216 W Cabrillo Blvd, Santa Barbara, CA | Directions 9310134.409887 -119.692172
Neighborhoods: West Beach
Nice Cheap Breakfast – This is a cozy cheap place by the water that has very tasty breakfasts. I love the scrambles that they have and the pancakes are buttery and good. Sometimes the wait is a little long, but it's worth it especially because it's not over priced because it's on the water.
Nice local breakfast place – We were visiting Santa Barbara & wanted to try a local hangout and indeed we did with Sambo's. Above the register is a hardbound reprint of the original storybook, written in the 1920's. The original mascot was politically incorrect which led to changes to the current cartoonish character. But, you can read the original childrens' storybook in less than 5 mins just standing next to the register. The classic sambo's corned beef hash/eggs was made with real corned beef, not the mushy, dogfood canned type. The portion was huge with hashed browns, toast and 2 pancakes. Thought the pancakes were ok, not great. Our teenager couldn't finish the whole thing, if you can believe that! I loved my California Benedict with 2 muffins, covered with 2 poached eggs, tomaotes, avocado and cheese and a delicious Hollandaise sauce, the regular Eggs Benedict was equally good. Our waitress was friendly, perky & smiling the whole time, someone who enjoyed her job. You can buy t-shirts, magnets, cups, and Sambo's souvenirs if you want. It is after all, the original and the last one!
Smoke and a Pancake .... A good Pancake – The food was incredible. But before I discuss the food, the service was horrendous. We had to deal with the most snotty hostess who said it would take 10-15 minutes to be seated and it took them 45 minutes to seat us. Then the stupid hostess skipped our name on the waiting list, then when we asked her about it, she said snottily, "we do the best we can". It's ok that she is passed around the restaurant staff, but comeon, why can't they hire someone with an iq higher than the beach sand surrounding her.
The food was great and I highly recommend the pancakes.
Welcome back to childhood with pancakes and butter with a story. – Call me a rebel for giving four stars or politically incorrect for recommending a restaurant, the last of its kind, with its contraversial name and food stories. But if you were a California child of the late 60's and 70's like me then you can take a step back through time merely by ordering off the same pancake menu items as then. Please be sure to try the special "whipped" butter that comes with. My eyes said this is a different restaurant than my childhood but I had no idea how strongly my palatte would tell me this was exactly the same "panny cake" breakfast (my own special childhood word) as the ones I ate with my grandma on special babysitting mornings with her. If you don't like it oh, well. Guess you had to be there at 5 years old...
Nostalgic – I have fond memories of eating at Sambos as a child, so when I noticed it close to our hotel, I knew where I was eating breakfast. The food was good and if you are lucky you can have a seat with a view of the harbor. I ordered the pancakes and they were great. Our waiter was very nice and pretty knowledgeable about the history of sambos, which was cool.
A decent sandwich and view – We sat down out front mid afternoon on a Thursday with a great view of the Harbor.
Lunch was average to good, food was tasty, portions were large and decently priced. The mini muffins came right out and though they were tasty they were also chewy and didn't taste fresh. The onion rings were huge greasy and delicious. No one at our table remarked on the food other than we ate it without too much complaint or joy. On the whole Sambo's relieved our hunger in a forgettable sort of way.
Forgetable and completely average. I would try somewhere else before going back.
Good eats – We didn't even have to wait that long to be seated...they start you off with some fresh-baked mini-muffins...they were so tasty but we had to kinda stop eating them or else we wouldn't finish our meal!
My boyfriend got breakfast, which was excellent..the pancakes were fluffy and had a great taste....i chose lunch and they had some great, refresshing coices..my chicken tacos were very tasty and big...
the fresh fruit was good and fresh...parking was easy adn the place was right across from the harbor...
interesting name... – My friend wanted to go here because of the politically incorrect name. There was about a half hour wait for weekend brunch time. Pancakes were decent if a little pricey, you can also pick out a souvenir from their menu.
Sketchy Name, but still the same. – Wow, I've been going to this S@mbo's since I was at least 10 years old, maybe longer. The place is still the same. Nothing has changed (well perhaps management). I would compare the food to something a little better than Denny's. I've only been to this place for breakfast only, and it's really good. Pankcakes, Waffles, Hashbrowns, etc. All yummy and worth makin' a stop trying this place out.
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