Cajun Kitchen has four locations in the area, but the below content refers specifically to the De La Vina location; while it’s very likely the quality is similar across the board, please take that into account when doing your own “examining.”
Santa Barbara can be a little less jealous of our friends in Louisiana, as the Cajun Kitchen, a longtime local favorite, serves up New Orleans-inspired cuisine for breakfast and lunch.
The fans of Cajun Kitchen’s breakfast seem to be especially rabid, and it’s easy to see why.
Take for instance these recent breakfast specials: A tri-tip Benedict, a wonderful Santa Barbaran take on the usually ham-accompanied dish. Or the jambalaya omelet with jack cheese; that’s actually jambalaya (rice, shrimp, sausage, and everything) thrown into a perfectly cooked omelet. A little odd, a little indulgent . . . and a lot of delicious.
Speaking of indulgent, on my most recent visit, I went with the Steve’s Special: two scrambled eggs, cheddar cheese, topped with Bourbon Street chili & sour cream, choice of toast & potatoes. Absolutely wonderful; while those bottles of hot sauce are beautiful and one hankers to use them, this chili needed no help at all. Perfect kick, perfect zing. Yet the eggs stood up to it. Color your Examiner impressed. At $7.85, it was well worth it. (Check out the slide show below to see for yourself!)
In fact, most breakfast dishes will run you about this much, maybe 50 cents less or a buck more, depending on what it is. Breakfast for two, with coffees, runs you about $25 including tax and tip. For a special, memorable breakfast or brunch, it’s a great option.
Speaking of memorable: you must ask for the spectacular apple butter and strongly consider choosing the corn bread as your bread option.
Now, the coffee . . .I can’t determine whether it’s specialty coffee or not. All I could glean was “it comes from Jordano’s,” which is a big food supplier/distributor operation here in the SB and surrounding counties. But I suspect it’s not specialty coffee. However, the Coffee at Cajun Kitchen it has the following in its favor: it’s served hot and frequently. No waiting around for; seems a fresh pot is always brewing. This cuts down on the staleness you’ll get at a typical diner or breakfast joint, especially high-turnover places. So, while the coffee itself is probably fair at best, Cajun Kitchen makes the most of it and there’s not cause to complain.
Cajun Kitchen (De la Vina location)
1924 De La Vina
Santa Barbara, Calif.
Open daily, 6:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.