About The Lark - Santa Barbara

131 Anacapa St. Suite A
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
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The Lark pays homage to the history of California train travel and tributes the treasured and long gone Santa Barbara Fish Market, built in the 1920’s as a commercial fish processing plant, shipping their seafood products throughout the state by rail. With an imaginative yet approachable menu created by the gifted Jason Paluska, The Lark celebrates everything found around Santa Barbara County – wineries, farms, ocean and natural beauty. The stunning design strives to connect to the past and the future, using discovered objects from the past and blending them with modern, urban and industrial materials to spectacular effect.

Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Contemporary American, Tapas / Small Plates, American

Hours of Operation:
Dinner:
5:00 p.m. - Closing Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
Late Night Bar Menu available
CLOSED MONDAY

Dress Code:
Smart Casual

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(805) 284-0370

Website:
http://www.thelarksb.com/

Parking Details:
Complimentary valet parking available or use nearby street parking. Substantial parking is available at the Santa Barbara train station, just a block away.

Public Transit:
Enjoy a train ride to Santa Barbara from southern or northern California and meet us at The Lark. No driving required.

Executive Chef:
Jason Paluska

Additional:
Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Special Events & Promotions:
Contact our Special Events Director at 805.284.0370 or email Sarah Zwisler: szwisler@acmehospitality.com

Restaurant Photos

The Lark - Santa Barbara Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.5

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.5

service

4.4

ambience

4.4

noise

Moderate

91% would recommend it to a friend

Loved For

Contemporary American
California Central Coast
Most Booked
California Central Coast
Fit for Foodies
Santa Barbara
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Most Booked
Santa Barbara
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special occasion (95)
neighborhood gem (79)
vibrant bar scene (63)
romantic (60)
good for groups (59)
notable wine list (38)
late-night find (15)
kid-friendly (7)
great for brunch (7)
great for lunch (6)
 (6)
 (4)
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 (3)
 (3)
scenic view (3)
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Newest
966 reviews
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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

Consistently shines. The seasonal chang ...

vip
Dined 3 days ago

Consistently shines. The seasonal changes to the menu are all excellent. Portions are large, service is attentive despite the crowds (this place is packed even at 5 PM). A great place to sample the flavors of the central coast.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
food2
ambience5
service5
value3

The service was amazing and we have had ...

Dined 4 days ago

The service was amazing and we have had better meals at The Lark before. This time, there was an issue with too much salt on our dishes. That said, this is really an amazing spot! Beautiful location and quite special.

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, hot spot
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Absolutely excellent fresh vibrant food ...

Dined 5 days ago

Absolutely excellent fresh vibrant food and fun relaxing atmosphere.

Tags: great for brunch, kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
food3
ambience4
service4
value3

Server was very knowledgable about food ...

Dined 5 days ago

Server was very knowledgable about food preparation and ingredients.

Tags: great for outdoor dining
food5
ambience5
service5

Loved the Brussels sprouts, Paloma drink ...

Dined on May 22, 2016

Loved the Brussels sprouts, Paloma drink, short ribs, pork belly AND crab dishes! Sharing a bunch of items with friends is the way to go here :)

food5
ambience5
service5
value5

The Lark is a must for anyone looking fo ...

Dined on May 22, 2016

The Lark is a must for anyone looking for an incredible meal in Santa Barbara. Service is great and all the food is fantastic. I will be back many more times!

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, hot spot, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

A very unique experience. Great food ser ...

Dined on May 21, 2016

A very unique experience. Great food served on wooden planks or platters so everyone can share their order with everyone at the table. Or you can enjoy the food yourself. Reservations are highly recommended.

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Consistently excellent and creative food ...

Dined on May 20, 2016

Consistently excellent and creative food quality and presentation, good service, great venue and ambiance. Definitely one of the better restaurants in Santa Barbara. I highly recommend.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, late-night find, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

I've been here many times, the food neve ...

Dined on May 19, 2016

I've been here many times, the food never disappoints , the presentation is unique, service is great. Everything was delicious and prepared well, octopus was dry abit

Tags: fit for foodies, special occasion, late-night find, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience5
service4
value5

There is nothing like The Lark in Santa ...

vip
Dined on May 19, 2016

There is nothing like The Lark in Santa Barbara that puts the whole package together--delicious, innovative food, good service, a beautiful, vibrant environment. Chef Jason Paluska's food is amazing--layers of flavor and all the ingredients so fresh. We shared the asparagus (our friend, a caterer, said it was the best she'd ever had), the wedge salad (so good!), the charcuterie board that was the perfect blend of pork, spice, pickled vegetables and charred bread, the shrimp and clams with potato puree, then sadly had no room for their desserts. The only complaint in the otherwise flawless experience was the busboy didn't refill our water until we asked the waitress. But, The Lark is one of, if not THE, best restaurants in town.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Great food!

