About Cielito Restaurant
We believe that a meal is best enjoyed amongst friends in a beautiful venue, and that dining out shouldn’t have to mean sacrificing healthy choices for decadent flavors. This notion is what makes our Executive Chef and Nutritional Alchemist, Kurt Steeber the perfect steward for Cielito’s journey into our third year.
Chef Kurt has redefined decadence, creating menus that not only highlight the exceptional flavors that Cielito is known for, but also impressively raise the bar on intentional and healthful dining. We have also partnered with Santa Barbara’s own fitness and lifestyle change powerhouse, Jenny Schatzle, offering a designated selection of dishes that provide a map for those wanting to savor all of the joys of a night out, without straying from the path of conscientious eating.
Join us as Cielito starts a new conversation about food, community, and gratitude for the bounty of Santa Barbara.
Mexican, Seafood, Tapas / Small Plates
Hours of Operation:
Saturday & Sunday 11:00am - 3:00pm
Tuesday - Friday 4:00pm-6:00pm
Saturday & Sunday 3:00pm - 5:00pm
Tuesday - Thursday & Sunday 5:00pm - 9:00pm
Friday & Saturday 5:00pm - 10:00pm
W. Anapamu St.
$30 and under
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Join us for live music every Sunday and Tuesday night from 5-8pm!
Public Parking Lot behind the restaurant on Anacapa Street and Figueroa Street
Private Party Facilities:
From intimate to expansive, Cielito has the perfect space - and menu - for all your Corporate and Private Dining Events. Please see http://cielitorestaurant.com/private_dining/
Private Party Contact:
Erica Brophy: 8889825066
Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Farm to Table, Fireplace, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Takeout, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine
Special Events & Promotions:
From an outdoor lunch on a beautiful private patio, to intimate dining areas on the mezzanine level of the restaurant, Cielito offers many ways to create a beautiful and memorable private party or event. Please see http://cielitorestaurant.com/private_dining/ for more information!
Cielito Restaurant Ratings and Reviews
Good food, young, lively atmosphere.
Good food, young, lively atmosphere.
I enjoyed this restaurant for the ambience and the service, and their cocktails were great, too. However, I think the prices are way too high for what it is. The food is good, but I'd like to see a price adjustment on the menu.
Quesdadillas, with flour tortillas (now) are tough
This once excellent restaurant has a new chef. The soup was excellent. The tortill -based foods were so tough as to be inedible. My plate with the food piled to one side tells the story. Come in for a bowl of soup, some salsas, and a margarita. I believe this chef has potential, but she/he needs to taste some of the foods before they leave the kitchen. This had been my favorite restaurant. Is there a way for someone to give good advice and help before this place goes under?
Unfortunately, our dining experience wa ...
Unfortunately, our dining experience was terrible, cannot recall ever having such an experience at any restaurant. Seriously the worst service ever, very unorganized. Hopefully they'll get there act together soon!
Below average food
The ambiance and drinks were good but the food was below average and way too expensive.
Santa Barbara charm
Great menu. great drinks incredible service and good food. Not too loud and has a very cool balcony serving area as well as outdoor next to a beautiful fountain with turtles. Its in a little Spanish type architectural plaza. Lots of shops and more venues...
We came early and the hostesses were able to seat us immediately. The reservation wanted to put us outside, however there was no option for either in or out. The server took forever to take our drink orders. Our appetizers came out before our bar drinks. The plates were cold. Taste of food was good, but a cold plate is no bueno! I've been here before and this is the first time I had a bad experience. Very mediocre and for it being a holiday and not being very busy, I was terribly disappointed.
We've been here several times and had re ...
We've been here several times and had really good dining experiences, however tonight was the exception. We had reservation for 7:45 and were seated at 8:20. The service was very subpar. We had two different servers and both were not very good. Plus we had to repeat orders because the two waiters weren't talking to each other. The food was a bit off tonight as well. Maybe it was an off night. Let's hope so at least .
Average Food for 20 Somethings.
The food was average. Our waiter was really attentive. The ambiance was nice. The hostesses put us at a table near the busy entrance. We asked to be in the main dining room which was empty and they said it was all Reserved. They moved us upstairs to an obscure location. The seats in the main dining room were empty while we were there and empty when we left except for some 20 somethings at one table and at the bar. I think we were too "old" for their vibe and so we were hidden.
