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Here, on the Central Coast of California, BBQ has always meant grilling over an open fire of red oak, a style of cooking that is native to our area and goes back to the days of the Spanish Rancheros.

Sideways. A film by Alexander Payne

Two friends, Miles and Jack (Paul Giamatti and Thomas Haden Church) who set out to spend a weekend together before Jack's wedding. Along the way Maya (Virginia Madsen) and Stephanie (Sandra Oh) come into their lives.

And it just so happens that Maya is a waitress right here at the Hitching Post.


Miles and Jack Toasting at the HP
• Wines
• Winery
• Sales

The Buellton Hitching Post II was established in 1986, but our roots started at the Casmalia Hitching Post in 1952. It was there, at our now sister restaurant, that Frank & Natalie Ostini brought "Santa Maria Style BBQ" to its peak of perfection and where children Bill, Bob, Terri & Annette continue to this day.

Here at the Hitching Post II in Buellton, we honor that tradition and also embrace the contemporary cooking styles.

By combining the old and the new, we have created an exciting cuisine that is uniquely our own. Along with our outstanding steaks, ribs and chicken, we also serve items such as smoked duck breast, ostrich, home-made soups and outstanding pastries; along with what the Los Angeles Times has called the "best" French Fries in Southern California!

We are also one of a very few restaurants creating our own (world class) wines for sale in the restaurant and to the public. Hartley Ostini Hitching Post Wines have garnered an excellent reputation. Try them here or at home World's Best BBQ

Have a hankering for HP cuisine and can't get here? If you live within a hundred miles or so, you can call on us. We'll bring our famous grills, ingredients and food and we'll cater your event. Read a lot about our "Magic Stuff" here.

The Los Angeles Times, creating a Food Lovers Feast list of restaurants included The Hitching Post II as one of "75 sublime reasons to dine out." The Times has also named our specially made French Fries the best in Southern California! 

Sunset MagazineSunset Magazine knows the "West's Best BBQ Town and which are the best of the area.Of  course you'll find the Hitching Post. 

Our own owner says: "We think of Santa Maria barbecue as a flavor on its own,” says Frank Ostini, the exuberant owner of The Hitching Post II. At a glassed-in pit in the dining room, he grills all kinds of things over red oak: beef steaks and chops, but also quail, duck, pork, shrimp, lobster, and artichokes. “We wood-smoke red peppers and tomatoes and mix them with mayonnaise for our grilled artichokes,” he says. “We’ve wood-smoked hops for beer."

Read all about it here.

Watch a 90 second movie about us! It uses the free Quicktime viewer and can be viewed in large format (11 megabytes) or small format (3 megabytes).

You can find our sister restaurant, the Hitching Post in Casmalia, here.

Tommy Meets Hitching Post II Owner, Frank Ostini - Ep 2.01

Standing along the road outside of the Hitching Post II, owner Frank Ostini welcomes host, Tom Powers to his world famous restaurant. They discuss the profound impact the film "Sideways" had on the restaurant's business. Explore more of the cultural world of food and wine at

Hitching Post Winemaker Discusses 4 of His Best Wines - Ep 2.02

Frank discusses four of his favorite wines from the Hitching Post portfolio. He explains why it's time to start drinking dry rose. Explore more of the cultural world of food and wine at

Three Killer Food & Wine Pairings at The Hitching Post - Ep 2.03

Frank Ostini, owner of The Hitching Post II explains how to pair grilled artichoke, quail and steak with his wines. The segment will give some fundamental cooking tips on preparing these gorgeous dishes. So get your wood out, burn a clean fire, sprinkle some Magic Dust on your food and get busy! Explore more of the cultural world of food and wine at

Rated #40 (tie) in The Daily Meal's 101 Best Restaurants in America

We take great pride in the fact that so many customers, from near and far, keep coming back to dine with us. The Hitching Post, a family tradition in the beautiful Santa Ynez Valley and beyond!

406 E. Highway 246
Buellton, California

We are open daily except major holidays. Cocktails and wine tasting begins at 4 p.m. We serve dinners only, from 5-9:30 p.m. Call for reservations, or use our instant
on-line reservation system.

Frank Ostinii at the Grill

Frank Ostini
Chef, Winemaker & Proprietor

Bradley Lettau
Executive Chef

Jesus Montano
Sous Chef

Anne Twig
Desserts & Wine