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Fun SB restaurant with a good bar & picnic place for wine...

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Long Beach
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19 posts
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Fun SB restaurant with a good bar & picnic place for wine...

Any suggestions for a good restuarant (not too pricey) near State St for a group of 6?? We like a good martini, atmosphere and, of course, good food! Do we need to make reservations?? Also, we'll be going wine tasting too . . . any ideas for where to put together a good picnic lunch (meats, cheeses, etc.) and which winery would be best for a picnic!! Any and all suggestions are GREATLY appreciated!! Thanks!

california
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374 posts
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1. Re: Fun SB restaurant with a good bar & picnic place for wine...

Opal near the Arlington theatre (it used to be called Brigittes) is always very, very good. They have a fun atmosphere, not stuffy and great drinks. The food is always superb. Also, for a funkier atmosphere but with excellent food, try Roy's, just off State on Carillo (across from the side of Saks Fifth Avenue.)

There is a wine tasting room for SB Winery near the beach, downtown. But, I'm assuming you mean up North in Santa Ynez, etc????

Putting together a good picnic would mean a trip to C'est cheese on Santa Barbara Street. And, to Pierre Lafond on State Street. C'est cheese staff are sometimes really, really helpful and sometimes really snotty (actually, its just one guy who's that way, so be forewarned.)

Long Beach
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2. Re: Fun SB restaurant with a good bar & picnic place for wine...

Yes, we're going up to Santa Ynez for wine tasting for the day! Thanks for your help!

california
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374 posts
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3. Re: Fun SB restaurant with a good bar & picnic place for wine...

Why not check out Ballard, near SY......you can have lunch at the Ballard cafe (the place where they shot the double date/dinner scene in Sideways) for lunch. They are very friendly and I know they used to do picnic baskets, and they have wine tasting. Or, grab some sandwiches from Panino. My fave there is the #9 on a baguette, that's homemade brie, turkey and a great honey mustard.

While you're in SY, if you like animals, DO NOT MISS the miniature horse ranch on Alamo Pintado (the road that takes you to Ballard.) They have babies right now and you won't believe how cute they are.

Pacific Coast
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4. Re: Fun SB restaurant with a good bar & picnic place for wine...

For a picnic in the SY valley, there are two very notable spots: Sunstone Winery and Rusack Winery. Sunstone has quite the Provencal feel, is right down by the SY River and at the foot of the mountains. Rusack is out hidden among the rolling hills and, because it is some distance from any other winery, tends to be less crowded. You can sit at a table on the porch outside the tasting room overlooking the beautiful scenery--guess you can tell I prefer this one. Sunstone is nice, but where you sit you can't see anything.