Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.06mi
  2. Distance: 0.13mi
  3. Distance: 0.22mi
  4. Distance: 0.25mi
  1. Distance: 0.06mi
  2. Distance: 0.13mi
  3. Distance: 0.22mi
  4. Distance: 0.25mi

Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.06mi
  2. Distance: 0.13mi
  3. Distance: 0.22mi
  4. Distance: 0.25mi
  1. Distance: 0.06mi
  2. Distance: 0.13mi
  3. Distance: 0.22mi
  4. Distance: 0.25mi

About Benchmark Eatery

Located in the heart of Santa Barbara; BENCHMARK eatery is focused on delivering value driven dishes and generous cocktails, all in a comfortable environment. Individuals, couples, families, locals and/or tourists will all find Santa Barbara’s BENCHMARK eatery to be a solid representation of the surrounding community.

1201 State St
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
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Dining Style:
Casual Dining

Cuisines:
American, Comfort Food, Burgers

Hours of Operation:
Daily 11:30a–10p
Happy Hour Daily 4p - 6p

Cross Street:
W Anapamu St

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(805) 845-2600

Website:
http://benchmarkeatery.com/

Additional:
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Outdoor dining, Takeout

Benchmark Eatery Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.3

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.1

service

4.1

ambience

4.1

value

3.9

noise

Moderate

89% would recommend it to a friend

Great for Outdoor Dining (7)
Good for Groups (5)
Kid-friendly (5)
See All
Casual (4)
Happy Hour (3)
Quiet Conversation (3)
Sunday Lunch (3)
Bar Seating (2)
Business Meals (2)
Comfort Food (2)
Gluten Free Options (2)
Handcrafted Cocktails (2)
Healthy (2)
Hot Spot (2)
Great for Lunch (2)
Neighborhood Gem (2)
People Watching (2)
Special Occasion (2)
Great Beer (1)
Afternoon Coffee (1)
Good for Birthdays (1)
Creative Cuisine (1)
Fit for Foodies (1)
Good for a Date (1)
Authentic (1)
Live Sports (1)
Pre/post Theatre (1)
Quick Bite (1)
Good Vegetarian Options (1)
Vibrant Bar Scene (1)
Worth the Drive (1)
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97 reviews
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vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on August 30, 2017

Great food for adults and kids. Friendly staff and relaxed atmosphere. Will definitely go back when in town!!

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food4
ambience5
service5

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on July 15, 2017

Great burgers!

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food4
ambience4
service3
value4

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on July 6, 2017

The kitchen forgot to make our dessert but our waitress was incredibly nice. Not the best benchmark experience but they are great 99% of the time so I can't complain much.

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food4
ambience4
service3
value3

 
 (Los Angeles)·Dined on July 3, 2017

Coming from LA, my daughter and I were pleased with the ambiance and the waitress was attentive and cheerful. We were able to split the half fried chicken, abd the salad dressing was to die for! Excellent food at a great value.
They should sell the salad dressing!

Tags: Kid-friendly, Good for Birthdays, Good for Groups, People Watching, Creative Cuisine, Worth the Drive, Great Beer, Great for Outdoor Dining
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

vip
 (Hawaii)·Dined on July 2, 2017

Nice open layout. KFC flavored chickpeas was a nice welcome treat. Was turned off by dirty spoon for the clam chowder. Bottom of spoon still had a gross piece of yuck stuck in it. Lemon drop martini was great. Salmon size was a tad small. Braised short rib was so-so. Generous portion of bland green veggies and a good size mashed potatoes. It was just ok. Nothing too memorable to warrant a return . We want to rate it a 4 but the dirty spoon was just GROSS.

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food3
ambience4
service3
value3

 
 (Phoenix)·Dined on July 1, 2017

My fiancée and I had the most wonderful dinner at Benchmark Eatery! We ate on their outdoor patio. The ambience is romantic, yet casual. The food and drinks are very affordable and of the highest quality. We will definitely be going back there again soon, and I highly recommend this restaurant!