Dined on May 19, 2016

The brussel sprouts were amazing! All the dishes we had were exeptional

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
food3
ambience4
service3
value3

Adventures in dining often rewarded

Dined on May 18, 2016

We like to dine in SB's creative restaurants. Comfort foods are not on our agenda. Lark offers both comfort and creative options. Fried brussels sprouts for the table were excellent. I opted for beet salad (huge and excellent)and a vegetarian tagine. My wife chose the garden salad and hanger steak. I was happier with my choices than she was. The tagine came well after her entree, apparently a server mix up - my tagine went to the wrong table, so they had to make another one for me. When it arrived, it was huge, comprised of poached apricots, chick peas, and carrots. Neither balanced nor sharply flavored, thinly composed. Tagine-style it was not. Her steak was pretty chewy, I gave up after one slice, she gave up half way through. We bagged the unfinished foods and dropped them off at a nearby homeless encampment - better than the restaurant tossing them into their garbage. We've had better meals at Lark, and will return to try again. Its a fun place. If you want it like home, stay home...

Tags: great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Loved loved this restaurant! My husband ...

vip
Dined on May 16, 2016

Loved loved this restaurant! My husband and I visited it for the first time on our recent trip to Santa Barbara. It's tucked away on a narrow side street off of Cabrillo. The patio is the place to sit - lively and very pretty. We're huge fans of small plates and love to share different and imaginative food. We ordered three dishes to share: the raw oysters with Meyer lemon and red radishes - so fresh and bright; the grilled Spanish Octopus which was melt in your mouth tender with lots of bold flavor; and the grilled Hangar steak also very good. This was by far our favorite meal during our trip and we can't stop talking about how good it was. Definitely going back!

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
food5
ambience4
service4
value4

funk zone at its best

Dined on May 15, 2016

Been here twice. First time on a week day night early. Recently on a Saturday night. The food is excellent!! both times. We most recently enjoyed the scallop dish with Israeli couscous and beet salad. Thankfully got a quiet table near a fire pit. The weekend crowd is very young and the vibe is Alive!

Tags: fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

We always enjoy our time at the Lark. We ...

Dined on May 15, 2016

We always enjoy our time at the Lark. We start with those delicious Brussels sprouts and proceed from there. It is fun, totally unstuffy, and the food is really top notch! Our servers are knowledgeable and friendly...could not be more pleased. The Lark is our go-to place for birthdays and other special occasions.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
food5
ambience4
service5

Great spot in the heart of the funk zone ...

vip
Dined on May 15, 2016

Great spot in the heart of the funk zone. Deviled eggs and Brussel sprouts are great starters. The beet salad is always amazing. The Hamachi is a bit small but delicious! For the main I am stuck on the Mary's Chicken with black pepper grits and okra. It is s o filling and yummy! Definitely one of Santa Barbara's IT spots.

food5
ambience3
service5

The food was unbelievable and very reaso ...

Dined on May 13, 2016

The food was unbelievable and very reasonable in price. Our wait person Brooke was one of the best I have care for me and my partner. We were so impressed that we tried to go back the next night but thee was no table available. We will be there often!!

food3
ambience4
service3
value2

A Bit Pretentious

Dined on May 9, 2016

Even though we told our server that we had not visited the restaurant before, we were none the wiser ordering various dishes that did not fit a normal meal protocol. If the experience had been explained to us we would have had a much better experience. The worst part was the desert. The server told us what the Special was. We said ok expecting the menu to then be brought but no the Special arrived! We won't return.

Tags: fit for foodies
food5
ambience4
service5

Wow, this is my kind of restaurant: fant ...

vip
Dined on May 9, 2016

Wow, this is my kind of restaurant: fantastic food as far as taste, presentation, service, and price-point (very reasonable, considering the quality) . . . and yet, it's laid back and non-pretentious. Sense this was my first time, I went for the popular dishes, including: the brussels sprouts and the short rib. In addition, I had the chocolate tres leches cake. Well, I have now found my go-to restaurant whenever I visit Santa Barbara!

food5
ambience5
service5
value4

We loved this place! It's very busy, bu ...

Dined on May 8, 2016

We loved this place! It's very busy, but in a cool and buzzy way. It has a very hip and nice staff, as well as being very skilled (they clearly know all about what they are serving!) The family style portions were great and the food was inventive and delicious. The atmosphere seemed to be mixed of locals and visitors. We will definitely come back if we're ever in Santa Barbara again!

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Just fantastic

Dined on May 6, 2016

The food was great and the service was fantastic. Really cute place in with a great wine list and interesting food. The Brussel sprouts are no joke

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, notable wine list
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

Top of the heap

vip
Dined on May 6, 2016

Santa Barbara is a pretty good restaurant town, especially if you like Northern Italian or modern California cuisine. But it has only one truly great restaurant: Lark. The food is original, the service excellent, the value remarkable. Only one criticism: It can get very noisy on weekends, when the bar scene goes into warp drive. Well, a second small one: The outdoor seating isn't very comfortable. All told, though, eating at Lark is a consistently delightful experience.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
food5
ambience3
service2
value3

Great food...rushed service

Dined on May 6, 2016

I took my cousin here because I heard so many people rave about the food and I wanted her to enjoy a taste of SB while she was in town. Gavin, who was our waiter...totally rushed us. I ordered an $90 bottle of wine and a fair amount of food. In total I spend over $200 on a meal here (for 2 of us). You would think the servers would give us time to enjoy our meal...nope! Water boys hovered our table checking to see when to bring things and we did not have time to finish one course before it was taken away and the next course put in its place. We were pushed out in 1 hour...yikes! Not sure I will come back if I want to have a relaxing meal.

