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  • The Hungry Cat - Santa Barbara

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The Hungry Cat - Santa Barbara
The Hungry Cat - Santa Barbara

The Hungry Cat - Santa Barbara Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.thehungrycat.com/home-1162.php?loc=sb
  • Phone: (805) 884-4701
  • Hours of Operation:

    Serving Lunch and Dinner:
    Tuesday - Thursday, 12 noon - 10 pm
    Friday 12 noon - 11 pm
    Saturday 11 am - 11 pm
    Sunday 11 am - 10 pm

    Lunch is served until 3 pm
    Brunch is served Saturday & Sunday: 11 am - 3 pm
    Raw Bar is available throughout the day
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Seafood
  • Executive Chef: David Lentz
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Beer, Counter Seating, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wine
  • Private Party Facilities: Our recently added Dining Room can be reserved for parties from 6 to 14 people. The perfect size for a small celebration, wine tasting or business lunch.

    We are also available for larger parties with advance notice. This may require a complete restaurant buyout.
  • Private Party Contact: Bob Van der Veer (805) 884-4701

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Anapamu
  • Parking: Public Lot
  • Parking Details: Street Parking is available and we are located 1/2 a block from 2 SB Public Lots. Enter off Chapala Street.
A word from The Hungry Cat - Santa Barbara
Proudly Serving Santa Barbara since 2007!

The Hungry Cat Santa Barbara retains the same focus as the Hollywood and Santa Monica Canyon locations: fresh, high quality fish paired with fresh, locally sourced ingredients from nearby farmer's markets.

Our rotating raw bar showcases Pacific and Atlantic oysters, clams, Santa Barbara sea urchin, raw and marinated fish dishes, crab and lobster.

The Bar at the Hungry Cat specializes in seasonal, market driven cocktails, craft brews and an eclectic wine list made for seafood.

We are open daily serving lunch and dinner, with brunch on the weekends.

