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charleston eats

Charleston Restaurant News

Poogan’s Porch Introduces Weekday Brunch during April

April 6, 2017

Brunch lovers rejoice! Charleston institution Poogan’s Porch will be offering their brunch menu for a full two weeks in April. It will be available Monday through Sunday, April 8-23.

Regular brunch hours will still apply for the weekends (Saturday and Sunday, 9AM to 2:30PM) while Monday through Friday, the brunch menu will be available from 10:30AM to 2:30PM during that two week period.

Charleston, SC Restaurant Reviews

Zero Restaurant + Bar

December 15, 2016

I want to start off this post by saying that Zero Restaurant + Bar is probably my favorite restaurant in Charleston. I’ve been 3 times now and each visit was even better than the last (and I didn’t even think that was possible). I’m not sure what Chef Vinson Petrillo is doing back in that kitchen, but it is magical. Recently, they changed up the way they present the menu, with the focus being on more of a pre-fixe, Chef’s tasting menu, which is honestly what I would have ordered anyway. It’s a bit pricy at $125 a person, but for 6 courses and beverage pairings, I think you’re getting a pretty good deal.

Then again, I’m always willing to spend more on something delicious.

Even if you don’t want to stay for dinner or order off the a la carte menu (but you really should), you should definitely stop by the bar and try one of their fantastic cocktails. My favorites are The Red Scare (Agavales Tequila, PAMA, Jack Rudy Grenadine, Habanero Simple Cilantro, Lemon, Lime, $13), which has a great little kick to it, and the Alter Ego (Hendrink’s Gin, Lavender, Lime, Habanero Citrus Foam (Egg White), Burlesque Bitters, $13), which also has a kick to it, but is also so fresh and bright. But you can’t go wrong with pretty much anything on the menu.

My Alter Ego likes to pretend she’s constantly being filmed like in The Truman Show.

When I visited recently, I was joined by my friend (and one of my favorite local foodie bloggers) Marianne of Basil and Bubbly. It’s nice going to eat with a fellow food blogger, as you don’t get the same annoyed stares and sighs as people wait for you to take 15 pictures of 1 dish.

Marianne knows what’s up.

Our first course was the Snacks plate, which consisted of Chef Petrillo’s world famous (or at least they should be) deviled eggs with caviar, a foie gras macaron, a lobster roll bite, and a potted “plant.” Each item was about 2 bites (unless you have a big mouth like me). My favorite was definitely the deviled eggs (which I’ve had before and are always a crowd-pleaser), but the potted plant (puffed red quinoa, housemade butter & heirloom radish) was one of the coolest and most unique things I’ve ever eaten. This course was served with a glass of champagne, which gave the whole thing a very whimsical, Alice in Wonderland-type vibe.

And the presentation can’t be beat!

Course #2 was the Beet Tartare (with encapsulated carrot “yolk,” sorrel, yogurt, warm multigrain), which also caught us by surprise. First of all, who’d have ever thought you could make an egg yolk out of a carrot?! Granted it didn’t taste much like an egg yolk, but it sure looked like one. I’m not usually a fan of beets, but Chef Petrillo smoked them on the Zero grill before serving them to us, which gave the whole dish a touch of smokiness, which completely changed the flavor of the beets that I had been expecting. In fact, if you closed your eyes, you might not have even noticed that this dish was meatless. It was that good.

My brain auto-corrected it to “beef” on the menu anyway, so I was really thrown off when it came out and was purple.

Course #3–probably my favorite of the entire meal–consisted of liquid parmesan tortellini (chanterelle mushroom ragout, late peas, spruce tips). They poured a nice broth over the tortellini at the table, which made the dish an entire experience in and of itself. I love any combination of cheese and noodle, but these soft parmesan pillows were out of this world.

Lord, please let them serve liquid parmesan tortellini in heaven.

Course #4, in contrast, was probably my least favorite dish: roasted snapper with potatoes cooked in seaweed and mussels cooked in whey. It was a perfectly pleasant dish, but nothing about it knocked my socks off (although that could’ve just been because I hadn’t had a chance to put them back on after the tortellini…who’s to say).

Socks are such fickle creatures.

