Meal prepared as requested
Meal prepared as requested with excellent flavor. Service was excellent and friendly. Value for money was excellent. No regrets and will definitely return. The only concern is the menu is limited, but developed around what is in season. None of the appetizers apealed to me, but several of the entrees did as well as several deserts.
4/5/2013 4:00:00 PM
We loved our experience!!
We loved our experience!! The food was amazing! The chef has a special touch with his dishes! We reccommend it highly.
4/6/2013 4:00:00 PM
The waitress argued with us
The waitress argued with us when we noted that the temperature of the wine was too high. Then she neglected to bring us the red wine we had ordered. Hence the Fair rating.
4/12/2013 4:00:00 PM
As usual, the food was fantastic!!
As usual, the food was fantastic!! Pork Bellies are a must! Best food in all of Santa Barbara! Oh, and service ROCKS!
4/12/2013 4:00:00 PM
Wonderful food and atmosphere
Wonderful dinner. Had venison and it was tender and flavorful. My wife had beef tenderloin and it melted in your mouth. Great place for any occasion.
4/20/2013 4:00:00 PM
Very small restaurant with a delicious menu. Romantic dining while in wine country. The hamachi appetizer melts in your mouth.
5/2/2013 4:00:00 PM
Southern Wine Country Gourmet
A great place in the heart of the Santa Ynez Wine region near Santa Barbara. In the heart of a tiny town (Ballard, CA), but near more touristy Solvang and Los Olivos. Beautiful old inn setting, and classic small, cozy dining room. Food was excellent, and interesting with a Eastern/Western fusion -- e.g. Rack of Lamb on Edamame puree with asparagus. It's the best restaurant in the Santa Ynez/Solvang area. Great service and very good wine list with a good balance of many local wines, as well as wines from northern Cal and Europe. Service was also very good.
5/14/2013 4:00:00 PM
Beautiful Ballard Inn
After a week of biking in and around Los Olivos and Solvang it was a wonderful treat to have dinner at the Ballard Inn. The setting is quite lovely and the staff was outstanding with an attentive and helpful attitude. The meals were across the board above average and several were signature dishes indeed. Anytime we visit the Los Olivos area the Ballard Inn is on our list for dinner.
5/16/2013 12:00:00 AM
We celebrated our 38 wedding anniversary. The service was wonderful, the restaurant is small and intimate. The food was melt in your mouth delicious. Next time we will save room for dessert!
5/23/2013 4:00:00 PM
Awesome food. Service.......
There's no question Budi Kazali is one of the top chefs in the area. We've eaten here many times, and our recent dinner was outstanding once again. Innovative flavor combinations, perfect preparation and great presentation. The setting is also very nice - quiet if you're on the patio. The wine list is also tops - not huge, but they carry the right wines from the right producers to make it almost a "can't miss" affair.
Our only beef here is with the service. There's no one thing that's terribly bad, but small missteps throughout the evening all add up and take away from what would otherwise be a superb dining experience.
Still a strong "recommend" if you're into great food and can stand a little sloppiness with the service.
5/25/2013 4:00:00 PM
We really enjoyed the dinner. Rack of lamb wonderful so was sashimi even ceaser salad was great . Would definitly go back
5/31/2013 4:00:00 PM
Everything about the night was great. The food was amazing. Make sure you try the pork belly. We will be heading back for our next special occasion.
6/4/2013 4:00:00 PM
Dinner for 3 to celebrate a birthday. Included salads, main dishes, and desert. Outstanding flavors. Fresh food. Friendly service. Chef stopped by table to inquire on meals. Small restaurant so make reservations.
6/8/2013 12:00:00 AM
Wonderful setting with both indoor and porch seating. Not a lot of tables which feels i timate but not stuffy. Wonderful cuisine. 3of us split the octopus ceviche. This would not be something we would ordinarily choose but the server was so enthusiastic we gave it a try and weren't disappointed. Our entrees were all perfect and beautifully presented-beef, duck and black cod. The creme brule was outstanding-silky smooth! We would definitely go back!
6/8/2013 12:00:00 AM
Lovely setting and superb
Lovely setting and superb food. Such an enjoyable evening!
6/12/2013 4:00:00 PM
Food was amazing (try the sashimi) and service was great. Would highly recommend it!
6/19/2013 4:00:00 PM
Lovely Romantic Spot
The restaurant at the Ballard Inn is a charming - like dining in someone's home. The food was excellent and the atmosphere quiet, but not stuffy or formal. A wonderful place for a special occasion or good conversation over a long leisurely meal.
6/22/2013 12:00:00 AM
Wonderful food...nice staff...world class...sparkled to impress an important out-of-town guest...
6/26/2013 4:00:00 PM
Perfect in every way
I was looking for a dining experience to celebrate our anniversary. I was looking for elegant without being stuffy, and wanted it to have the peaceful feeling of the Santa Ynez valley wine country. The Ballard Inn was perfect in every way. The food was excellent and the service was extraordinary.