Happy Hour is available daily from 3pm to 6pm.
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerSeafood
  • Diners' Choice WinnerFit for Foodies
  • Diners' Choice WinnerHot Spot
Diner Reviews
  • "The service is one of the best in Santa Barbara. The oysters are awesome and they have a lot of great dishes, but the crab legs were just not something I would recommend. They were not on par with the rest of the food and beverage quality there. Paying $44 for a pound leads to high expecatations and I would say they were mediocre at best. Maybe they had an off day and over-cooked them though. You never know. But everything else was delicious and wonderful."
    Dined on 8/13/2014
  • "As always the Hungry Cat met my expectations. My wife and I come here for special occasions in other words her birthday. The service and food are always exceptional. And the other night was just as good. We have never had a bad meal here."
    Dined on 8/10/2014
  • "Had the lamb and clams with an appetizer of crab and shrimp. All of it was good. The lamb and clams were new and interesting but it just wasn't great. The shrimp was dry. The ground lamb and clams mix to have kind of a strange rubbery texture. Nice atmosphere. Great waiter."
    Dined on 8/9/2014
  • "Seating is very tight. Easy to get bumped by the other diners. Sea urchin was very good."
    Dined on 8/6/2014
  • "Had a very nice lunch but thought prices were a little high. Three people, one salad, no alcohol $85 plus tip."
    Dined on 7/30/2014
  • "We came here for the ramen special on Tuesday night. I was expecting more of a classic Tonkotsu ramen, but we got more of a "Les Marchands" deconstructed ramen, which was very good but unexpected. As a pre-meal treat, we ordered littleneck clams, which were DIVINE. The waitstaff was friendly, but a bit slow, and actually forgot to give us spoons for the ramen. This was awkward, as we were sitting closest to their computer system, and they had their backs to us as we tried to get their attention for a full five minutes. The maitre d' was very friendly and asked us how the ramen was after our meal. I appreciated his candid question, and felt satisfied that my feedback had been noted. Will be back!"
    Dined on 7/22/2014
  • "Food was good but not great. Small choices of glasses of wine...they force u to by a bottle! The server was a little under attentive and not very helpful with the menu, food or drinks.........."
    Dined on 7/20/2014
  • "I was here a year ago and the food was amazing!!!! I took a friend who was visiting from Germany and talked you guys up well. Again the food again was amazing, but the service was one of the worst if not worst I have ever received, and I used to be a waiter for 3 years so I know how it is to be in the weeds. From our drink to the appetizers, and our main meal to the end. I ordered the seafood tower/platter which was a main reason I came their for the seafood, not only did she forget to order it, and delivered it AFTER we got our main course, then kept asking "if we were finished" when clearly weren't because the place was closing and she wanted to close up section and get out! I will visit your Santa Monica location, never again in SB"
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "2nd trip to Hungry Cat-the first was after a very positive review in a local paper. Ordered lobster roll with FF and got a $25.00 plate of FF-still looking for the lobster roll. I should have sent it back and left most of the diner on my plate. Any tuned in waiter would have asked if the meal was to my liking but how foolish of me-he knew the answer. My wife's ordered whole fish with a similar result- she left most on her plate. Hope they have a Hungry Cat in the kitchen to eat what she left! We don't mind pricey restaurants that deliver good quality food but this was an insult to any discerning palate."
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "Excellent restaurant - food very interesting And delicious . Definitely worth going to"
    Dined on 7/16/2014
  • "The food here was great, as always. We ordered the Pacific Gold oysters and a watermelon and tomato salad to start the meal - both delicious. Then we followed that with the New Orleans-syle lobster roll and the lamb/clams entree. The lobster roll was spot on, evoking the original but giving it a delightful twist. The lamb/clams was also very flavorful. We finished with a yummy fruit crisp. We received excellent service, as always, including a tip from the chef that the Pacific Gold oysters are delivered on Wednesdays. We love the cozy atmosphere and had a great conversation with the couple at the table next to us, who overheard us mentioning their hometown Omaha."
    Dined on 7/13/2014
  • "Not many people in the restaurant. The server wasn't friendly and forgot to bring water. They were out of ingredients for one of the three drinks they have that are non-alcoholic. The food was pretty good. The restaurant could use a little makeover; the Hollywood location is much nicer and staff a lot friendlier."
    Dined on 7/13/2014
  • "After a superb cooking class at Market Forays on 7/12/14, my husband and I were on the lookout for a place to have a light but tasty meal and The Hungary Cat fit the bill perfectly. We shared a dozen briny tasty Sunset oysters on the half shell served with a zesty cocktail sauce and a zippy mignonette. We then moved on to a pound of delicious fresh off the boat local rock crab claws. Attempts to use the shell fish crackers resulted in uncracked crab claws. On to plan B, whacking the claws with our dinner knifes - eh voila - success. Fortunately were seated by the wall so no one was hit by flying shells. Better crackers & picks would be a much appreciated addition. We will be back to try the entrees which looked good!"
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "Loved this place! Not your usual Santa Barbara eatery-- and that's a compliment"
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "This restaurant doesn't try to be too cute. Fish and shellfish perfectly prepared, with minimal extra ingredients. Grilled whole fish (orata) was as good as I've ever had. Wife said same about mussels."
    Dined on 7/4/2014
  • "Everything was good; the grilled octopus, seafood filled squash blossoms and the whole sea bass. A lot of other interesting menu items to check out next time."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "I thought that the food and service were very good but the prices were about 25% too high."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "We adore the Hungry Cat and can always count on a great dinner, served hot and professionally."
    Dined on 6/26/2014
  • "I could never recommend this restaurant to anyone. I felt as though they were doing me a favor to wait on us. When we arrived we were directed to a table, not shown a table. Do it yourself style. After waiting at our table at least 20 minutes, for someone to at least offer us a drink, We walked out. They weren't even busy."
    Dined on 6/14/2014