Tags: hot spot
food3
ambience4
service5
value4

Disappointed

vip
Dined on May 5, 2016

We went with high expectations and though one dish was wonderfully inventive our lamb was disappointing -- so fatty as to almost inedible.

Tags: good for groups
food4
ambience5
service5
value5

Very unique space and menu

Dined on May 2, 2016

While you wait for your starter order--try the brussels sprouts-- you will be served a bowl of warm buttered herbed popcorn! That's preferable to the bread basket that we would have wasted, but the popcorn? We ate that for sure. The gnocchi with crab was delicious, although if you are a fan of denser, toothier gnocchi, you will notice these are soft pillowy dumplings instead. The scallops with squid ink pearl couscous was perfect--rare scallops and lots of squid ink pasta. They have a cucumber vodka they use for their Moscow Mule, but on request, they will make you a martini with it--yum!

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot
food3
ambience4
service2
value3

Neat space. Disappointing food

Dined on April 29, 2016

Food was good but not great and our server seemed quite uncomfortable. Asparagus shouldn't be the size of tree trunks. Space is worth the visit.

Tags: fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

I loved the uniqueness of this place. Th ...

Dined on April 25, 2016

I loved the uniqueness of this place. The food was incredibly fresh, seasonal and the most unusual flavor combinations - delicious! There was a birthday card on the table for my daughter's birthday and a birthday surprise for dessert.

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion
food3
ambience2
service3
value2

Disappointing

vip
Dined on April 24, 2016

We were so looking forward to dining at the Lark. Very disappointed. Nice wait person got drink orders wrong. Very noisy and crowded Gnocchi with crab expensive and doughy with little crab. chicken over cooked Too little of the excellent sauce Salad good but again too little of excellent balsamic dressing Foie gras awful We are not hard to please so they need to re-orient after their big success.

food5
ambience5
service5

Love this place. Food is always excelle ...

Dined on April 23, 2016

Love this place. Food is always excellent , good wine list with local favorites. Love the family style plates.

food4
ambience5
service5
value4

The Lark - quintessential California:)

vip
Dined on April 21, 2016

The Lark is the quintessential California restaurant -- indoor/outdoor seating, great lighting, farm to table food, terrific libations and wine list. Highly recommend it!

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, neighborhood gem, hot spot
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

GREAT!

Dined on April 18, 2016

CUSTOMER SERVICE WAS AMAZING, FREE DESSERT FOR BIRTHDAY, DELICIOUS FOOD!

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

Great food terrific service

Dined on April 18, 2016

First trip to the Lark and will be one of many. Service was quick and each course was timely, hot and tasty. Quality of food was outstanding . Thanks for the overall quality performance...

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

The Lark...outstanding dining and service!

Dined on April 16, 2016

The seasonal menu is always evolving with wonderfully creative and delicious offerings. The "everyone gets to share" service style affords an opportunity to experience a broad array of flavors. The wine list is exceptional. The service is friendly and attentive without being over-bearing. I will return time and again!

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service5

Friendliness and excellent service

Dined on April 15, 2016

Friendliness and excellent service

food5
ambience4
service5
value4

Food and service at the Lark is outstand ...

Dined on April 15, 2016

Food and service at the Lark is outstanding. Get the Brussels sprouts! They are to die for. And everything else, too. One of the very best places for food in Santa Barbara.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

Hip and cool

vip
Dined on April 14, 2016

Tried this place on a recent trip to Santa Barbara and we are happy we did. Great vibe, great space and the food was wonderful. The popcorn snack is a real treat.

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
food1
ambience3
service3
value1

Poor execution

vip
Dined on April 14, 2016

All our food was overcooked - scallops were very browned and left in pan too long - very chewy. Gnocchi were like glue - probably cooked too long in hot water (though flavor was good). Even the recommended cheesecake profiteroles were awful - just rubbery balls with simple cheese inside. No choux! This was a Wednesday evening too, at 7:30pm. Hardly a Saturday primetime! It's also telling to us when servers remove large amounts of uneaten food and don't ask if the food was okay. Or check in to see if it is okay during the meal. Too busy or don;t want to know> They were quick enough when refilling drinks...

food5
ambience5
service5

Our server Jaz was outstanding and our f ...

vip
Dined on April 14, 2016

Our server Jaz was outstanding and our food was very creative and delicious. Will definitely return!!

food5
ambience5
service5

We ordered a wide variety of dishes and ...

Dined on April 13, 2016

We ordered a wide variety of dishes and everything was beautifully presented and delicious.

food2
ambience3
service3

I did not like my meal at all. It was ch ...

vip
Dined on April 11, 2016

I did not like my meal at all. It was chicken tangine that didn't taste at all like chicken tangine. For the first time ever I sent the water back due to the soapy taste and got bottled. Our apps came before our cocktail. Nothing good to say

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