While it was sad for food-lovers in Santa Barbara in December 2008 when Savoy Café (24 W. Figueroa St.) closed, it was even worse for owner Paul Shields. “I walked away from Savoy penniless,” he said. “My wife and I lost everything: our home of nine years, our business, our dear employees, and all of our customers whom we’d befriended. It was as if our identity was erased.”
All that’s changed, though, and the Savoy is back, in its old spot, as of August 18. “Jim from Cantwell’s called me and said he really wanted me to have Savoy back, and I know he really meant it because of the way he has worked to see this business transaction through,” Shields explained. “He’s not the only one. A very dear friend has offered up operating capital. The landlord has welcomed me back, the vendors are being very encouraging, and many of our old employees want to be part of Savoy again. Humbled, encouraged, and grateful are probably appropriate responses here.”
As foodies will be, getting to enjoy breakfast to early dinner (Mon.-Fri., 7am-6pm; Sat., 8am-4pm), relishing old menu favorites like organic omelettes with Savoy greens, Kathy’s chocolate buttermilk cake, and seared wild salmon.