Tuesday, February 20 , 2018, 5:14 pm | Fair 56º


Tara Jones


Tara Jones: Staycation at Bacara’s Newly Renovated Ocean View Bar

I recently got back from a glorious two-week vacation, and while I immediately jumped right back into work, all I’ve been able to think about for the following weeks is how to go on another vacation.

So far I haven’t figured out a way to become insta-wealthy to feed my perpetual wanderlust and insatiable need to relax.

But I did discover a few ways to staycation (aka vacation at home), even if just for a few hours.

Bacara Resort in Goleta has a newly renovated bar that overlooks the ocean and Haskell’s Beach, which may not be that breezy place far away, but it’s good enough to get you in the vacation mood.

Long ago are the days of the walk-up wooden tiki hut for these guys. Mimicking a resort bar in Hawaii, the Bacara built their ocean front bar to five-star resort standards.

Tropical drinks are served on marble countertops, the likes of which are usually found only in Mexico or the Bahamas, and the views from the bar aren’t bad either.

If you want the resort-style afternoon without all that pesky travel time, chill out like an out-of-towner as you soak up the sun and sip an anacapa ginger, a refreshing mix of pineapple vodka, ginger, mint and lemon.

The specialty jamming tomatoes cocktail is a perfect sipper for an afternoon overlooking the ocean. (Tara Jones / Noozhawk photo)

And while the tropical drinks at this bar come standard, the real show stopper on the menu is the jamming tomatoes. One sip of this earthy concoction is like taking a walk through a vegetable garden and getting the spoils of the first fruits of the season without the labor.

With feet kicked up and drink in hand, order some small bites to keep the good times rolling.

Now I don’t know that I’ve ever paid $14 for spiced tortilla chips with salsa and guac, but then I’ve never been served what seemed like a bushel of chips either.

That being said, the ratio of chips to dips was not quite even. So, be sure to hit them up for additional dips that are refilled without charge.

The price for food and drink was double what I normally would have found in our bustling downtown area, but hey … I was on staycation.

Tara Jones leads Eat This, Shoot That! and welcomes reader tips and ideas for future columns. She can be reached at [email protected]. Click here for previous columns. The opinions expressed are her own.

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