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“Good food, and group karaoke”
Review of The Palace Grill

The Palace Grill
Ranked #18 of 531 Restaurants in Santa Barbara
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $20 - $35
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions
Dining options: Late Night, Dinner, Lunch, Reservations
Description: Established in 1985, The Palace Grill is a Santa Barbara landmark restaurant featuring authentic New Orleans-inspired cuisine and a fun, lively atmosphere. Winner of The Santa Barbara's Independent Reader's Poll for "Best Restaurant Service". Located in Santa Barbara's charming Old Town district, The Palace Grill has something for everyone. Our menu features a wide range of contemporary American Grill items with a focus on authentic Southern and Louisiana specialties such as Jambalaya, Crawfish Etouffee, New Orleans Bar-B-Que Shrimp, Blackened Filet Mignon, and delicious daily "Menu Additions". In addition we have a number of exciting Caribbean dishes and a line of Creole-Italian pastas. To insure that we remain authentic, the Palace routinely flies its staff to New Orleans to experience first-hand the magical quality of the city that has inspired the spirit of the Palace Grill. The Palace has been featured in dozens of national publications including Gourmet(R) Magazine, Bon Appetit(R) and USA TODAY(R). Throughout the years, The Palace has also been a favorite of culinary legends (including chef Julia Child and chef Wolfgang Puck) and has served its cuisine to countless global dignitaries - including 5 U. S. Presidents. At the Palace Grill, everyone shares one goal: to give our guests the most extraordinary dining experience possible: every time they visit. Besides our wonderful cuisine, The Palace is known for it's unique style of "Team Service" (which the Nation's Restaurant News called "an idea whose time has come") and our nostalgic nightly staff and guest Sing-A-Long to Louis Armstrong's iconic song - "What A Wonderful World." Come join the celebration known as "The Palace Grill Experience."
San Diego, CA
Level 4 Contributor
48 reviews
26 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
“Good food, and group karaoke”
Reviewed July 25, 2013

Nice food, similar to what you'd expect in New Orleans (they even display cans & boxes of Cafe du Monde beignet mix). My wife said that the Popcron Crawfish was one of the best things she's eaten in quite a while. At intervals, they hand out a songsheet and a few minutes later they play the related song, and the staff & patrons sing along (in our case, the song was Louis Armstrong's "It's a wonderful world"). A bit hokey, maybe, but good fun.

Visited July 2013
Thank ScotProf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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544 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Norwegian first
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  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Fountain Valley, California
Level 6 Contributor
82 reviews
46 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
“Food + Fun = Five”
Reviewed July 21, 2013

If I was being completely honest, I'd say the food was a four, but because this was one of the most unique dining experiences I've ever had and the environment was so fun, it definitely made it a 5. The fun began outside the door. (We got in line and a gentleman took down our name and told us we could go shopping and come back without losing our place, so that was a good way to kill time.) When we came back in line, the Zydeco band was starting up and we got instruments to play with. It was very fun to participate in if you're not shy and you're with a fun buddy. I started my meal with The World Famous Palace Cajun Martini and wow--that was a very strong drink, so you better enjoy vodka. We got a complimentary basket full of different types of cornbread muffins and I couldn't recall which was which, but that was yummy. We started with the Cajun Crawfish Popcorn. That was just okay--probably the thing I liked least that evening. My entree was the Diver Scallops and it was amaaaaaaazing. I could not stop thinking about it the next day. Hands down, the best part of my meal and the reason I would come back. Finally, I got the Dark Chocolate Souffle cake and I was so stuffed by then, but I think it was pretty good. So cute and so fun. I think it's definitely worth going to and waiting in line for if you want something more fun than romantic.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Happy B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Santa Barbara, California
Level 4 Contributor
22 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Best place to eat, anywhere.”
Reviewed July 12, 2013 via mobile

Best restaurant we've ever been to, hands down. Not to be believed. The ambiance is wonderful, the service was incredible, you can bring kids and they have a ball (they even had a magician wandering though who was like something you'd see on TV) They toasted everyone and handed out lyrics to "what a wonderful world". What a wonderful wonderful place.

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank ElleWalters
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reno, NV
Level 5 Contributor
56 reviews
38 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“Jambalaya and Muffins”
Reviewed July 9, 2013

Wife and I shared their delicious jambalaya pasta dish. We split the large and there more than enough f food for the two of us - although I managed to eat it all. The jambalaya had plenty of spice without making you uncomfortable and overwhelming the delicious flavors.

My daughter enjoyed her chicken tenders which were freshly per

The pre-meal muffins are delicious but don't spoil your appetite for the main course.

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank jrhinomo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 5 Contributor
16 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“Awesome meals and service at The Palace”
Reviewed July 9, 2013

We loved our first dinner so much that we went back for lunch!

We were in town for a wedding and decided to take some of our family here for dinner. EVERYONE was pleased with their dinners and the service was impeccable.

First, the service:

5 of us arrived on a busy Friday night over July 4th weekend, and we had no reservations. We were asked if we had reservations, and we said no. Typically, what tends to happen is that then there is a bit of an attitude or a really long wait. The host was impeccable in his manners, and told us he would look into what he could do to accomodate us. He really said this in a lovely way, and he went out of his way to find a place for us.

Once seated, the service was fantastic. However we wanted our meals (some people wanted certain foods like mushrooms omitted, for example), they delivered with no questions. They kept mentioning they worked in a team approach, and all the staff appeared to be genuinely happy to be there, which I think sets a nice tone for the customers. The singing to "It's A Wonderful World", along with a toast, was really a nice touch - making you feel like you were a guest in someone's home, rather than a restaurant.

The food:

The crawfish pasta was to die for! Seriously. My 16 year old daughter said it was one of the best dishes she had ever had, and I agreed with her.

Other entrees we had were the soft shell crab, pasta etouffee, chicken, red beans and rice. All were given a thumbs up.

Finally, we shared the dark chocolate souffle, which needed to be ordered about 30 minutes ahead. It was delicious.

The diversity of menu items was great as well.

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank HeidiCO
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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