9 W. Victoria Street
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
Touted as the best restaurant in Santa Barbara - reviewers were falling over themselves with praise for this French restaurant.
The restaurant has quaint indoor and outdoor seating. (We sat indoors.)Drinks
Belgian Peach Lambic beer (to compliment the fois gras & peaches)
Wine - Qupe - Syrah
Fois gras with peaches
on cauliflower puree with teardrop tomato confit,
crispy thyme & Clos Pepe Estate olive oil
Bourbon & Maple-Glazed California Duck Breast
duck confit, thyme-infused jus, succotash of corn, fava beans, applewood-smoked bacon and Windrose Farms butternut squash
Vanilla Crème Brulée
Based on the reviews we expected the food to be great, but it was just "okay". The mushrooms were burnt, the tiny serving of fois gras was laughable, and everything was too salty. Disappointing. The place itself was nice, prettier from the outside. The inside was very simple and small. In terms of service, our waiter was constantly coming over to ask us if we were enjoying our dinner, (expecting us to rave about the food), which got to be annoying and they couldn't clear everything away fast enough (including our lambic beer which we weren't finished with), although they overlooked our empty water glasses and we had to ask a couple times for more water.
My husband and I looked at each other and asked, "Have we become foodies?" Maybe we've been watching too many food network cooking shows and going to too many nice restaurants - but Bouchon didn't meet the definition of a great restaurant. Sadly, it was just okay. Food was okay, ambiance was okay, and service was okay.
Later when we got into a cab, our cab driver was surprised we weren't thrilled with Bouchon. "It's the best restaurant in Santa Barbara!" So we heard.