Tags: Hot Spot, Quiet Conversation, Healthy, Great for Outdoor Dining, Kid-friendly, Comfort Food, Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies, Neighborhood Gem, Gluten Free Options, Good for a Date, Happy Hour
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on June 17, 2017

Getting seated took longer than expected but it was an overall great experience.

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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on May 21, 2017

Benchmark never falls short! We are happy every time we dine here. It is our favorite Special Occasion restaurant. Great food, amaxing wine list and a relaxed fun vibe. Check out the NY Steak Skewers and Fried Chicken Sandwich...but whatever you do, DO NOT leave without trying the chocolate cookie dessert...and don't fool yourself, go for the Large!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on May 14, 2017

We ate here for Mother's day lunch...came from LA. It was lovely. Great food, service and ambiance. We will definitely return.

Tags: Late-night Find, Great for Lunch, Great for Brunch, Handcrafted Cocktails
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (New England)·Dined on May 13, 2017

The service was horrible. Our waitress was MIA the whole time.

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food4
ambience4
service1
value4

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on May 6, 2017

My husband and I met my dad and his girlfriend for dinner and everyone loved what they ordered. There were plenty of vegetarian options (my husband and I are both vegetarian) and the pozole appetizer was outstanding!

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Casual, Pre/post Theatre, Good for Groups, Vibrant Bar Scene
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food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on April 29, 2017

I order steamed mussels frequently and these were not up to standard. I'm from SF Bay Area and these mussels were not up to par. Too large and very chewy to eat. I ate 1/4 of my meal. My friend experienced the same.

Tags: Comfort Food
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food2
ambience2
service3
value3

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on April 28, 2017

The service was slow ... the food was as pedestrian as the menu. With all the other better choices in SB., we would not return to this restaurant at all
It was much better as Maggie's

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food1
ambience2
service2
value2

 
 (Miami)·Dined on April 27, 2017

Nice atmosphere and great service. Food was delicious

Tags: Fun
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (Los Angeles)·Dined on April 22, 2017

We were underwhelmed with the food (sopes & Arlington burger - ordered medium rare, arrived well done) but the service was good. Enjoy your chickpeas!

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food2
ambience2
service3
value3

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on April 19, 2017

Great atmosphere. Indoor - outdoor. Big portions on food.

Tags: Comfort Food
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (Los Angeles)·Dined on April 16, 2017

My girlfriend and I decided to take a road trip to Santa Barbara on Easter Sunday. We stumbled upon this place from using OpenTable. We arrived in the late afternoon and were both hungry after driving about an hour and a half. We ordered fried calamari as an appetizer but after we placed our order the server brought out a complimentary serving of deep-fried chickpeas. My only knock would be that the chickpeas came out after we were there long enough to order the appetizer. It was a lovely day and our server was nice. I ordered the fried chicken sandwich and my girlfriend ordered an opened faced tuna melt and a drink called a La Paloma. We were both thoroughly satisfied with our meals. Although it's not oceanside dining, the food and location are still good enough to sit and people watch. The food, service, and prices are a great overall value and I suggest anyone that visits Santa Barbara to stop by.

You can't go wrong selecting this place for a nice meal.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Fun, Fit for Foodies, Sunday Lunch, Happy Hour, Comfort Food, Casual, Great for Lunch, People Watching
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on April 11, 2017

Fun in-town eatery. We went because we heard that the people who started Brophy's opened Benchmark. The food Was really good and even served those great garlic baked clams you can only get at Brophy's.
Our server was friendly and knew the menu well.
Definitely worth a stop if you're in Santa Barbara.

Tags: Great Beer, Casual, People Watching
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on April 9, 2017

Service was friendly but sporadic. The girl kept disappearing for ages. But when she was there was very friendly and helpful. The food is more like what you want while drinking (a lot) but not really what you want for a nice, quality meal. Tons of fried bar snacks, weird chicken wings that were basically half a chicken and made me stop eat meat again (that is an upside though). Convenient location across from Granada, good for patio dining or large parties but again, more to have snacks while drinking rather than a place to eat.

