Finch & Fork: Comfort Food In The Heart Of Santa Barbara
This post is for the locals:
Step aside from the typical beach-style joint and join the urban warriors for a drink and a bite at the rustic chic lounge in the heart of the city at Finch & Fork.
Forget what you know about Coast’s – Finch & Fork’s predecessor – previous old fogie, ho-hum style. This space has undergone a quarter life crisis and come out the other side better for it. Gone are the days of the repetitive watered down, citrusy poolside cocktails and typical hotel food. There’s about to be a new favorite spot in town.
We were recently invited to taste a few of the new menu items at this well-hidden restaurant inside Canary Hotel and report back to the masses what we had and what we liked. So, we stopped by during happy hour to get a feel for the place and wound up staying for dinner.
Now, first things first. There’s bar food and there’s food that is served at a bar. This place is the kind that happens to serve really good food at a bar.
We sort of fell in love with their Chipotle Smoked Hummus dip served with grilled brioche. (They also serve gluten-free bread upon request.)
Their list of happy hour comfort foods on the menu was enough for us to stay at that bar all night, but we’re not ones to pass up the opportunity for a well-made cocktail. So, we tried both the gin Pine Royal and tequila Habla Nada.
The Pine Royal, while devastatingly sweet, is worth ordering just to witness the pomp and circumstance of the concoction’s process. Served with a fire roasted rosemary sprig, this drink serves up a savory feast for the olfactory system and honeyed sips for the taste buds.
Now before you tell us you’re not a big tequila fan, hear us out. This drink is far from tasting like that one night you had in college and is definitely not something you’re likely to go all “rage face” on. This smokey, sweet strawberry-infused mixture tastes like camping in the summertime, but without all the effort of schlepping your gear to the great outdoors.
After filling up on the deceptively “small” portion of hummus, we made our way around the bar and into the dining room where we sank bank into coma-inducing high back booths for orders of the tasty Two Bit Burger.
And don’t even get us started on the Garlic & Herb Fries with roasted jalapeno aioli! Needless to say, we’ll be going back to try a few more things on the menu.
If you’re looking for a place that feels like the big city, but without all the urbane hustle and bustle this place is a definite must try. And if you remember all too well what used to be, go on and give it another try. We think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.