Trip Report (Charleston)
I asked for help a few weeks ago as we prepared to visit Charleston (under the title "Thrilled to be Visiting Charleston later this month!"). You generously shared your tips and we had a wonderful trip.
Here's my report regarding where we ate:
It was absolutely wonderful! Fabulous food and service. We had:
***fettuccine with duck leg ragout, poached farm egg, and chanterelles. We used their very good bread to sop up every last speck of this wonderful dish.
***flounder grenobloise--flounder with yukon gold puree and fall vegetables. This was good, but I thought the yukon puree did not work especially well with the fish plus it seemed a little grainy.
***veggie side of filet beans, turnips nardello peppers with mint pesto---TO DIE FOR
We shared a slice of coconut cake at PAGE'S OKRA GRILL later that night.
TOMATO SHED for lunch. We had crab cakes, tomato pie, mac and cheese, cuke-tomato-and-onion salad, roasted okra, sweet potatoes, and butterbeans. All were wonderful. Finished off with a slice of coconut cake that was excellent. I could eat here every day :0)
BOWEN'S ISLAND for shrimp and a glass of wine at sunset. Stunning sunset. I can still see it when I close my eyes. What a fun place.
DAVE'S CARRYOUT for lunch---bbq ribs, shrimp, red rice and collards. Fantastic. Those were the best collards I have ever had! We loved this lunch.
JESTINE'S for a bowl of banana pudding. Very mediocre :0(
We were so full we ate no dinner.
Farmers' Market in the morning where we bought Carolina Gold Rice and Sea Island Red Peas. Then we headed to HOMINY GRILL for brunch:
***shrimp and grits
***sausage gravy and biscuits
Okay, honestly, I was not thrilled although my husband loved the food and would have gone back the next day. I may be a little too fussy, but both dishes should have been served hotter; it seemed like they were plated and then left sitting for too long before they were served to us. Also, I expect good coffee at brunch and the coffee was only average. DH, however LOVED the shrimp and grits and proclaimed the sausage gravy "amazing."
FAT HEN for lunch--
BBQ Beef/Mac and Cheese Open Face---good
Monte Cristo with meatloaf---horrifying! I should have sent it back. I noticed on an older menu that I had printed off from the web that it was previously called "Fried Meatloaf Sandwich" which was a much more accurate name. The bread was drenched in fat and tasted like bad "state fair on a stick food." That being said, I think I did not order carefully so I share some of the blame. (But truly, that dish should be taken off the menu!)
I also took a class on Low Country Cooking at CHARLESTON COOKS. I loved this class. The instructor prepared three dishes for us and discussed the origins of Low Country foods.
We loved Charleston and plan to return. There are so many more good restaurants and lovely places to visit.
Thanks again for your help. YOU GUYS RULE!
I was floored by F.I.G.'s awesomeness when we were at Wild Dunes in August. So glad you had a great trip and your belly is full of amazing dishes. I've tried to replicate the F.I.G. fish stew a couple of times since I have been home - the second attempt was definitely better thanks to the aioli I didn't make the first time; it definitely is the magic component.
My wife and I were in Charleston for the PGA Championship this past August and F.I.G. was amazing. My wife and I were split between which was better, F.I.G. or Husk... she preferred F.I.G. and I preferred Husk by a slim margin.
Can't wait to get back down there.
Great report, soccermom13. You made some great restaurant choices. F.I.G. never disappoints. I am so sad that you had a bad meal at Fat Hen! It's one of my top 3 favorite spots in the Charleston area. I've never had either of the dishes you described. What a shame.
I've never heard good things about Jestine's (at least not from folks I trust) so I've never gone... and don't think I ever will. Too many other delicious choices.
Glad that overall you had some really great food. Cheers!