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Oct 6, 2013 07:58 PM

Savannah: Foodie recs in Savannah

Hi fellow Chowhounds! I'm headed to Savannah after Thanksgiving and am looking for the 'foodiest' dining spots. No 'fancy' white table cloth / steak and potatoes / truffle oil places, but modern spots with delicious food and drinks like what Charleston has to offer these days. Based on the threads I've read, this is my list so far:

We'll have several lunches and dinners while we're there.

What am I missing?

Also, should we go to Tybee Island?

Thanks friends!

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    1. Based on my fairly limited knowledge, I think your list is pretty good. You might want to look into Garibaldi Cafe also.

      1. Sarah, great minds think alike. My wife and I will be in Savannah next week, and we plan on eating our way through the city.

        We will be driving up to Charleston, too, so would like recommendations along that corridor for a casual lunch.

        But I'm looking into the list you've created and it looks pretty good. Surely you've done a search on Savannah and have seen numerous other discussions?

        Thanks. I'll report back on any good spots we find.

        2 Replies
        1. re: EarlyBird

          While its much faster, I-95 makes you miss Beaufort. Right downtown is Griffin Market. (Goofy name, I know.) IMO, the best Italian in SC. Twenty or so seats and a million dollar wine collection.

          1. re: DaleJ

            Hi Dale,

            Thanks for the feedback. You'll see below that my wife and I just got back from our trip, and since we're from LA where we don't get the great seafood and down home Southern food you find on the coastal South, we focused on that while we were there.

            But we found Beaufort a beautiful city as well, and the local sea islands are glorious.

            Perhaps Sarah will check out Griffin Market and report back.

        2. Hi Sarah,

          My wife and I just got back from Savannah. What an historic, charming "Gone With the Wind" looking city surrounded by spectacular natural beauty of the tidal marshes and wooded islands. Just gorgeous!

          We were only there for three days, but here's what we liked:

          LOVED Sisters of the New South:

          We went to the one on Skidaway Blvd. twice, we loved it so much. This is down home Southern soul food. It is a very casual "meat and three" place where you place your order at steam tables and bring your food to your own table. We had perfect fried chicken and smothered pork chops, mellow collard greens, lima beans, creamy, cheesy mac 'n' cheese, and some of the best yams and dressing (i.e., turkey stuffing) we've ever had. Just fantastic.

          Get their peach cobbler, but be warned "the cobbler lady doesn't work on Wednesdays, and won't let anyone else make it but her."

          Huey's on River Street is pretty good.

          Their French onion soup is rich and perfectly seasoned, some of the best I've ever had. The crab stuffed flounder was cooked just right, but the crab made it a bit too rich. I had oysters on the half shell which make you think you're eating the ocean.

          We were staying at the Westin across the river and ate at Aqua Star, the only upscale place on our itinerary. Again had fresh oysters which rocked, and a grouper cooked perfectly in brown butter sauce and a creamy risotto. Came with carmelized, roasted root vegetables.

          Their she-crab soup is amazing: just pure, rich, liquid crab.

          We had breakfast there one morning and were disappointed. The service was very slow and disorganized. I got my food and it was cold. When I got it back warmed, it was way too salty (and I like salt). I commend them however for handling it very well, and in fact they comped our entire meal without me complaining too much.

          I discovered bourbon on this trip at the Westin's bar devoted to over 200 brands of bourbon. Friendly service and cozy place which has music on weekends.

          Leopold's Ice Cream is good. If you've had high quality ice cream before, however, it's not going to change your life.

          We were interested in the legendary Mrs.Wilkes Dining Room, but the when we saw the line out front - which is always there - we said "no thanks." If you've got time, however, check it out. It's supposed to be very good Southern food and highly praised even by locals:

          We drove up to Beaufort, SC and had lunch along the waterfront. Had a Ceasar salad that was nothing to write home about except that it actually contained anchovies (yes!) and had it with six fried oysters which were perfection.

          But here's the thing: wherever you go, focus on the seafood. It's so fresh and will likely be very well prepared wherever you go. I went nuts on fresh and fried oysters, crab soup, flounder, grouper, shrimp, etc.

          Just go seafood crazy and it's pretty hard to go wrong. You won't have to go to expensive places to get high quality.

          Enjoy, ya'll!

          2 Replies
          1. re: EarlyBird

            Thank you for this great write up! I'll look into those spots. I'm going on the trip with my (dieting) mom who has decreed that we aren't going to any heavy southern food places that specialize in things like fried chicken, potatoes, and pie. Sigh. But maybe I can convince her to try one place like that!

            1. re: sarahinthecity

              Funny you mention that. I had started a bit of a reduction plan a couple of weeks before I left for the trip, and I have to say, if I wanted to be really strict I could have lived on salad with oysters and veggies with oysters - did I mention oysters? - and dropped some weight. The bourbon was not "on the plan," but it was good.

              Just have her eliminate the starchy and sugary stuff and enjoy the fish, veggies and meats. She'll reduce and still enjoy herself, and you can eat what you want, too.

              Have fun!

          2. I actually just got back from a trip to Savannah. I think you have a pretty good list put together! Leopolds ice cream is pretty amazing - we stopped their twice! A.Lure was very good but pricey. If you're looking for more casual I would highly recommend B.Matthews. Check out the menu I think it's modern and interesting like you're looking for We actually had lunch there and then breakfast on another day. Had awesome food both times.

            Also if you like trying fun cocktails I recommend the 5-Spice Mule. It's like a Moscow Mule but with their house made 5-Spice blend which rounds out/complements the vodka and lime without adding uncomfortable heat.

            I'm sure you'll have a great trip!