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1305 State St, Santa Barbara, CA 93101-2609
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Ranked #6 of 440 restaurants in Santa Barbara
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Price range: $28 - $80
Cuisines: French, Seafood, Contemporary, Californian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Local cuisine, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Victoria
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211 reviews from our community

89% Recommend
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
san francisco
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014 NEW

The service was very attentive. We enjoyed the food. The salad and soup was very nice. The tuna was nicely seared. The cheese course was diverse and very tasty. The creme brûlée was delicious and was served with a shortbread cookie. Excellent restaurant to visit.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Clearwater, Florida
Top Contributor
107 reviews 107 reviews
48 restaurant reviews
70 helpful votes 70 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2014 NEW

Downey's is fantastic. The restaurant itself is small and unassuming, in downtown Santa Barbara. The wait staff works as a team, so you will have a variety of people ensuring your enjoyment during your evening. We ordered a salad course, which was Dungeness crab and papaya. Not something we imagined together, but it was amazingly flavorful. For main courses, we... More

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Dublin, Ireland
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 18, 2014

Tonight we dined in this restaurant on State Street Santa Barbara to celebrate my husband's birthday. The staff, the food and the ambience were excellent. The desert was probably the best we have ever had. We will be back before we leave Santa Barbara. Judy O'B

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Memphis, Tennessee
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 9, 2014

can't say one negative thing about this restaurant. service, food, atmosphere, everything was great. my wife and i have been fortunate enough to have dined at some of the best restaurants in the world and this one makes our top five.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Fort Myers, Florida
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 26, 2014

Loved this restaurant! Everything was perfect! Chef Downey boasts farm to table freshness and you can tell. And .... your dinner is served hot. Be sure to try dessert. Best part of the meal!

Was this review helpful? Yes 3
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2014

With our son at UCSB, my husband and I have been visiting SB on and off for years. We typically eat one meal at Brophy Brothers which we love, but struggled to find one on the higher end that we thought had both great food and atmosphere. For a few years we settled in on Elements which we really like,... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 3
Santa Barbara, California
Top Contributor
108 reviews 108 reviews
70 restaurant reviews
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2014

My wife and I made our annual visit to Downey's Restaurant on our 15th wedding anniversary. During this entire span of time the restaurant's quality of food, wine list, service and atmosphere has remained at the highest level of any restaurant in Santa Barbara. The owner/chef John Downey uses fresh local ingredients. His menu changes a little, but he keeps... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Thousand Oaks, California
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
30 restaurant reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2014

My HH and I went to the Summer Celebration dinner in August. The two kinds of chilled tomato soup served side by side in the same bowl was delightful as were the scallops. The beef tenderloin was cooked perfectly. We had the wine pairing that was spot on. My LD and I went for dinner in September. I had the... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 12, 2014

After spending 4 weeks touring,and a week on a cruise ship to Alaska,it was a pleasure to enjoy fine food,presented so enticing,by such helpful staff,every course was a delight,(and we did have every course)I wasn't going to have dessert, but could not resist the array of mouth watering sweets on the trolly.Forgot to mention, the bread was real bread, and... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 3
Santa Barbara CA
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2014

I live in Santa Barbara and i am a foodie and this is your number one option. There really is only one drawback to Downey's which is they don't change their menu very much. That makes eating there for residents like me a little more challenging than for travelers. The food is California cuisine with a slight french overtone...lots of... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1

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