Tags: Casual, Great for Outdoor Dining
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food3
ambience3
service3
value3

 
 (Portland)·Dined on March 24, 2017

This restaurant was so noisy we could hardly hear each other- if you go there request NOT to sit outside- that's where it was so noisy.

Tags: Casual
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food4
ambience1
service3
value4

vip
 (Los Angeles)·Dined on March 18, 2017

It was great food and wonderful service.

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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

vip
 (Central Coast)·Dined on March 4, 2017

Timing of delivery dishes to the table a bit uneven. Signature highly recommended dish - Salmon- OK but nothing special, was OK. Patio great corner on State Street though.

Tags: Special Occasion, People Watching, Casual
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food2
ambience4
service3
value3

 
 (Austin)·Dined on February 23, 2017

Very nice place. Keep in mind Thursday is high school night so expect a noisy environment with lots of kids. Good food, great service, value.

Tags: Comfort Food, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on February 19, 2017

Great place to stop and dine while visiting Santa Barbara. Ok, so it's not oceanside dining, but the food and location make up for not having a beach view. The food was excellent, the service warm and friendly, and the prices were good, so overall a great value. What they did with brussel sprouts is nothing short of amazing ... even if you don't like them, this appetizer will make you want more. And the burrata was also outstanding. Also recommend the grilled chicken chop salad.

You can't go wrong selecting this place for a nice meal.

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Bar Seating, Good for Groups, Authentic, Healthy, Outstanding Value
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (New England)·Dined on February 14, 2017

The food was great, not too loud, service was timely and the waitress was friendly. Not a huge fan of the modern look of the interior, but overall it was a very enjoyable dining experience.

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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on February 14, 2017

Always a great staple for a date night, dinner/drinks with friends or a quick bite. The menu and drink selections will satisfy everyone. The food is quality, tasty and a good value.

Tags: Happy Hour, Bar Seating, Scenic View, Pre/post Theatre, Comfort Food, Quick Bite, Great Beer, Neighborhood Gem, Fun, Late-night Find, Vibrant Bar Scene, Good for Groups, People Watching
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on February 6, 2017

This is an excellent pre-theater place for dinner as it is right in the Santa Barbara theater district. The food is good and the atmosphere is Pleasant

Tags: Great for Lunch, Bar Seating, Good for Birthdays, Pre/post Theatre, Casual, Good for Groups, Kid-friendly, Neighborhood Gem, Sunday Lunch, Quick Bite, Happy Hour
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service4
value4

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on February 3, 2017

My friend and I were planning to attend the SBIFF Outstanding Performers Award ceremony, featuring award winners Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling, so we wanted to enjoy a meal beforehand. Benchmark Eatery, which is only about one and half blocks from the Arlington, turned out to be a great place with delicious food. Since we arrived during the happy hour, I was able to order from the happy hour menu. I enjoyed the tacos and Brussel sprouts, cooked in a most delicious way. I want that recipe! My friend enjoyed a meal from the dinner menu. We spent an hour eating and talking about the SBIFF. My husband and I attended another SBIFF event at the Arlington the night before, featuring winner of the Maltin Modern Master Award, Denzel Washington. We ate elsewhere last night, but for anyone wanting to enjoy some good food with some good friends, a date, or all alone, try the Benchmark Eatery. Not only is the food good and reasonably priced, the staff is also attentive and friendly. Thanks, Benchmark. See you again!

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining, Gluten Free Options, Casual, Happy Hour
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food5
ambience3
service5
value4

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on January 18, 2017

I've been here many times and really like this restaurant. Their shrimp tacos are delicious. I tried the pimms cocktail for the first time and can't wait to get again

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Casual, Fun, Great for Lunch, Hot Spot, Outstanding Value, Business Meals, Special Occasion, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for a Date, Handcrafted Cocktails
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on January 10, 2017

Had tickets for the Granada for my husband's birthday and wanted to give Benchmark Eatery a try. We were amazed at how great the experience was: food, service, ambience... the restaurant is a winner. Will definitely go back!!

