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“Relaxing. Love the idea of it.”

Corktree Cellars Wine Bar and Bistro
Ranked #10 of 80 Restaurants in Carpinteria
Price range: US$8 - US$20
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Restaurant details
Good for: Groups, Special Occasion Dining
Dining options: After-hours, Lunch, Outdoor Seating, Reservations
Reviewed 15 January 2018

I struggled to come up with a rating. Part of me wanted 5... part of me wanted 2. I'll explain my thinking to why I settled on 3... but let me say this... you should definitely try it and just keep in mind what I learned from my experience and act accordingly. I think my next visit will pop up the rating a bit.

First off, the sign they had outside sold me... it was one of those chalkboard signs that read something like, "All you need is love. And wine. We have both... and lobster mac and cheese". That is a chalkboard from my own heart I'll tell you that. So my family and I visited. The staff was very nice right away. Very accommodating.

I was SO psyched to order a flight. And impressed by their flight options... they had 6 flights to choose from (3 white and 3 red)! I explained what I liked and they suggested "The Other Red Flight". The first wine was okay. Not great, not bad. But the other two were TERRIBLE! Like... awful. Two different varietals of wet dog. I asked to switch out those two with two from the Cab flight. They did so and it was like night and day! In fact, I'm definitely going to be purchasing a few bottles of the Robert Hall Cabernet Sauvignon! It was unreal. They're bottle prices weren't bad either (for take out), but this meal wasn't cheap so I couldn't swing it on this particular day. Lesson 1: Stay away from "The Other Red Flight" and go with the cabs!

My wife and son both enjoyed their meals. My wife's tacos she said were delicious, but I think they were overpriced for what she got. She seemed satisfied, but if it were me I would have been let down. As for me... I broke one of my personal rules: Never order lobster in California. I am from new England, and LOVE lobster. This seemed like a really legit place and I'm a sucker for lobster bisque wherever I am. So I ordered the lobster bisque and the lobster roll. The lobster bisque was DELICIOUS!!! It was that California orange instead of the traditional pink and it didn't have any lobster in it... so it was really like lobster flavored soup, but still... it was tasty! The roll wasn't a traditional lobster roll at all. I can't remember well enough to describe the differences. They were clearly trying to do a new take on it. However it was very tasty and a decent size. One of my complaints with many lobster rolls is that they are expensive and you get a glorified slider. However the size on this was great for the value. If it ended here... I would have given this place a 4 or higher. However... I'll spare you the details... but what it did to me that night... well... it brought it down quite a bit.

But who's fault was that for ordering lobster in CA? Lesson 2: Don't EVER order lobster in CA. So if you avoid both rules, I think you could have a wonderful time here with friends. It is pricey, but it has nice ambience and at least some excellent wine.

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Thank Michael T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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6 - 10 of 117 reviews

Reviewed 18 October 2017 via mobile

Others had a great experience, us not so much. Starting with: we were the first to be seated for lunch out on the patio, BUT we were the LAST to receive our food—huh? The waitress said she had placed our order on hold since my partner had a soup AND she forgot to tell the chef. OMG we were hungry.

We loved the lentil soup. But I’m here to tell you, they could have kept the rest of the meal in the kitchen (or garbage!) (see pics) To begin with, my partner ordered a Cobb salad. It came with mixed greens, half of which were rotted and yellow. It had chicken and way undercooked/raw bacon. I had a blackened salmon sandwich. Well I’m here to tell you, the salmon the shook out of the can was certainly canned and there was nothing blackened about it.

The waitress came to check on us and I let her know. She offered to redo it. I told here her I just wanted my blackened salmon. She went back and brought out the plate the size of a coffee saucer with a tiny piece of canned salmon with blackened spice. Nothing grilled about it (the Chopped judges would have had a hay day on that!) Again the waitress apologized and took our soup off the bill.

My sangria was so so. My partner had a Smashed Horse... Moscow mule with berries. Hers was good. But the FOOD was SOoooooooo disappointing. AND to top it all off, the chef went around to all the customers on the patio, BUT he never checked in or apologized to us. NADDA! Just saying all....

Thank Tundrachoochoo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 October 2017

Have been here several times now for lunch, the food is always great although the fries are just average when according to the menu are supposed to be something special. The salads are amazing, always super fresh produce. Kale and artichoke dip excellent, very cheesy. Could be served with better bread though (perhaps an excellent sourdough?)...sandwhiches are also excellent for the exception of the lobster roll which arrived hot....I somehow missed the description that it is served with melted cheese! IMO, you really cannot improve upon a TRADITIONAL lobster roll, so this was a disappointment, however my own fault for not reading the menu. I would not order it again. Service is erratic. It is a small town, and I don't expect to be rushed off, but the last time I went I didn't see my waitress for 15 minutes during lunch on a weekday, while my entire party was finished and waiting for the check. The wine helps in situations like that! ;) Overall, nothing to stop me from going back, just expect a leisurely lunch or dinner. Kid friendly.

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Thank DrivingOnly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 August 2017 via mobile

I brought a group of 6 friends here for lunch. I ate here a couple of months ago and had the lobster roll. It was good. I told everyone and 5 out of 6 of us ordered the lobster roll. The roll the sandwich was on was stale. So was my friend's next to me. I told the manager and he just walked away. I won't be recommending this restaurant again.

Thank tj212121
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 May 2017

We had a reservation on Mother's Day and were seated promptly. Can not visit this restaurant without having their Tomato Bisque! The first we enjoyed the tasty treat, I asked for a "bucket of it to go"!! We enjoyed appetizers as our meal and shared them between the 3 of us. Plenty for sharing! Service was great, lots of smiles and they kept checking our water and for dishes that could be cleared away. Come and enjoy a Carpenteria restaurant--doing it right!

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Thank ufdahgal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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