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Bistro Savannah, Elizabeth's, Gottlieb's

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I will be in Savannah for two days, which means only two dinners. From what I can tell from these extraordinarily informative boards, all of these will be excellent, but I'm wondering if any of the three have a particularly special place in the Savannahian heart. I used to be a pastry chef, so if any of these have particularly outstanding desserts, please let me know!

For breakfasts and lunches, I have Skyler's, Mrs. Wilkes, Wall BBQ, Mom & Nikki's, and Clary's written down as possibilities. I'm excited to see and dine in your beautiful city!

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  1. I actually think Gottlieb's closed...that's what my friend who was just at SCAD said, but you might want to double check. They have a website...anyway I would def. go there, esp. for dessert. I have not been to Elizabeth's but I heard it wasn't as good as its reputation. I don't know anything about Bistro Savannah.
    I've been to Il Pasticcio...it was ok, but expensive and the gelato had been sitting in the freezer for too long (think months). I went to the Olde Pink House and that had very good food. For breakfast and lunch, Firefly Cafe is supposed to be good.

    1 Reply
    1. re: izzizzi

      Ah, upon further research I see Gottlieb's has closed--well, that takes care of the dinner dilemma! (Il Pasticcio looks good, but I'm from New York so eat global food all the time--I want some American food, darnit!)

      Thank you!

    2. I just saw you had Clary's on your list...I went there and it wasn't really good, if you're an eclair fan, they're are gigantic. Look at these two websites:
      www.roadfood.com and www.hollyeats.com

      4 Replies
      1. re: izzizzi

        Ah, nevermind, then (I try to avoid overly touristy places but was simply charmed by the description of Clary's in "the book"). Upon further research I've found a couple of other breakfast/lunch places--Desposito's and The Breakfast Club--so I'll likely be going there. Thank you!

        1. re: plumerai

          Hey! How did you hear about these restaurants?

          1. re: raharris

            Hear what about the restaurants?

            1. re: raharris

              Someone on these boards recommended a board called http://www.savannahoffthebeatenpath.com and they had these two restaurants mentioned; the others I mentioned are sprinkled all about the boards.

        2. Can you let us know what you think post-trip? Am headed down there myself soon and have some of the same questions about where to go.

          1 Reply
          1. re: keech6

            Will do!

          2. Bistro 45 is also a good choice. George's on Tybee & North Beach Grill on Tybee for lunch or a light dinner.

            2 Replies
            1. re: beteez

              Excellent, thanks! Everyone says to stay away from the Crab Shack without saying what a good alternative is, so if I hit Tybee I'll go to North Beach Grill.

              1. re: plumerai

                I love the crabshack!

            2. Elizabeth on 37th. Hands down!

              1 Reply
              1. re: chickstein

                Looking forward to it! Thanks.

              2. We had a wonderful dinner at Bistro Savannah a couple of months ago. Food, service and ambiance were top notch.

                2 Replies
                1. re: pilches

                  Great! That's going to be my first dinner there. Thank you.

                  1. re: pilches

                    We ate at Bistro Savannah this week (our first trip to the city). The service was very good and the ambience was pleasant... not too snooty, not too stuffy, not too casual. Very comfortable with just enough formality to let you know you're in a nice place. The menu is "American" with a selection of beef, chicken, fish, and pasta dishes. I started with an excellent small appetizer plate of steamed clams in a white wine broth. I wished it could have been my main meal. My SO had a grilled tomato salad and was surprised that the cooked tomatoes had been chilled, which was not bad, but unexpected.

                    Fresh bread was heavily salted on top of the crust and had a nice herb flavor. The waiter pours olive oil and then puts a large dollop of shaved parmesan in the center of the oil plate. I loved the bread and oil, but felt the parmesan covered up the taste of the herbs in the bread.

                    For entrees, we shared a salmon that was cooked very nicely, with a lightly seared surface that kept the fish moist and flavorful. We also shared a Wagyu sirloin that was cut in thin slices and topped with a puree of herbs and garlic. I didn't think the puree complemented the meat.

                    We didn't have room for dessert, but as I recall, the options included a creme brulee, a flambeed berry mixture over pound cake, an ice cream sundae with berries in a praline cup, and a flourless chocolate torte. Wines were a varied lot, including a few varietals picked from all the major international wine growing regions. There were about six options each of reds and whites by the glass. Most glasses were $6.50, but I had a good Steele Pinot Noir for $11 (which is a bit steep for a restaurant without a view!)

                    We both felt the meal was good and there was nothing to complain about, but that it didn't stand out in the memory as a great dining experience comparable to the SF/Chicago/NYC circuit (Which would hardly be expected going in... This is Savannah, not an international food destination after all, but some reviews might set you up for unreasonable expectations).

                    Note that if you order beef, doneness follows "fine dining" protocol, which can shock some people. Medium is still nicely pink inside and medium rare is quite underdone. Rare at this restaurant is for the adventurous carnivore only.

                  2. my son goes to school in hilton head, so we have been to savannah a lot recently. elizabeth is still very, very good. in the historic district, try alligator soul, very good food and good music. haven't been to paula deans place, but it always smells good.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: stevenpol

                      Thank you! Maybe I'll try Alligator Soul for a little late-night something...

                    2. A little off topic - what happened to Jean Louise in Savannah? we dined there many times over the years and have recently found out they closed. Did they move on or just get burned out? It was really one of my all time favorite places to go. If any locals are reading, I would appreciate an update - Thanks

                      1. We've had three exquisite meals at Sapphire Grill.

                        Also, Clary's, as a few have mentioned, is Not All That. Just your basic breakfast diner, though passable. Snag an outside table on a nice day.

                        1. We had a really nice lunch at Soho South Cafe on Liberty Street. I believe they have a website. It was recommended to us by our B&B owner, Dr. Wall of the Stephen Williams House. We also ate at Sapphire Grill, which I would recommend.