Where: 1812 Cliff Drive, 805-962-0337, alcazartapasbar.com
What: Spanish themed menu and cocktails in a spirited atmosphere.
How much? Tapas $8-$16; Entrees $13-$26
The dish: Topping Santa Barbara’s list of hot spots for cocktails and Spanish tapas style dishes is Alcazar, whose unassuming surroundings on the Mesa make it a destination location. The tapas venue has a trendy intimate interior that gets packed and loud on weekends after 7 p.m. Graze on appetizers such as Bacon Wrapped Dates, Tamales Chiquitos, and Tequila Tofu, while sipping a hand-made Ginger Mojito. The full bar features a short wine list and cocktails made with freshly squeezed juices and no refined sugar. Entrees include a saucy Paella Alcazar (combines seafood and chorizo), Pescado Dulce (Halibut topped with zesty mango chutney), and Flame Broiled Filet Mignon. Sit at the cozy bar and watch the chef dart from one end of the open kitchen to the other dishing up steaming plate after plate. Alcazar also offers a catering menu if you are party-planning and want to enjoy their food in your own venue.