  • "We split the asparagus salad appetizer and the seafood tower and it was plenty for two people. The oysters were great, but raw clams weren't as fresh. Don't recommend the apple bignet dessert: it was a glorified donut. The overall scene felt like a bar with a restaurant attached. If you are looking for a high energy environment then give it a try, but if you want a quiet dinner find an alternative."
    Dined on 6/9/2014
  • "This is our second visit to The Hungry Cat, and it was just as good as the first visit. We ordered a half dozen raw oysters which were fresh and very good. My husband said his softshell crab sandwich was delicious. My red snapper with a Moroccan flair was cooked perfectly and had a crispy skin. We enjoyed our tasty bourbon cocktails and ended dinner with piping hot apple beignets. The service was spot on, and we love the atmosphere. This time we sat at the bar and watched the dishes being prepared, which was fun. "
    Dined on 6/5/2014
  • "I don't like sea food and I loved my muscles and lamb entree. The server suggested it as an approachable dish for non seafood people. He was spot on, I would go there again just for that dish!"
    Dined on 6/4/2014
  • "We were pleasantly surprised and would highly recommend this restaurant for seafood lovers. Great oyster bar. Casual atmosphere but attentive and helpful staff. Or salad and seafood dishes were outstanding. "
    Dined on 6/2/2014
  • "Fresh Santa Barbara Sea Urchin - to die for! They serve it with these delicious salty crackers - a great pairing. We also had the raw oysters and grilled octopus. I highly recommend all the above!"
    Dined on 5/31/2014
  • "Crabs and shrimps were frozen fresh and a shelled sea urchin was too skinny. Oysters and clums were fresh. The restaurant foor was messy. Service was OK but the food was too gricy for the freshiness. Disappointed! ( Hungry Dog)"
    Dined on 5/24/2014
  • "This place is great on Mondays as they have a half-price special on oysters, which immediately brings down the price of the meal (a concern, since Hungry Cat is quite pricy). The quality, however, remains the same. Our oysters were ridiculously fresh and the selection was admirable. We paired with some beers and a flatbread appetizer which was equally satisfying. I would like to see more beer selection, but look forward to returning on Mondays all the same. "
    Dined on 5/19/2014
  • "Went for brunch. Kept ordering more and more as it was delectable"
    Dined on 5/17/2014
  • "Great food but to noisy.The Clams are out of this world. Wine portions were skimpy; should be more considering the price."
    Dined on 5/1/2014
  • "A great place to go for fresh seafood, particularly their shellfish offerings. Had their mixed plate of oysters, clams, crab, shrimp, and lobster and it was outstanding. Wine list is limited and a bit pricey. "
    Dined on 4/27/2014
  • " The raw oysters were delicious. We ordered crab cakes which the waitress said were made from lump crabmeat from the Chesapeake Bay. They were not lump nor were they from the Chesapeake Bay nor were they more than low average in taste. When we commented on them, the waitress said she made a mistake and that they were dungeness crab. The resataurant is very noisy and tables are packed together. The food is expensive for the quality received. Would not eat there again. "
    Dined on 4/27/2014
  • "The food was excellent. It had great sea food and non-sea food options. The draft beer selection was focused and local. Mother loved that the iced tea came in a carafe. We both had a great time."
    Dined on 4/20/2014
  • "Hungry Cat is one of my go to places. My experience tonight was negative mostly due to an arrogant waiter. He started out very rude. One person at my table ordered a burger ($20) and asked for no blue cheese. It came out smothered in cheese. My friend asked the waiter if he could send it back. The waiter took the burger and stormed off. He came back and said the kitchen refused to remake the burger and would only offer to put it back on the grill to melt off the cheese. When my friend protested he said, "Well we're not going to just throw it into the trash". My friend decided to not eat he was so upset and the waiter never offered to get him anything else. I've noticed that type of attitude the last few times i've dinned there."
    Dined on 4/4/2014
  • "The menu is changed since the last time I was there. Delicious food-- limited choices."
    Dined on 3/12/2014
  • "For the best of the best in "pie" I always go to Olio Pizzaria! It can't be any better...unless your in Italy!"
    Dined on 3/7/2014
  • "The seafood was tasty but pricey, and the fish portions surprisingly small. We had to ask for bread with the mussels, and it cost extra. The wine was also surprisingly expensive, given the location near the wineries of Santa Barbara. The ambiance was casual, and upbeat, with grunge decor. The service was friendly and helpful."
    Dined on 3/7/2014
  • "My husband and I loved this place. The raw oysters were fresh and delicious. My trout was perfectly prepared and scrumptious. We were enthralled with their handcrafted bourbon cocktails. The service was prompt, professional and welcoming. We also loved the decor - the woodwork, the chalkboard, the old school ceiling fans - it reminded me of the Blue Jacket in Milwaukee, which must have gotten its inspiration from the Hungry Cat. We plan to come back regularly."
    Dined on 3/2/2014
  • "As usual the food is great. I took a business colleague who had never been there. Certainly didn't disappoint. I had the lobster roll and it was just delicious, homemade pickles were also a nice touch."
    Dined on 2/28/2014
  • "I explained to the waiter that I was on a restricted diet. I chose the Diver scallops (squash risotto, roasted brussels, roasted sun chokes). I opted to not have the risotto because I am off carbs. What I received were 4 scallops, 1 brussel sprout (nicely cut in half) and slivers of I don't know what (seriously - a few slivers). I guess it was incorrect of my to assume that by not having the Risotto, they would logically assume I could not eat it and provide more vegetables. What I did have was really yummy, but not to the tune of $32.00. Needless to say, I was one hungry cat. I was not pleased. I really don't know if I would return just because of the inconsiderate choice of the chef."
    Dined on 2/17/2014
  • "Love the food and the cocktails at the Hungry Cat. Fun place to sit at the bar and watch the kitchen. Always something new, in both the food and fresh cocktail world. Great cheeses too. Service is good, which is rare in Santa Barbara."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "We made reservations for Valentines not even thinking about the fact they may have a special menu. I was looking forward to shrimp and a salad. Well, the special menu, while pretty expensive was excellent. We loved it. The dessert, the cheesecake was pretty teeny tiny, probably better for us anyway! I love Hungry Cat..."
    Dined on 2/14/2014