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  • The Deer Lodge

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The Deer Lodge
The Deer Lodge

The Deer Lodge Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.ojaideerlodge.net/
  • Phone: (805) 646-4256
  • Hours of Operation: Monday - Friday: 4:30pm -1:00am; Saturday - Sunday 10:30am - 2:00am
  • Cuisine: American, Barbecue, Burgers
  • Dress Code: Business Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes

Getting there

  • Parking: No
A word from The Deer Lodge
Legendary in Ojai since 1932, The Deer Lodge is now under new ownership as of Jan. 2, 2013 and serving great locally raised grass fed steaks and American classics made with the best of Ojai farm-sourced ingredients seven days a week. We feature a great wine list made up of Ojai and regional wines. Live music nightly.Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerHot Spot
  • Diners' Choice WinnerMost Booked
Diner Reviews
  • "Great experience! The Filet was the best steak meal I've had in many years and I've had steaks in many places. Good food in a roadhouse type atmosphere made it interesting and enjoyable. Staff was friendly and service was excellent. My wife had the veggie stir fry and said it was good too. Sampled my steak and claimed I got the better of the deal."
    Dined on 8/30/2014
  • "The Deer Lodge actually looked just like the advertisement. We sat outside on a very slow evening. The owner popped over for a chat. The waitress made good suggestions. The band was great. It was everything I hoped it would be and my guests were delighted."
    Dined on 8/18/2014
  • "Our server wasnt very attentive! The host Nate however was awesome and greeted us with such a warm welcome!! The food was just fine. Seemed like the menu, neither food or drink were up to date!! They kept saying "oh it's not on there, ask the server" or the item I wanted was blacked out with a marker. The hotel discount we received was not applied to the bill & I had to go find Brooke to make the adjustment. The busboy was cool tho tending to us for the latter part of our visit. Wish i would have had one of the guys serving us since they seemed more attentive, the gals not so much. It is a cool, rustic spot and if u don't have high expectations then it can be a cool experience!!"
    Dined on 8/17/2014
  • "The food was amazing both times we've been here... even with a massive bike crowed on a Sunday, we were well taken care of."
    Dined on 8/10/2014
  • "Fabulous, rustic atmosphere and very good food. Also, great live music. We LOVED this place and will definitely be back!"
    Dined on 8/6/2014
  • "We arrived a few minutes late, but had called ahead. Our table was near the fireplace, but not well lit. We had to use the flashlights on our phones to read the menu. The waitress was friendly and confirmed our choices were her favorites. The food was fabulous! We had a wonderful time. The environment was fun."
    Dined on 8/1/2014
  • "I've been coming to The Deer Lodge for lunch for years. This was the first time for dinner. We met friends there on a Friday night. The service was somewhat slow, and when the meals arrived were only lukewarm. I had ordered the Bison Short Ribs, I literally could barely cut them, they were extremely dried out and nearly jerky. Another person in the party ordered the Salmon, and it wasn't cooked all the way through, she ate the ends and left the uncooked center of the filet. In the end, they took my dinner off the check, as it was virtually untouched and barely edible. How there could be such a difference between lunch and dinner, is a mystery."
    Dined on 8/1/2014
  • "After reading multiple reviews on this place from Yelp I was unsure what to expect but because I wanted to see the band playing that night decided to give it a chance. I am glad we did. I sat outside for dinner and the noise level was low. The service was excellent. Food was delicious. Later we went inside to watch the band and really enjoyed ourselves. I will be back."
    Dined on 8/1/2014
  • "we were pleasantly surprised! Not only great food, but live music! Outstanding!"
    Dined on 7/21/2014
  • "Deer Lodge is wonderful! Established in the 30's, it has a rustic appeal, an amazing menu, surprising selection of vegetarian options while known for their organic meat choices. Live music in the evenings, dining outside on the patio (with the neighbors and their pets) or inside (a bit dark, but what do you expect in a lodge! :-) ) and a decent wine and beer selection. Set in the mouth of a beautiful canyon in the town of Ojai, and just off the border of the Los Padres National Forest (a spectacular scenic drive before or after the meal), it's a "MUST" visit if you're in the area, and worth the drive even if you're not!"
    Dined on 7/16/2014
  • "Atmosphere was really nice. It was a good place to hang out with friends or family. service was ok, pretty standard. we asked for bread that never came. the food was a little disappointing, especially the bison."