Misses the mark everytime
Thirds time we have dinned here, third time we have been disappointing. Services extremely lacking. Two of the three entrees arrived cold. Although incredibly tasty food should not be cold. We ordered a margarita upon arrival. Then a second before the meal arrived. The second round of drinks arrived after we had completely finished our food. Not acceptable. Waitress seemed unaware I food has arrived as someone else served it. Tab $170 for three people. Tacos and margaritas, seems extreme. May have forgiven it if the service has been top notch. Won't be back.
The service and the cocktails were excel ...
The service and the cocktails were excellent. The pork quesadilla was very good. The fish taco trio was ok and the tuna ceviche was ok. The chips were too salty.
Amazing Service - Incredible & Unique Menu
We came in with a group of 6 and our waiter Nuri made our experience exceptional! We had several picky eaters and food allergies in the group and we trusted him to personally hand select our menu FOR US!!! His knowledge and experience was top notch and the selection of items he introduced us to were superb! We highly recommend Cielito & (if at all possible) GET NURI!
Great as always
Food and service was excellent as always. One of the best drink menus in town.
Hostesses were distracted and unhelpful. ...
Hostesses were distracted and unhelpful. Ended up being seated 20 minutes later than our reservation and right next the kitchen (basically in the waiting area) - bumped as everyone passed us. The food was delicious but definitely small portions and overpriced. Pretty disappointed but luckily we made the most of it and had fun.
Got a call 30 minutes before our New Year's Eve reservation time to say that because we had booked through open table we'd be seated outside. Despite repeatedly asking to be seated inside, it was quite chilly on the patio, the rude hostess refused to move us inside. There were at least 3 two-top tables open walking in and at least that many when we had finished. Ordered a cocktail that was supposed to be spicy but it was so hot as to be undrinkable. The waitress didn't take the drink back or take it off the bill. The chips and guacamole were good, but the rest of the meal was tasteless.
Never disappointed! Excellent choice everytime!
Food is always delicious! Salmon cakes and Ahi Ceviche are favorites! Pescado tacos as well!!!
Food was just OK. The cioppino was skimp ...
Food was just OK. The cioppino was skimpy on seafood and the local seabass was an overfried filet thrown on top like an afterthought. Disappointed after previous good experiences.
Great service, poor food
The service and the ambiance were so nice, but the food was not good at all. It lacked flavor.
I love the freshly-made tortilla chips a ...
I love the freshly-made tortilla chips and trio salsa. I also enjoyed the sampler ceviches. Service was excellent.
Outdoor dining at its finest
We had a great anniversary dinner at cielito. We took our dog on are trip we were concern in finding a nice restaurant that was dog friendly. We found it with cielito, not only was outside setting beautiful. The food and service fantastic. We had appetizers and entrees both were superb, ceviche peruano and the seafood enchiladas were beyond tasty. Service was great, Russ or Ross was very kind and treated our dog good. We enjoyed a very attentive service by the waiter staff. I highly recommend Cielito and will for sure visit on our next trip to Santa Barbara.
Great dinner menu for sharing small plates with adventurous friends!
Not happy at all
On this price level I'd expect certain level of service and food quality. First off, I made reservations for table with a great view (meaning upstairs). When we arrived I was told the upstairs is being cleaned. When we were finally taken back to our table, the host disappeared after giving us only 3 menus for six of us. After a long while, the drinks arrived, one of us did not get her drink. I ordered the octopus salad and the octopus so bitter, it just did not taste good at all. Also, our meals came separately and we had to wait about 5 minutes for the rest. I don't complain often but I have to say this restaurant stood out for me - in a bad way.
Great Mexican food
Very unusual and healthy Mexican food. Great salsa appetizer although there are no free chips. The outdoor seating area is lovely with fountain wih Tortugas.
We were celebrating our engagement, and ...
We were celebrating our engagement, and it was awfully slow/empty. But really nice wait staff, and great food (it came awfully fast).
Always great! The tuna ceviche is don't ...
Always great! The tuna ceviche is don't miss item!
Very good experience!
We brought two 20 something's and it was a perfect place for them and us older folks. The food was yummy and the service was exceptional.
What happened to the great sopes?
The unique, gourmet, Mexican food I had enjoyed there before is no longer on the menu. The 3 flavorful salsas and chips are still available. The menu features a number of mexican seafood items and vegetarian entrees. The rice is good. However, no beans in sight. The menu description on the menu does indicate it is food with a latin-american influence. In spite of the special setting, high quality food and polite servers, for me it no longer is the "little heaven" it once was.
Cielito? Great choice!
Absolutely amazing service! Throughout the entire night everyone was friendly and very offering. The waiters came up to us with our food and explicitly told us what was in store for our taste buds! Amazing! I will definitely eat here again!
