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An Epitaph for The Minnow Restaurant


This week there is a hole in my heart. After more than 20 years of operation, the Minnow Restaurant at the Santa Barbara Harbor has closed its doors. The Minnow was located on Harbor Way and was a gathering and meeting place for fishermen, yachties, old-timers, tourists and locals.

When my hubby and I moved to Santa Barbara, we bought a sailboat in the Harbor. We have made many friends that we met at The Minnow. We have had great conversations, learned about Santa Barbara and Harbor history and politics, and we have seen some very interesting people from a seat at the table by The Minnow. Whether during breakfast, lunch, or breaks we enjoyed the food and drink, the service, and the environment. Whenever friends came to town, at least one morning was spent eating breakfast at The Minnow.

Jeff Jones bought the Minnow over 20 years ago and turned it into a great little fast food restaurant. The menu was diverse enough to find something for everyone and the food was well prepared. Jeff and family (wife Gretchen and daughter Avery) spent many hours at The Minnow assuring good food, good service, and a clean eating environment. Jeff was a tough trainer with the staff, but those who worked at The Minnow knew how to do their jobs. Many of them have gone on to successful schooling and careers or jobs in other businesses. At the end of last year, Jeff sold The Minnow to Brophy Brothers. Changes were made and now The Minnow is closed.

We are hoping for good news to come out of this sad news. A new restaurant, Ty’s Cafe, is to open next spring. I am sure more changes will come. Hopefully these changes will provide the harbor community with a great place where old friends and new can enjoy the harbor environment, affordable quality food, and renew the camaraderie that will certainly be missed over this winter.

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