    Dined on 7/15/2014
  • "What a great spot. The entire evening was made by the incredible service, ambiance and great music. It was our last night in Ojai and will be a a tradition from now on."
    Dined on 7/9/2014
  • "If I could give the food 3.5 I would. Nothing was amazing, my husband liked his ribs alot but I thought my jerk chicken was odd and over citrusy. The stuffed mushrooms were one of the blandest things I have ever tasted. Desserts were good though. The whole night was made awesome by discovering the amazing Becca Fuchs though. Go on a Sunday night to see her if you can!"
    Dined on 7/6/2014
  • "loud. noisy. out of desired items early evening. waitress with attitude. food mediocre."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "The restaurant was awful; the service was non-existent and the food was horrible. Will never go there again. The place was empty, reservations were totally unnecessary. Parking was limited and backed out to a road that was dangerous."
    Dined on 6/23/2014
  • "This Restaurant is the new destination experience. With a cabin feel you sense the ambience the moment you park and smell the sage and oak trees. A mix of hippie biker and connoisseur you will not be disappointed. What really seals the deal is the amazing farm to table food. Where else in California is the menu stocked with wild game choices fit for a michellin 5 star. I highly recommend this place and would give it 6 stars if there was an extra one."
    Dined on 6/22/2014
  • "We thoroughly enjoyed our elk and filet mignon, served by Trisha, the waitress with the great attitude. The bands were so good (especially "Send Medicine") that we hung out and listened to them after dinner. A great experience overall."
    Dined on 6/6/2014
  • "W have recently moved to Santa Barbara and have taken advantage of as many Living Social offers as possible to acquaint ourselves with local restaurants. A group of 3 of us went for lunch and all ordered burgers. While the place is certainly unique in its atmosphere, the food left alot to be desired. The meat was overcooked (we all asked for medium rare and only one came out that way) and seemed unusually dry. Would be a fun place to go perhaps for a drink but probably wouldn't go back for the food."
    Dined on 5/24/2014
  • "Very disappointing experience. The food pretty much came all at the same time even thought we ordered salads to start. Got my glass of wine half way through dinner. "
    Dined on 5/23/2014
  • "Went for 24th wedding anniversary. Greeted nicely and seated quickly. Rustic furniture very uncomfortable, table wobbly, shelf next table dusty. server was nice but young and inexperienced. Had to check if wine was in stock, after awhile returned to say was not, bumped us up to higher $ wine, nice. Not very busy, but lots of time in between touches. No water served, had to ask. $10/$12 salads took long time to arrive, then less than 5 mins later main courses show up. Food was ok, but seemed warmed after sitting or something. Took long time to get check then longer to get cashed out. Owner walked by 3 or 4 times, greeted, seated regulars while we sat waiting to be cashed out, not even a hello. Perhaps good roadhouse but not WC dining..."
    Dined on 5/19/2014
  • "Been here many times and never leave disappointed. The food and service are always great."
    Dined on 5/2/2014
  • "The location is great, nice outdoor patio and live music inside. I would go there for happy hours or for a cocktail on the terrace. Food is ok, fresh and organic produce for sure, you can feel it but I was not too impressed by the dinner we had there. "
    Dined on 4/29/2014
  • "I was in Ojai for a quick over night trip. I was looking forward to hearing one of my favorite bands play... local and national sensation "Lissie". Food terrific; staff accommodating; music venue surprisingly intimate and energetic. A blast!"
    Dined on 4/25/2014
  • "We went to watch local star Lissie play a gig at The Deer Lodge. We decided to eat there ahead of the show and were totally impressed with the whole evening. The food was superb and the service excellent. Needless to say the show was incredible, so the whole evening was a total success!"
    Dined on 4/25/2014
  • "We have lived in Ventura for several years now and finally went to the lodge with friends who just moved here. Dinner was spectacular and we definitely are making plans to go back."
    Dined on 4/19/2014
  • "We had heard that the Deer Lodge had new owners and was a great place to dine. We made reservations, we seated immediately upon arrival and then went down hill from there. The appetizer was served when the main meal arrived (we had long since given up) which was an hour after we ordered. We did not even see a server to take drink orders until 30 minutes after we were seated. The wine they recommended was not available. The salads were all wrong the meal took forever and when they came to apologize they offered 2 free deserts for a party of 6. The service needs a lot of work. The main entrée when it finally came was delicious. But from start to finish it was a 4 hour meal...really? They need to send their staff to Sea Fresh to train."
