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“Could be a lot better”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of Le Stella Cafe

Le Stella Cafe
Ranked #153 of 528 Restaurants in Santa Barbara
Cuisines: American, Bar, French
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Large groups, Business meetings, Families with children, Kids
Dining options: Lunch, Breakfast, Dinner, Brunch, Full Bar, Outdoor Seating, Parking Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Santa Barbara, California
Level Contributor
10 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Could be a lot better”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 15, 2013 via mobile

The food was pretty good, especially the veggie burger! I also tried one of their French infused dishes and was not impressed. I really like the building and there is a nice outside area also. Unfortunately, the service really killed it. It was definitely the worst I ever had. It took them forever to take our order (we had to find someone after waiting at least 15 min) they kept forgetting our drinks, did not check up on us or refill are waters and we had to ask for the check. We were there a total of at least 2 hrs...

  • Visited May 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Tyler N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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101 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    30
    41
    16
    5
    9
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
San Luis Obispo, California
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“UPDATE TO JANUARY 2013 REVIEW”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 8, 2013

i am very disappointed that La Stella Cafe never answered emails (starting March 18) or returned phone calls (even left a message for the general manager) to my inquiry as to gluten free items on their menus. So, we will NOT be eating there this coming weekend, as we are traveling with a couple that must eat gluten free. This is the first time I have been totally ignored by a restaurant. Are they just too busy to reply; think they don't need the business of the large number of people who are gluten free; too disorganized; or just plain rude?

  • Visited January 2013
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank rydleedog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Saratoga, CA
Level Contributor
31 reviews
19 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Good Variety, Convenient Location, Limited Parking”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 26, 2013

Third dinner visit from out of town. I always seem to select the grilled salmon with mixed greens, which is fresh and delicious. Also, loved the french fries and tried my friend's sweet potato fries, which were yummy! Not really French food, but American cafe style. Girls loved their mac 'n cheese and ravioli. I'll need to try something else next time. Wine list is not impressive, but adequate for the type of establishment. Wait staff was attentive, hostess not so (needs more training?). Ambiance is casually "homey." Can become very noisy, and seating is hard. Plenty of space between tables though. Will need to try the outdoor patio when the weather is warmer. Beware the parking seems adequate, but during busy times you need to wait for something to open. Never checked for street parking. Not our first choice when in town, but my SB friend loves it, as it is convenient with a variety of menu selections.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank JTM_Saratoga
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Santa Barbara, California
Level Contributor
15 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Dinner yes - BREAKFAST NO!!!”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 22, 2013

I've enjoyed this restaurant for dinner, but had breakfast there yesterday. Seems from other reviews that breakfast is not their strong suit - it was terrible and I let the server know. And breakfast is the easiest meal to get right! Eggs overcooked, ham overly salty, croissant dry, order not correct, and on and on. Server's response was "sorry" and a giggle, and that we should try them for lunch or dinner. Not an acceptable answer!

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank youemailme
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Santa BArbara
Level Contributor
94 reviews
37 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
“Good food but service is always off”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 8, 2013

I have been to this restaurant probably 10-12 times since it opened for breakfast, lunch, dinner, with kids, girls night out, and a baby shower at all times of the day and week. Every single time there was a service issue of one kind of another, including a couple of nights ago when it took over 2 hours to eat (with kids ugh). Examples include the waiter never bringing my cocktail until my dinner was served, even though the restaurant had only 4 tables full, having to chase down the bartender who was busily chatting with her friends in order to close out my bill and go to my table, and waiting 20 minutes for the waiter to bring my kids' pop top McConnell's ice cream dessert on a busy night. The food is creative and good enough, although I think the specials are way overpriced and breakfast and some other items are "off" for different reasons. But the food is different than what you find in other SB restaurants and I guess that is why this place is so popular. It fills a niche in our neighborhood which is lacking good restaurants. I wish I could go more often, I do like the atmosphere and the Coq au Vin, but I don't go often, because each time I have this poor service experience. I have to wait for enough time to go by, then I forget, return, am disappointed and tell myself I will not go again. If you have time to wait and linger and don't mind slow or uncoordinated service, you will like this place. PS. When it is busy parking is a nightmare.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank finbarsmom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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