Delicious food / Deplorable Servicw
A Santa Barbara native recommended me to this restaurant so I was hopeful it would be amazing. My hubby had a business associate in town for the Jimmmy Buffet concert and we wanted to treat him to a fine dining experience. Although we made reservations and the restaurants was relately empty the host wanted to seat us at a high top bar type table despite there being an entire covered patio? He said the entire area was reserved (nobody came) . Next came our arrogant, turtle slow waiter who said he would be by in 5 minutes only to return in 20. He proceeded to wait on us as if he was doing us a favor. We had to waive him down to get or million dollar drinks which was crazy pants since he barely had any other tables. If we weren't in a time crunch I Definately would have left. We proceeded to drink multiple $14 drinks and order delicious filet despite his demeanor. Thank goodness the food turned out to be wonderful. A much needed surprise after all that lack of love.
Santa Barbara has many restaurants. This was a true find (thank you Open Table). The ambiance inside and outside was romantic, charming and calming. The menu was different with a combination of American, Continental and Mexican (done imaginatively). We would definitely return to this restaurant.
not as expected
My husband and I where looking forward to some latin food. I really wanted to try the crab cause with aji-amaillo sauce, which is on the website, But they haven't had that on the menu for quite awhile. Instead we split the salmon cakes, they were good. My husband had the Peruvian Seafood stew and thought it was good, but way too salty, he couldn't finish it and that's something. I had the shrimp and crab enchiladas, they were okay but not great. I couldn't taste any crab at all. If visting Santa Barbara again, we won't go back.
Wonderful atmosphere and great drinks
A very beautiful courtyard atmosphere. We had great margaritas but the food was average. The ceviche trio was ok but nothing special. I had the farmer enchiladas and my boyfriend had the shrimp and lobster enchiladas both were fine but we've had better Mexican food. Would return to the restaurant for drinks.
Sophisticated and Elegant! Delicious food!
We love dining here. The ambiance is great and whether we are dining as a couple or with others, we always feel like we get the best spot! Service has always been great! Food is outstanding! We were disappointed that there was no salmon the last time we went and also the big rehearsal party outside was loud at times but we were too busy enjoying our company that it didn't ruin our experience. We will always come back for the salmon cakes and the spring rolls! Delicious!!!
The location is inviting like a piazza in Europe. We had a reservation for outside and the host informed us that she had guests for our table coming in an hour and half if we insisted on eating outside. We had made reservations for outside so we took what we had asked for. The waiter was arrogant with attitude. When asked if it was possible to get chicken added to an enchilada dish being offered on the menu he said yes, but not possible to get either beef or chicken in a taco dish on the menu. Bar drinks were fair at best. The experience was not a good one and especially not deserving of the the attitudes of both the hostess and waiter. Food was a 4 out of ten at best.
Great for groups
We had a relatively large group and the staff was well prepared for us. The food was delicious with a nice visual presentation. The location is ideal for wandering Santa Barbara before and after dinner.
Outstanding in Every Way
Everything on the menu looked appealing. We ordered the carne tacos, the shrimp enchilada and the salmon, and they were all delicious. I would have never guessed this because I'm kind of a fish-or-meat lover, but the enchilada was my favorite of the three. And that's saying something because they were all wonderful. Large portions. We got chips and guacamole to start and the chips were the best and the freshest I've ever had. Guacamole was terrific. Our waiter was a lovely guy, maybe more knowledgeable than I needed to know (do I really want to know that George Clooney almost bought the tequila farm?), but I prefer that to indifference. He was engaged and attentive without overdoing it.
Pork Belly Quesadillas remain outstanding. Everything else has gone way downhill since the original chef left. Tacos all starting to taste the same. Sopas were dry and crusty on this occasion. The new salad with farro at $18 is a rip off - big enough for 3 small servings, but not much taste and way too pricey. Did not try ceviche on this visit. Margaritas still very good.
We went here because of what we read and saw on Open Table. When we arrived...I can only say they have a great marketing department. In pictures the restaurant looks beautiful, it was far less than amazing. The lunch menu was extremely limited. Another reason we selected this restaurant was for its selection of tequilas...VERY DISSAPOINTING. Even though there were few people in the restaurant, the service was very slow...need I say more.
Original menue and great service
Great ambiance Excellent, knowledgeable staff. Ceviche sampler appetizer is unique and tasty. All of our meals were excellent. The Don Julio margarita is pricey but worth it!
Fantastic Santa Barbara Latin Restaurant
Excellent cuisine and service. Beautiful outdoor dining in La Arcada area of Santa Barbara.
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