that's how bad it was, and I have never sent anything back to the kitchen in my life! Luckily, we found a fine restaurant in SB the next day to wash away our nightmarish experience at Rodney's. Try Cafe Buenos Aires on State Steet. It is first rate in every respect!

Sublime, 7/31/2008
Reviewer: Danae Ochsmann from Northridge, CA
My husband and I travel quite a bit for business and we are always looking for the great "locals" spots for real food - not stuffy and overpriced and to our delight Rodney's fit us like a glove! We ate at the bar (we like that) and were given fantastic service just as if at a table - plus the extra conversation with our very attentive and knowledgeable bar tender. The lobster was like sugar and the steak like butter. We will eat here again & again.

Always a pleasure, 2/22/2008
Reviewer: Erica from Palo Alto
I used to live in SB and frequent this great steakhouse. Now whenever I come back it is one of the places I have to go. The steaks are tender and flavorful, I especially like the filet. I also am a big fan of all the sauces, their bearnaise is silky and smooth. The service is spot on and very friendly. Last time I went there it was pretty empty, I can't figure out why this place is not packed every night, but I do enjoy the quiet ambiance and feeling that I know something that other don't.

We come regularly, 1/9/2008
Reviewer: Bob and Nancy from Santa Barbara CA
The food is good with the exception of the lobster which I have tried twice and found it tough and tasteless both times. Steaks are good, crab cakes and salmon are even better. Locals get a discount on Thursday night but any night has never been crowded or rushed. The service is just right and the wine list is more than adequate. It is easy to forget you are in a large convention hotel dining room.

no zagat award from me!, 6/8/2007
Reviewer: Foodie Dan from santa barbara
Came here for my wifes 40th.The atmosphere is inviting with warm yellows and beiges. We were greeted by our server and ordered a bottle of wine. We tried the chrimp coctail and the escargot. The shrimp were fine but the escargot were over done and tough. For the entree I ordered the surf and turf and my wife had the shrimp scampi. My fillet cam out rare (wanted medium) and the lobster was beutiful but tough and not very sweet. My wifes shrimp were so overdone they were barely edible. at one point in the evening we both looked up and there was no one on the floor. I mean even the bartender was gone! No one returned to the floor for a full five minutes! Just a dissapointing meal.

Best Birthday Dinner!, 11/16/2006
Reviewer: Jane Brayton from Big Bear Lake, CA
First time visitor. I had planned this for my mothers 70th birthday and she was blown away as well as the other 12 people in our group! A week later, everyone is still commenting on the wonderful service and "the best steak I ever had" The very special evening was put together by Jean-Paul and I appreciate everything he did for us including the beautiful cake. We had 3 servers waiting on us and they took very good care of us. Everything turned out to be more than I expected.

Unparalleled!, 7/12/2006
Reviewer: sema krikunova from los angeles, ca
My boyfriend and I went here for our 3 year anniversary. We ate a little early (5:30), because we had somewhere to be after, so we were the only ones in the restaurant for most of our meal. It was amazing. The food was great, I recommend the CRABCAKES! and the service was spectacular. Maybe it was because we were the only ones there but we were truly treated like royalty. I definately recommend Rodney's!!.

Great Place to eat , 5/14/2006
Reviewer: Ricky from SAnta Barbara
I like this resteraunt. The people are nice and the food is exceptional. The atmosphere is good. The service is usually reaaly good. I go here often and I enjoy it every time. You should go, it is definatly worth it.

Nice Birthday Experience, 3/3/2006
Reviewer: Adelaide from Burbank, CA
Went for my husband's birthday, as he is a lover of both great steaks and good wine. Overall, a lovely experience. Unfortunately, both wine and steak were problematic. No sommelier on premises (surprising) and NO ONE could answer any questions about the wines. My husband's steak, ordered medium rare, was served almost raw and had to be sent back; the flavor was only mediocre. However, my salmon was completely delicious, and both side veggies were marvelous, as were our salads. SERVICE WAS SPECTACULAR. Our waiter was attentive but not intrusive, and we felt quite pampered. Double-chocolate mousse was a divine dessert. (Sorry, but steaks are better at Ruth's Chris.) Would return, but not for steak.

OK food, Good Service...WAY OVERPRICED!!!!, 1/3/2006
Reviewer: Carl from Valencia, CA
We were there on New Year's Eve. To be completely honest and to put it very simply, this place has fairly good food, but is way overpriced. It was easily forgettable, unfortunately the bill was not. We paid $120 for a glass of cheap wine ($7), one not-so-good appetizer ceasar salad ($6), and our two entrees: Stuffed lobster (too "oniony" for out tatse and the special: 8oz. filet (very good) and half a stuffed lobster (stuffed differently than the other and much better!)-$55. No dessert or beverages other than my cheap glass of wine. We're used to the glutony of Nic + Stef's in L.A., where you get exceptional food (and far more of it!) for less. Even Arnie Morton's, which is very pricey, is a better deal. I LIKE TO GET WHAT I PAY FOR!

Enjoyed the Restaurant !, 12/23/2005
Reviewer: Kathy from Orange, CA.
My husband and I have eaten at Rodneys several times and never had a bad experience. The service has always been good and the food is always delicious.

Overpriced, underwhelmed!, 6/17/2005
Reviewer: Dana Alexander from Santa Barbara
A truly mediocre meal at a very high price. The spinich salad had no distinct flavor at all with a runny dressing that seemed more like water than anything else. The asparagus had a sauce which I assume was hollandaise, which was cold, gooey and tasteless. The dessert had chocolate mousse on the bottom, some kind of gelatinous layer after that and some whipped cream on top -- very bland and unexceptional. The baked potato had some sour cream with chives that came with it that gave it an odd chemical flavor. The steak was fine and the service good, but overall a very disappinting dining experience.

great experience, 4/14/2004

good steaks, excellent service, elegant atmosphere. highly recommended.

Mediocre Dining at an Extraordinary Price, 3/9/2004

I should have gotten a clue from the few number of people dining there on a Saturday night. The atmosphere is OK...the service just passable...the steaks overpriced. The meat designation as Prime questionable.

Go somewhere else, 3/7/2004

First and last time at Rodney´s...steaks overcooked, mediocre service (the waitress was nice enough but did not know how to open a bottle of wine and ended up pushing the cork through into the bottle with her finger), no one asked how our meal was, everything is ala carte and overpriced. On the bright side, one side dish of veggies or mashed potatos feeds 4.

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