SBMA Welcomes New Café Operators Focused on the Art of Food

April 7, 2014 — The Santa Barbara Museum of Art is pleased to announce that Fire & Ice Events is the new operator for the Museum Café, with a vision that is a celebration of the Art of Food — rich in worldly flavors, hand-crafted coffee, and a complete artisan experience for all guests. The new eatery is now open with regular hours of Tuesday – Sunday, 11 am – 3 pm and 1st Thursdays 11 am – 8 pm.

Fire & Ice Events was created in the heart of Santa Barbara with a vision far beyond. Its 20-year experience of crafting remarkable events for private clients, local businesses, production companies, museums, and national charities lends itself to creating artful, flavorful cuisine that emphasizes fresh, seasonal ingredients and personalized service. The menu highlights seasonal ingredients sourced from local farms and purveyors with new menu items complementing new exhibitions on view at the Museum.

Examples of the Fire & Ice Museum Café menu include salads, soups, sandwiches, (including chicken banh mi, croquet-monseiur panini, and grilled market vegetable), tasting platters that include cheese, hummus, fruits, olives and flatbread, and both savory and sweet pastries. The eatery also boasts exclusive single source coffee from the El Imposible region of El Salvador. A full menu is posted on the Museum website at

Peter Sonderegger, Fire & Ice’s “Creative Director”, comments, “We are so pleased to bring our philosophy of recreating, reinventing, and reimagining artful and flavorful cuisine to the Santa Barbara community, especially via the prestige of the Santa Barbara Museum of Art.”

The café at the Museum has been closed for about two months after the previous operator, Brenda Simon, decided to focus more effort on her catering business. “We are excited to find a new operator that will continue the tradition of providing an excellent culinary experience to Museum visitors.” states Georgia McDermott, SBMA Retail and Visitor Services Manager.

The beginnings of Fire & Ice were established by Sonderegger as a young boy, sharing a fascination for Julia Childs and the art of food with his influential older sister. Several years later, he reconnected with his sibling in the kitchen of the Phillips Collection Cafe and the Design Cuisine Catering, both in Washington DC. It was with Design Cuisine that he gained knowledge of the special event industry, catering exclusively to the “who’s who” of the political world. Sonderegger moved to Santa Barbara in 1989 and was hired as Catering Manager for Connoisseur Catering at the Santa Barbara Polo Club. Working closely with Chef Owner Frank Miller, he planned and executed fundraising events, weddings, and dining for celebrity polo matches and members private dining room. He founded Fire & Ice Events in 1994 and has since established it in the Santa Barbara community on a reputation of quality ingredients and service.

The Santa Barbara Museum of Art is a privately funded, not-for-profit institution that provides internationally recognized collections and exhibitions and a broad array of cultural and educational activities as well as travel opportunities around the world.

Santa Barbara Museum of Art, 1130 State Street, Santa Barbara, CA

Open Tuesday – Sunday 11 am to 5 pm, Chase Free Thursday Evenings 5 – 8 pm



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