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Carlitos Cafe y Cantina

1324 State St, Ste A, Santa Barbara, CA 93101-8720
805-962-7117
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Ranked #57 of 428 restaurants in Santa Barbara
Certificate of Excellence 2013
Price range: $20 - $35
Cuisines: Mexican
Good for: Families with children, Romance, Outdoor seating
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Romance, Outdoor seating
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
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191 reviews from our community

76% Recommend
    84
    62
    26
    14
    5
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Little Rock, AR
Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
70 helpful votes 70 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 14, 2014 NEW

The service was extremely slow. We had to keep making multiple requests for our order to be taken, refills, etc. Since we were visiting Santa Barbara via cruise ship, we opted to split a dish as to avoid leftovers. We ordered the combination fajitas. We were NOT told that there is a $7.95 charge for sharing nor did we see... More

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Cordova
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 9, 2014 credit card Amex Card Member Review

Average to mediocre food quality. Service average. Recommend sharing appetizer and saving dinner for elsewhere.

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Davis, California
Top Contributor
169 reviews 169 reviews
86 restaurant reviews
130 helpful votes 130 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 4, 2014

We enjoyed Sunday lunch at Carlitos' just because it appealed to us while walking by. We ordered Guacamole, Enchiladas Vedura and Combination Fajitas, which took advantage of fresh ingredients and--in our case--was not swimming in cheese. Everything was really good and the Guacamole's portions so generous that we couldn't quite finish it all. A lovely guitarist/singer performed during our meal,... More

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Berlin, Germany
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 23, 2014

Our receptionist at The Presidio recommended the place and we indeed liked it. The food was above average, prices were reasonable, staff was friendly and very alert. The atmosphere in their patio section was great and very romantic. We recommend checking it out while you're in town.

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Grande Prairie
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
35 restaurant reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2014

we were advised this was great...it was average at best, no surprises on menu, no exceptional prestnation, no exceptional service, simply get em in fill em up and get em out...portions were huge and done so to make up for lack of quality. everything was drowned in cheese, sour cream and onions...no light touch in this kitchen. There is a... More

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San Francisco, California
Top Contributor
91 reviews 91 reviews
54 restaurant reviews
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2014

Convenient location, and you will pay for that. Mediocre food, and watery expensive drinks. This place came recommended, so we tried it twice (just in case our first experience was a "fluke"). Nope. There are MANY other good Mexican restaurants in Santa Barbara and Goleta to try! Skip this one!

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Fort Collins, Colorado
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2014

Very nice ambiance with flamenco guitarist Very nice experience , great food too Perfect downtown location

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Laguna Niguel, California, United States
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 1, 2014

If you are looking for great Mexican food and in big portions, then you will want to find Carlitos. I was thoroughly impressed with the quality of the food and the portions. You will not leave hungry, unless you choose to leave hungry. We had a table of 11, kid's and friends, and everything came out on time, together and... More

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Woodland Hills, CA
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 26, 2013

Upscale Mexican food. Great selection of traditional Mexican food fare. Good Margaritas. I especially like to eat outdoors when the weather is warm and sunny and enjoy the evenings or afternoons when they have live music. It is a good place to go before hitting a concert at the Santa Barbara Bowl in summer (but go early so you don't... More

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Los Angeles
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 25, 2013

We arrived to Santa Barbara and drove straight to Carlitos where we had had lunch three years before at the same time of the year.. We were not disappointed . We found parking at the door and were lucky to be seated immediately. From the tempting menu we selected the chicken mole tacos and were very happy with our choice.... More

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