Great no-frills, no-tourist dining.
I had wanted to go to this place forever, and finally got a chance. Warning ahead of time -- this isn't a sit-down place like its competitors up and down the pier, but that's the whole point. While the other restaurants on the pier give you cushy accommodations but mediocre, over-cooked food and sky-high prices, Santa Barbara Shellfish Co. specializes in getting you quality food at a price that is more than fair.
The menu includes Cioppino as well, and my wife (who had it) said it was far superior to others on the pier. I had the Dungeness crab special, which included salad, chowder, a whole crab (cooked expertly), and onion rings for $23 -- that's a steal in SB! They also have lots of great quality microbrews on tap, including my favorite, Anchor Steam, and many others bottled.
As mentioned in other reviews, the seating is not fancy, and it is cramped -- get there early and often. There are booths outdoors, but indoors you will be sitting on bar stools and eating off of a relatively slim counter.
For those that like a good crab, a good beer, great prices, and a nice view of the harbor without getting charged for that view in your prices, I wholeheartedly recommend Santa Barbara Shellfish Co.
I've got crabs.
Basically a dive with great food. Don't expect to be pampered, it's not a fancy pants restaurant. There's just a small bar that runs around the perimeter facing the wall and the stools unfortunately had no back support so I suffered from a really bad back ache about halfway through my meal. But the dungeoness crab was worth it. Maybe you figure 'well how do you screw up crab anyway?' That's what I figured and then I ate some at this more traditional style seafood restaurant in Pismo Beach and it was no where near as good as the one I had at the Shellfish Co.
In summary I really recommend it and I can't wait to go back.
BAD SERVICE,BAD FOOD. I saw this restaurant on the food network and decided to try it out. Well, I was very dissapointed at their service and their food. The waitresses lack customer service skills while the chef had to point them to the window where we had been waiting for over ten minutes to order food. Thats when she finally came to take our order and still was very unpleasant. When we went inside the restaurant , no one greeted us either. The food was overpriced for what we received and the odor that filled the air was very unpleasant. I would not recommend this restaurant to anyone!