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Aug 7, 2009 10:53 AM

Folly Beach/Charleston, SC - Great local seafood restaurants and fresh seafood market recommendations

We'll be staying in Folly Beach next week and are looking for:

-a great, locally owned fresh seafood market. We will be cooking at home most of the time and want a great place the locals would go to.

-a great, locally owned seafood restaurant. We want something that's not too touristy, not all fried, not too fancy (we'll have our 2 year old with us), but not so kid-friendly that the food is no good. Someplace where you can get a lovely piece of local fish or a delicious local crab cake for $20-ish. Last time we had dinner in Charleston, we ended up in a too-touristy, fried place that served me a moldy lemon with my meal. Trying to avoid that!

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  1. The seafood market you're looking for is Crosby's - it's at 2223 Folly Road, just before you hit the island of Folly Beach.

    As for restaurants, the Folly Beach seafood restaurants tend to be very touristy and very fried. You can search for seafood restaurants in Charleston on this board, there have been plenty of discussions. On that side of town, I'd recommend Charleston Crab House on Wappoo Creek Drive (good view, reasonable prices. the dishes are not real inventive generally but I've had some good meals.)

    15 Replies
    1. re: General Knowledge

      Another place you might like is called the Wreck of the Richard and Charlene. Do a google on it and see what you think. It is ramshackle with GREAT food.

      1. re: lamesa

        Was down in Charleston for the past week and ate dinner at The Wreck of the Richard and Charlene just last night. As usual, it was hands-down the best fried seafood you can get anywhere. I always go for the triple combo. platter (although you can get an even larger plate with fish as well). All the seafood is super-fresh and clearly local. Love the pairing of red rice and cabbage slaw, and the hushpuppy is to die for.

        Skip all the neon-lit touristy places and go to The Wreck. The dining area itself is on a concrete slab, and enclosed via screens. Last night, the seabreeze was blowing through the place, you could hear the birds and seagulls outside, a thunderstorm in the distance. wow, such a perfect setting.

        I'd drive down from North Carolina just to have dinner there.

        1. re: mikeh

          If you're looking for ramshackle with great food, you can find it closer to Folly than The Wreck. Bowen's Island is amazing! Super fresh and super delicious, but there is nothing fancy about it at all. In fact, you'll probably think the ragtag collection of shack-like buildings should be condemned....until you taste the food! There's nothing like sitting on the creek, watching the dolphins, and eating the
          freshest shrimp you've ever tasted! If you Google it, you can find more reviews and directions, because it's basically at the end of a dead-end dirt road.

          1. re: BetsyinKY

            I've been for the oyster roast where they dump the burlap sack on tables and you dig in with your shucking knife, but how do they do it in the off-season with shrimp and other seafood? It's it sit-down at picnic tables?

            1. re: mikeh

              You go in the one room with the cash register and order and pick up your drink. Then you go find a place to sit, either in the big open room or out on the end of the dock at a table. Then they bring you a tray of food when it's ready.

          2. re: mikeh

            question for the Wreck fans: when I was on IOP with my parents last year, they really didn't enjoy my choices: Fig and Cru. They are apparently imtimidated if there are menu choices they are unfamiliar with and also seem unhappy and annoyed by a la carte menus. For some reason my Dad can't seem to grasp ordering a salad rather than having one automatically brought to him...dont' get me started...

            So this year I think they might like something a little more traditional beach Dad has a heart condition and can't eat (very much) fried food. there anything you think he'd enjoy at the Wreck? They tend to go for broiled scallops and stuff like that. thanks.

            1. re: danna

              Checking their menu it looks like they will broil their fish and grill their shellfish and shrimp. It's pretty darn rustic and may be a little warm for your dad. Maybe a call to them would be in order.

              >For some reason my Dad can't seem to grasp ordering a salad rather than having one automatically brought to him...

              My folks are the same way. It's vexing.


              1. re: Cpt Wafer

                thanks! I think that looks like something they'll like. So you're saying there's no a/c at all?