6/29/2013 12:00:00 AM
Very talented, yet humble chef who personally greeted us after the meal.
6/30/2013 12:00:00 AM
An exceptional dining experience.
An exceptional dining experience. We Asher the chef select the wine to accompany
Each course. It was fantastic and we got to try wines we might
not have selected. The service was attentive, but
not obtrusive. A definite must try!!
6/30/2013 12:00:00 AM
Personally served by the chef!!!
For dinner, I had: Pan Roasted local Black Cod with Coconut Rice & Coconut Tamarind Broth with Shrimp Salad ($31) and a glass of the Rusack chardonnay. I have never tasted fish so fresh, smooth, and soft in my entire life!!!! The tamarind sauce's tangy taste is a perfect compliment to the black cod. The shrimp salad consisting of medium shrimp and julienned nappa cabbage has its own citrus dressing, which pairs very well with the very subtle tastes of shrimp and cabbage. I don't care too much for coconut rice; for this one, I didn't like the creamy touch to the rice....owing to the coconut milk. I did enjoy my chardonnay, with its mild flavors and delicate bouquet. It paired very well with my dish. About 10 mins wait for my table.
7/4/2013 4:00:00 PM
The food here is outstanding. Many of the locals in the tasting rooms we visited said it is the best in the valley. It is located in a beautiful inn, with only about 15 tables. Crowd the night we were there was light and many were seniors, but we still had a nice time. Definitely will go back.
7/10/2013 12:00:00 AM
Summertime on the Veranda
Budi put out another great dinner! Have been going here over 10 years and the food continues to grow and improve with the times. Octopus salad was exceptional. My filet was prepared to order and had a nice presentation. Cheese plate was solid. Think wine prices are fair. Servers are friendly and efficient. Wish Budi was in Montecito so we didn't have to drive so far!
If you haven't watched "The Inn Crowd", it's enjoyable.........our daughter in Pasadena requires us to DVR every episode for them!
7/10/2013 12:00:00 AM
food was fabulous. One of
food was fabulous. One of the best restaurants in Santa Barbara!
7/19/2013 12:00:00 AM
A Memorable Meal
At the suggestion of our server, we had the two Hamachi and pork belly appetizers, both of which were delicious. The duck main course was equally amazing. The chocolate cake with salted ice cream for dessert was good, but not fantastic.
I can't believe I have never been here before. It won't be long until I am back, makes a real nice night combined with a play in Solvang in their outdoor theatre!
7/26/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great place for a fine meal
We had stayed at the Inn several years ago and I wanted to have a great meal there again for my wife's birthday. It didn't disappoint. The Inn is located in a relaxed rural setting and is a wonderful place to enjoy fine dining. It is a bit more expensive but well worth it for the service and the food.
8/3/2013 12:00:00 AM
Dining experience always lives
Dining experience always lives up to its expectations. Consistently delicious.
8/8/2013 12:00:00 AM
This restaurant well deserves the five star rating! I find myself returning quite a number of times. A place of true class.
8/9/2013 12:00:00 AM
The food is fantastic. This restaurant lives up to its reputation of having great food. We had a wonderful evening there.
8/17/2013 12:00:00 AM
Quite an enjoyable experience with attentive service, a discernably informed wine list and chef Budi's creations. The dishes are uniquely satisfying. We appreciate this even more in the country elegance of the room, a lovely setting for a special meal.
8/17/2013 12:00:00 AM
Good But Not Overwelmingly So.
We were staying at the Ballard Inn so felt obligated to try their restaurant. The owner of the inn is the chef. He has a background in Asian fusion and that was obvious here. Swordfish on a bed of pineapple rice with pea pods. My wife had a duck breast with cherry reduction sauce. Where I felt like the restaurant, universally loved, felt short was in service. My personal preference is that the server enjoy the experience, even if it is her job. Our server was an order taker. Very attractive with no personality. Someone else fills the water glasses, brings out the dishes and busses the dishes. It was as if her only job was to look pretty (which she did). But when I ask what she would recommend , don't tell me "everything is good here."
8/18/2013 12:00:00 AM
We enjoyed our dinner at the
We enjoyed our dinner at the Ballard Inn very much. The food was delicious, good service and a lovely atmosphere. I would recommend dinner at the Ballard Inn to anyone visitng the area.
8/28/2013 12:00:00 AM
We got so many recommendations for this place we absolutely had to try it and we were not disappointed. We started with two soups the corn fritter and tomato miso. Both were great. Since we had spent the day wine tasting we were a bit full and decided to share our entree which you can do for a small charge of $5. We tried the black cod and it was just divine. We wish we had room for dessert but alas we did not.
8/31/2013 12:00:00 AM
A Delightful Experience
The Ballard Inn was a marvelous experience. Exceptional food, amazing service, albeit a bit noisy. Wonderful menu choices. The Chef personally visited each table and shared his culinary techniques if asked. A memorable evening.
