Belated First Impressions of Rory’s Place

••• Before Rory’s Place opened, I probably wrote about the Ojai restaurant more than anyone else—so I’m embarrassed to admit that I never got around to going, despite hearing good reports. (It’s only open for dinner.) Then one of Santa Barbara’s best chefs called Rory’s “a total gem” and said it was “my favorite meal I’ve had in the area in years.” Well, that did it. The food was indeed excellent; we particularly enjoyed the celery fizz cocktail, cucumber salad, herb salad, tuna tartare tartine, and the pork chop. (And the top-notch fries! At first I was a little peeved that they came out on their own, but then I decided it was more important that they were hot and crispy.) The dining room is loud, so if that’s a concern, reserve a table on the broad back terrace. And you might want to dress: the crowd was unlike any you see in Santa Barbara; it was as if a convention of L.A. gallerists was in town. There was edgy eye makeup, there was a patron clearly recovering from a facelift, and—in a first for me—there was the guy next to us, who BYO-ed a tablecloth and vase of flowers.

••• According to the Historic Landmarks Commission’s August 16 consent agenda, Captain Fatty’s Brewery is planning on a “proposed serving area [to] include 700 square feet of patio space with the addition of a trailer used to serve beer produced by Captain Fatty’s Brewery and non alcoholic beverages. This will be a temporary patio space for four months, in accordance with our lease signed with Paseo Nuevo Shopping Center.”

••• SB Sunshine Cafe on Upper State is expanding to Goleta, with a location in what was most recently Chicken in a Barrel. —Restaurant Guy

••• The Black Sheep is dipping a toe into brunch service with a “crepe and Dutch baby pancake pop up” with bottomless mimosas on Sunday, August 27. Reservations are recommended but walk-ins are welcome.

••• Gluten-free meal-delivery service Kooshi Gourmet has added Santa Barbara to its distribution zones (along with L.A., San Diego, and San Francisco).

••• S. reports that Mollie Ahlstrand‘s market/deli in Carpinteria (in the same strip mall as the Food Liaison) has opened. I’ll go check it out soon.

••• The Independent profiles Taqueria La Unica.

••• The gents behind the ONEderChild shop in Solvang have opened a cute candy shop in the windmill next door. It’s called Four Little Gummies, which seems a little ripe for confusion….


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One Comment


I saw the construction at OnederChild- its never open- so hopefully they can hire help and be open for business more than 2 days a week, and hopefully the new help has a broom & window cleaner (hint hint). I send so many folks over there, only to have them return disappointed- it looks closed. Maybe hang some fresh flags?