Summerland, the seaside haven located between Carpinteria and Montecito, is a two-exit town home to antique stores, shops, and eateries. In 2019, Field + Fort opened its doors on the east end of Lillie Avenue as a decor shop and cafe dedicated to “essentials of elevated living.” Featuring menu items like shakshuka, savory porridge, and sweet bread pudding – it’s no surprise that this spot has become a local’s favorite.
WHERE THE STORY BEGINS
Nearly two years after the closure of Cantwell’s, Field + Fort transformed the 5,000 sq. ft. space into a white California cottage-style showpiece with effortless curb appeal. The building has been completely remodeled, including the addition of a commercial kitchen, which started as a coffee bar that quickly evolved into a cafe. Recruiting renowned chef, Austin Moore, their menu is widely respected as Summerland’s best.
Owners Kyle Irwin and Susie Bechtel worked together on several projects before their latest venture, usually large-scale luxury interior design projects, but always had plans to open a retail store together. Filled with a mixture of antiques and specialty home goods, a celebrated mix of their curated taste, visitors are surrounded by one-of-a-kind offerings.
Using local produce and organic products, the menu continues to expand seasonally, including a variety of breakfast and lunch items. Coined “The Feast,” you’re challenged to decide between gourmet avocado toast, frittata, farmers’ market salads, and sandwiches, or in-house baked goods. Croissants and bread can also be found at “The Baker’s Table.” There are also rumors of future plans to offer dinner and take-home meals.
Once guests order, they’re invited to sit outside at several lounge chairs or tables. For those looking to eat inside, they can sit at a long communal dining table – which is actually an antique from a convent in France. “It’s been really special to watch people gather here and reconnect with each other. That was always our goal: to offer a gathering space,” Irwin told The Santa Barbara Independent.
OTHER UPCOMING LOCAL RESTAURANTS
Our Santa Barbara and Montecito community continues to expand with new improvements, restaurants, and shops. At The Ebbin Group, we have a finger on the pulse. For other recommendations about upcoming local spots, contact our team at [email protected].