                Actually, Daddy's in good shape. He's the poster boy for diet and excercise. Heart attack at 55, followed by my Mom's hawk-like monitoring of his fat intake, daily walks, and now, at 74 he plays golf 4 times a week.

                so here's to grilled seafood! (hold the butter)

                1. re: danna

                  Sounds to me like he's good to go. Not sure exactly what the HVAC situation there is but I've never been uncomfortable and I like it cool.

                2. re: Cpt Wafer

                  "My folks are the same way. It's vexing."

                  Let me attempt to clarify: They don't like shelling out ten dollars for a salad?

                  1. re: observor

                    And allow me to retort: Someone that lays out $20,000 for a custom made Persian rug is not worried about the price of a salad. That's why it's vexing.

                3. re: danna

                  Hi Danna!

                  Sigh, my father is the exact same way, he still mocks FIG to this day. I just hope something like this isn't genetic. ;-)

                  It's been awhile since I have been to The Wreck, but I thought I would add another restaurant into the mix, SeeWee Restaurant. I don't know if you have ever been, but it is comparable to The Wreck and I also think it is better. Their menu is extensive for a seafood place, all seafood can be ordered grilled with your choice of seasoning, and their sides are great, especially the collards. Also as a southern girl, you might appreciate they make their own desserts including coconut cake with 7 minute frosting, hard to get around here, and caramel cake, but you have to get there early before they run out. It is in Awendaw, 10 minute drive from North Mt. P or a 20 minute drive from the IOP connector, but it is on 17 and easy to find.


                  1. re: lizzy

                    uh oh! I think i'd rather inherit Dad's heart disease than his willingness to eat at Red Lobster ;-)

                    Thanks...are the sides good at SeeWee? if so, it looks like my husband would love it. And I am the queen of coconut cake, so I always enjoy seeing another version. (fie on Pennisula Grill's attempt)

                    1. re: danna

                      The sides are good at SeeWee. I enjoy the collards and the fried green tomatoes, and my fiance enjoys the mac and cheese and the green beans. They also have nightly specials, including side specials, if memory serves me right those tend to be more seasonal sides. Fyi, if you truly are interested in the coconut cake I would call before you go because the desserts change daily.

                4. re: mikeh

                  Are children welcomed there? They say they don't offer a childrens menu.

            2. ditto crosby's for seafood.

              I've never had much luck dining on Folly. You could drive in to Al Di La, fantastic Italian just on the Folly side of downtown. Or come on into downtown and eat at FIG, and make sure you get fish. Wahoo is local and it was superb last time I was there.

              3 Replies
              1. re: danna

                Al Di La is amazing and located in West Ashley, not Folly Beach: different bridge, much closer to town.

                FIG was a profoundly frustrating experience for us, detailed in a previous post. Our fish there was just plain awful. Should have sent it back. Instead, we won't go back.

                1. re: uptown jimmy

                  I'm well aware of where Al Di La is. I mean to say that when one is coming from Folly, one gets to Al Di La before getting to slightly quicker and easier than going to the historic district.

                  Although I suppose it's not the greatest rec. since upon re-reading the OP seems to be specific in wanting a seafood restaurant. I suppose Hanks and Cru Cafe would be my other suggestions in Chas for fish.

                  1. re: danna

                    Still think your Al Di La location description was confusing. Especially for someone who isn't well aware of where the restaurant is located. And it's a truly great restaurant, anybody who hasn't gone there, well gosh-darn-it you need to go there now.

                    On Folly, we love Bowen's Island and Taco Boy, but that's some pretty casual fare.

              2. I bet I know exactly which touristy moldy place you went to!

                The Wreck is great, and right on the shrimp boat dock-fun for kids. The Seewee is great too. The fried eggplant makes me want to burst into song. The Mustard Seed has an extensive menu that Danna's dad might enjoy.

                1. Thanks everyone for all the great suggestions. We shopped at Crosby's nearly every day and had many delicious meals using ingredients from there. We ended up having dinner at The Wreck. It was SO good and just the kind of place we had in mind. I loved the neighborhood it was located in, everyone was very friendly and not pretentious at all, and we really enjoyed ourselves. I will definitely be using this site again for finding good restaurants when we are traveling!

                  If you need suggestions for Asheville, let me know!