9/4/2013 12:00:00 AM
Complete wine country experience
The complete Santa Ynez wine country experience is not had without enjoying some of the excellent local wines in conjunction with phenomenal unique meals of the local produce and cuisine, prepared by a talented chef. The Restaurant at The Ballard Inn provides that complete and unforgettable experience. Each course was excellent. Enjoyed the corn soup, hamachi and braised pork belly as starters, and black cod and duck as entrees. Eager to dine there again, and try more of the chef’s creations. The atmosphere of the restaurant, in keeping with the region, is quaint and unpretentious and warm, yet refined.
9/7/2013 12:00:00 AM
Excellent food, odd service
My wife and I truly enjoyed our experience at The Restaurant at The Ballard Inn. The pork belly and hamachi sashimi were excellent starters, and our entrees of rack of lamb and black cod were cooked to perfection. We sat on the porch in the evening, where heat lamps kept us warm but the staff also provided blankets to wrap ourselves in as well. The chef visited and chatted with us, keeping a friendly intimate vibe to our dinner.
The only only improvement imaginable would be to their service, which wasn't bad at all, just odd. While our main server was very attentive, some of the other staff would come to our table and bring us a drink or a dish and they wouldn't say a word. Otherwise a superb meal, and we'd surely return.
9/27/2013 12:00:00 AM
Nothing bad to say
The food and the service were great. However, we were not blown away. The restaurant may be somewhat of a victim of its own hype for us. The x-factor wasn't there for us. After a week of dining out while vacationing in the Santa Ynez area, this was not the best dining experience, even among comparable restaurant and menu styles. I would still recommend it.
10/1/2013 5:00:00 PM
AMAZING Dinner for a special night!
My husband and I came to dinner at the Ballard for our 10 year anniversary. Outstanding food and service! Thank you, Ballard for making our special day wonderful!
10/2/2013 12:00:00 AM
A Special Find!
We had a lovely dinner at Ballard Inn! The servers were attentive and very pleasant, but not over the top. The food was exceptional and the presentation a work of art. The wine list was diverse but if you prefer, you can bring your own wine for a $15 corkage fee. Chef Kazali was available and took time to stop by our table with a "thank you" for visiting his restaurant and Inn. We spoke with other patrons who make the Ballard Inn an annual stop during the trips to CA. We will for sure visit Ballard Inn again and plan to take our dinner group there in November! If you are in Santa Ynez Valley, this is a must visit but be sure to make reservations since seating is limited!
10/2/2013 12:00:00 AM
That's Why It's an Award Winner
The food was excellent, service gracious, and quiet romantic restaurant. The steak was correctly prepared at medium. Now, I am pretty particular about my duck, and very few times would I take it medium rare, but the Chef rcommended it medium rare. I was very pleasantly surprised, medium rare was perfect with the sauce and rest of the plate. The service was not rushed, and we felt totally at home for the meal. The Chef coming out and talking with each table that night was a special touch, also. It's easy to see why he has been here 9 years, and being successful during this time. I checked around, and the folks said it was a local favorite. I can see why. He treats every diner as a special friend, Reservations definitely recommended.
10/2/2013 12:00:00 AM
We had had such a good time. It is good as usuall, chef is going out of his way to surprise the audience. Great!
10/11/2013 12:00:00 AM
Ballard Inn Restaurant outstanding
Every time we eat at the Ballard Inn restaurant we marvel at the outstanding food, service, and ambience. We plan our trips to stopover in Solvang/Ballard area in order to have dinner there. This week the Black Cod entree was one of the best seafood dishes we have ever had--with the asian complex flavors it was simply delicious. The hamachi and pork belly appetizers were excellent again. This restaurant is a gem---not to missed if you are in the area.
10/16/2013 12:00:00 AM
The food was amazing, service
The food was amazing, service exceptional. I would recommend the Ballard to all my friends.
10/18/2013 12:00:00 AM
Our favorite for 5 years
Asian fusion the only one of it's kind in the valley.
10/27/2013 12:00:00 AM
Ballard Inn - Good choice
Very nice restaurant in the Santa Ynez area. An excellent selection for very good food, atmosphere and excellent service.
11/2/2013 5:00:00 PM
While the decor isn't upscale, the food is out of this world. Truly outstanding and nice wine list.
11/7/2013 4:00:00 PM
I had an out of town visitor and wanted to try something more than the usual local seen. What a lovely place and amazing food. This will be my special night out location.
11/20/2013 4:00:00 PM
A wonderful place to celebrate...
Our 27th wedding anniversary. Everything was outstanding. My husband enjoyed the special - bison for dinner. Since I don't eat meat, I had two choices - local black bass or mediterranean sea bass. Since I always try to eat local, I chose the local black bass. Expertly prepared. I wasn't sure I even liked black bass, but I sure do now. The service was also outstanding. Our server was patient, helpful, prompt, friendly and very kind. We will certainly return to this wonderful restaurant in the heart of the SB wine country. Highly recommend.
11/28/2013 4:00:00 PM
As usual, (we've eaten there
As usual, (we've eaten there a number of times) everything was just great!
12/3/2013 4:00:00 PM