Tags: Special Occasion, Spicy, Cozy, Creative Cuisine, Late-night Find, Great Beer, Quick Bite, Good for Birthdays, Pre/post Theatre, Comfort Food, Good for Anniversaries
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Sacramento)·Dined on December 31, 2016

Friendly and fast service; tasty food ina cool but casual setting. Glad they were open for New Years Eve and did not have a high-priced set menu! Our family loved it!

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Creative Cuisine
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on December 29, 2016

Very casual, somewhat cavernous space. Solid cocktails and food. Convenient to the Granada Theater.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre
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food4
ambience2
service3
value4

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on December 24, 2016

Best Mai Tais around and the half fried chicken is bomb diggidy. Great service, great atmosphere. A must go to.

Tags: Hot Spot, Pre/post Theatre, Business Meals, Fun, Fit for Foodies, Bar Seating, Seasonal, Outstanding Value, Authentic, Worth the Drive, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Sunday Lunch, Great for Lunch, Disabled Access, Good for Groups, Local Ingredients, Healthy, Great for Brunch, Quick Bite, Happy Hour, Good for a Date, Casual, Comfort Food, Tasting Menu
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on December 16, 2016

Our first visit - we enjoyed it. Had my parents in from out of town and they liked it, too. Menu has something for everyone and staff was friendly and fun. We'll be back!

Tags: Good for a Date, Casual, Great Beer, Great for Outdoor Dining, Vibrant Bar Scene
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service4
value3

vip
 (Los Angeles)·Dined on October 15, 2016

Hamburger is always to dry...2nd time its happened...they just can't make a good cheeseburger.

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food2
ambience4
service4
value2

vip
 (Central Coast)·Dined on October 10, 2016

This location, beloved for many years as the eponymous locals' hangout State&A, has a hard act to follow. It doesn't yet quite succeed. Best feature may be the bar, with its excellent layout and skilled service. Food was edible but, we all four agreed, scarcely memorable. Service was attentive, but it was a quiet Monday. The dining room with its concrete floor and plain tables lacks warmth and ambience. Still, with its reasonable prices and some hope that they will tweak things, we will go again.

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food3
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on October 9, 2016

The family and I enjoy having a meal here once a month or so. Prices are reasonable for the area and the food is good. As a local tour driver I often recommend this location to people looking for a good place for lunch or dinner.

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining, Kid-friendly, People Watching, Good for a Date, Casual
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food4
ambience4
service3
value3

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on October 8, 2016

Food was ok. Not crazy about fried pickles and posole had too much stuff in it that didn't belong in it.

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining
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food2
ambience2
service2
value3

vip
 (Los Angeles)·Dined on October 2, 2016

Good restaurant for proximity to the Granada Theater which has some great shows. Food is average with little imagination or taste. But it is a casual neighborhood restaurant to meet before and after a show. Service was above average and helps to make an enjoyable meal. Would return but keep the earl simple eg hamburgers are the best option.

Tags: Pre/post Theatre, Casual
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food3
ambience3
service4
value3

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on September 16, 2016

We went here with a group of 7 for a birthday dinner. I wanted to try a new place in town and heard wonderful things about Benchmark. It lived up to the hype. The food was wonderful and well priced for what you receive. Our server was wonderful and attentive. The decor and ambiance is very modern and fits the restaurant well. There was a large party that rented out the patio, which made the inside a bit crowded and loud, however it was still very enjoyable. I will definitely be returning and hope to sit out on their patio next time. One feature I truly loved, especially since we were with a group was how they "split" the check. It still comes on one receipt, however it is broken down by what people ordered and includes the tax for each person. There is no waste of time passing the bill around to figure out what you owe and then figuring out the tax - fantastic!
I highly recommend this place!

Tags: Fun, Fit for Foodies, Business Meals, Pre/post Theatre, Special Occasion, Hot Spot, Good for Groups, Outstanding Value, Great Beer, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service5
value5

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