    Dined on 4/19/2014
  • "This is such a fun place! The service was great, drinks were delicious....and who doesn't love onion rings? Would recommend this for anyone staying or passing through Ojai!"
    Dined on 4/12/2014
  • "Visited during mid-week for lunch. old and rustic, Liked the setting. the craft beer selection is good, the food is good as well. Had the chicken fried sandwich with blue and bacon. passed on the spicy sauce. The sandwich was a little dry, should have added mayo. regardless, still was tasty. The burger looked great and the entire party had a good time. Will certainly be back on my next visit to Ojai."
    Dined on 3/31/2014
  • "Moist, flavorful, meat, falling off the bone. Mmmmmm, I ready to go back. Our server, Daniel, along with the rest of the crew took good care of us. The sitar player and band were great!"
    Dined on 3/29/2014
  • "Very trendy lodge like restaurant in a very rural part of Ojai, CA. Has very original décor, and a live band every night. The food was good, but the service could be better. Overall you should definitely visit when in the area."
    Dined on 3/28/2014
  • "Don't miss going to this restaurant in Ojai. It's worth the trip to this little town. Best bison burger I've ever had. Husband had a cheeseburger and said it's the best he's ever had."
    Dined on 3/23/2014
  • "Although I was amused at the biker scene at noon on a Sunday, with their shots of whiskey and beer as they stood around their "bikes" I really can't call this a lovely place for dining. My dish had butter stuck to the rim of it when I didn't even have butter. The service was slow because there wasn't enough help, and our waitress tried her best. Everything just look old and neglected. It really needs a facelift. I guess at night you wouldn't see as much gunk."
    Dined on 3/23/2014
  • "We went on Sunday evening and loved the buffalo hamburger so much, we went to Deer Lodge on Monday night, the staff there is very friendly and helpful. The bands that play in evening are entertaining, not to disruptive to conversation at dinner table."
    Dined on 3/9/2014
  • "Table was ready for us. Food was good. Service was very good. Seperate checks were no problem."
    Dined on 3/6/2014
  • "this little gem is in the middle of what appears to be a residential area. The food was excellent and the service was great. Would definitely eat there again on my next trip to Ojai"
    Dined on 3/1/2014
  • "Big fan of the place. Not loving the TV sets - very distracting and makes it hard to be present, but other than that this place has a lot going for it. Customer service, great food, ambiance is priority, and I believe the owners value that as well. Thanks -- will tell friends. :)"
    Dined on 2/23/2014
  • "This is a fun spot for drinks & entertainment. Service was friendly but very slow. Food was just okay, not noteworthy except to say both of our dishes (BBQ tri tip and flat iron steak) were cold by the time we were served. We made reservations and were seated after a short wait. We were placed at a table for 4 in front of the stage. We came for dinner and did not intend to stay for the full show but because of slow service we were still at the table well after the band came on stage. We felt extremely awkward being a party of 2 taking up a prime table for 4 with people crowded around us wanting a seat who clearly came for drinks and to hear the band. As we were getting up to finally leave, folks literally pounced on the table. Yikes!"
    Dined on 2/22/2014
  • "A local party spot for food, bar room and music in Ojai. I made a dinner reservation a Saturday night because two of my favorite singers playing that night. I specially request a dinner table stage center in the music room, before making the 70 mile drive up from Los Angeles. When I arrived no table had been reserved, and a single side table was set up for me in a corner off to the side of the stage with a big speaker hiding my view of the stage. The big dinner tables in front of the music stage were reserved for bigger dining parties with no interest in the music, while one remained empty all evening. With the headline performer on at 10:30 all the tables were removed and it was a jammed, noisy standing room bar scene only. Food: mediocre."
    Dined on 2/22/2014
  • "We went to the Deer Lodge for dinner over a weekend getaway to celebrate my wife's birthday. They tried to seat us outside away from any heat lamps, so I told the host we had to have some heat lamps since it was too cold for my wife. They were very accommodating. The biggest downside was the extremely slow service, which had nothing to do with the food being cooked-to-order and lots to do with the fact there was live music that night and the place was a bit of a zoo. The food itself was very average. We got the bison ribs and the tritip as main courses, the beet salad, and the deviled duck eggs. Nothing blew us away, it was all good but not great. We won't come back, but we're glad we went for the experience and the ambiance."
    Dined on 2/22/2014
  • "The Deer Lodge was a fun place to dine, with an interesting menu and good food. Recommended for a fun evening."
    Dined on 2/22/2014