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    Posted November 24, 2012 by
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    100 places to eat like a local

    Sea food & eat it.

    I live in Los Angeles and am always dieting (it goes with the territory). Needing a break from coffee and green goddess smoothies...I took an excursion up to Santa Barbara with another dieting friend. Our motto: We will see food & eat it.

    Hitting traffic on the 101 caused us to jump right into lunch upon arrival. My partner in "dieting crime" had yelped a few places and we were headed to Arch Rock Fish in Santa Barbara.

    We ordered beer steamed mussels, fried ipswich clams (I'm an East Coaster...I'll be judge), clam chowder, a lobster roll and recommended by our server...cioppino. Sounds like a lot, I know, but it's all seafood right, how much crime can we be committing?

    While everything had incredible flavor, lobster roll with a lemony kick, the texture of the plump mussels was sublime, clam chowder had an abundance of clams (just enough salt) and the Ipswich clams passed my "East Coast test".

    Then there was the cioppino...holy moly. Plenty of lobster, shrimp, mussels, bass and tuna swimming in a broth of the freshest tomato and herbs I have ever tasted. The dish was bright, vibrant and hearty. We could not get enough. It almost seemed like we were not committing a "diet crime", so we asked for some bread to lap up every bit.

    If this is the way locals eat, I am moving here.

    Thank you server, whose name I have forgotten in my food extravaganza, for introducing me to this zesty, savory and perfectly balanced cioppino.

    Check it out at www.archrockfish.com.
    This iReport is part of an assignment that we created with Travel + Leisure:  100 places to eat like a local
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