My Photo

Some interesting web sites

  • Sly's at
    Our restaurant web site with news, menus, hours, cocktail lists, wine list, and more.
  • Santa Barbara Chocolate
    A great source for fine chocolates and truffles, and the great organic chocolate that we use at Sly's
  • Chef Michael Hutchings
    Great catering, cooking classes and consulting in Santa Barbara, CA
    user reviews, simple layout, world class rep
    great shopping experience, easy reorder
  • Surfasonline
    Great source for everything from 8 ounces of quality chocolate to a complete restaurant worth of equipment.


One-Line Bio

A Chef/owner with forty-years experience and a passion for the restaurant business.


James Sly, Chef
James Sly and his wife are put the finishing touches on “Sly’s”, their epynomymous new restaurant in the sleepy coastal town of Carpinteria, California. In keeping with the focus of James’ cuisine over the years, “Sly’s” is a fine dining restaurant, featuring seafood, prime steaks and outstanding cocktails in a traditional approach. There’s an interesting twist in the wine selections, as the 2,000 bottle cellar features an equally balanced list of wines from California – and from France. The location is three blocks from the “World’s Safest Beach”, on Linden Avenue, in a 90-year old brick building.
Long a Santa Barbara Chef, James is proud to be a “dinosaur” of traditional, even old-fashioned cooking. James created Lucky’s in Montecito, and built it into a premiere steak house during its first seven years. He departed from Lucky’s in June of 2007, hatched plans for Sly’s and has been busy on the project ever since.
James’ training is strictly classical, his attitude 100% California. After an apprenticeship in California, James began his formal training in Europe, at the Hôtel Ritz in Paris, the Hôtel de Paris in Monte Carlo, and continued working with Michel Guèrard at Règine's in both Paris and New York.
James also spent several years working in private homes, cooking for among others, Her Imperial Highness, Princess Shams Pahlavi, the sister of the Shah of Iran in both Beverly Hills and in Cuernavaca, Mexico. James refined his craft at restaurants like the Summer House on Nantucket, in Washington, DC at the 1789 and The Watergate Hotel, and in Palm Springs at the Princess in the Dessert Princess and at Charlies’ in Grand Champions before coming to Santa Barbara, where he spent four years as Chef for the El Encanto Hotel before pursuing catering, restaurant consulting, and serving as a private chef in Montecito for Herb Simon. Mr. Simon was a partner in Lucky’s, a restaurant that took an often-failed location and made it into a profitable operation.
More now than ever, the value of simplicity in cooking plays an important part in James Sly's style. As a dinosaur, James’ approach to food features a strong classical base, frankness, and above all integrity. The cuisine is marked by both the use of top-quality ingredients - aged USDA prime steaks, fresh abalone, live Maine lobster and a slew of Farmer’s Market vegetables top the list - and more importantly, an intense respect for those ingredients. Sauces reflect James’ classic training, and bring a dimension to food that more simple approaches simply can’t compete with. An entertaining teacher, James comfortably shares his wealth of knowledge and experience with students and his employees, and concentrates on the basics that make such a big difference in quality food and a quality restaurant experience.
James has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Linguistics from California State University at Fullerton, is now reluctantly 56 years old, and is delighted to live- and work - in the sleepy beach town of Carpinteria, California.