The final of our entree courses was something I’m surprised to say that I’ve never had the pleasure of eating before: Beef Wellington (I know, I know…and I call myself a foodie) with foie gras, caramelized onion, wild mushrooms, and aerated potato. Every bite I took of this dish made me stop and say “wow;” the beef practically melted in your mouth, and the potatoes were so light and airy, they didn’t even seem real. When my plate was finally empty, I went into a bit of a depression that still lingers on to this day.

Beef Wellington, where have you been all my life??

For our dessert course, we were treated to tres leches in Chef Petrillo’s classic style. Young coconut, spongy cake, and honeycomb provided 3 completely different tastes and textures, with an understated sweetness that was very satisfying to the palate. I would 110% order this again.

How many milks do I need to recreate this dish at home.

From the impeccable service to the ambiance of the gorgeous outdoor patio to the expectation-shattering culinary prowess of Chef Vinson Petrillo, Zero Restaurant + Bar will forever hold a special place in my heart. If you ever get a chance to dine here, you should jump on that opportunity posthaste!

Posthaste I say!

Zero Restaurant + Bar
0 George Street
Charleston, SC 29401

Zero Restaurant + Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato < ignore this rating because these people are insane & not to be trusted.


Charleston Restaurant News

Restaurant Week at CO All September Long

September 2, 2015

One of the things I miss most about working on King Street is being able to go to CO whenever I got a whim. Their vietnamese chicken salad and dac biet pho were standards of my lunchtime repertoire, and their happy hour deals were irresistible. Now that I’m not visiting CO once a week, it’s really put a dent in earning my free trip to Vietnam via their CO Rewards program.

And also my PHOto obsession #puns

And also my PHOto obsession #puns

Lucky for you, CO is treatings its Rewards Members to restaurant week all month long! Rewards Members can enjoy a 3-course selection for $20, 4-course selection for $25, and add on a 3-course cocktail pairing for $17 thru September 30th.  Not a Rewards Member (why not?! It’s free. Get it together, people)? CO will also join other area restaurants in the official South Carolina Restaurant Week from September 9 – 20, offering its prix fixe menu to all guests.



Charleston, SC Restaurant Reviews

Swig & Swine

January 16, 2015

One of my favorite new restaurants to open in West Ashley recently was definitely Swig & Swine. I love me some good pork and boy, does Swig & Swine have some good pork!

I mean, basically.

Also, your body weight in pulled pork seems to do the trick.

The first time I went with friends, we couldn’t decide what we wanted, so we ordered the Family Platter (Smoked Chicken Wings, Ribs, Smoked Turkey, Pulled Pork, Beef Brisket, Smoked Pork Belly, Homemade Sausage, w/ 3 sides, $38), since it had basically everything on the menu.

Seriously. Everything but the kitchen sink.

Seriously. Everything but the kitchen sink.

All of their meat is amazing. The ribs and the chicken wings are something else entirely, and the brisket is so flavorful. I’m not as crazy about the pork belly, but that’s more of a texture thing for me.

Talk about a successful before and after pic.

Talk about a successful before and after pic.

The pulled pork is smoky and yummy all on its own, but that’s unnecessary because Swig and Swine has 4 different sauces you can use, a sweet red, Carolina mustard, vinegar, Alabama white, and they’re all delicious. My favorite is the mustard and it might be one of the best mustard sauces I’ve ever had. Their sweet red is also great, and you’ll like the Alabama white if you like that white sauce at Japanese restaurants (which I do).

If you love BBQ sauce, this is the place to be. Photo via Swig & Swine's Website

If you love BBQ sauce, this is the place to be. Photo via Swig & Swine’s Website

For the sides, we chose Mac & Cheese (obviously), Beans w/ Brisket, and Pickled Vegetables. The mac and cheese is awesome, I highly recommend it if you like a classic shells-and-cheese-style macaroni.

Seriously good macaroni.

Seriously good macaroni.

The baked beans are tangy and meaty (from the brisket) and smoky, and just great all around.

Beans, beans, the magical fruit...

Beans, beans, the magical fruit…


The pickled vegetables are the perfect texture, not too soft, not too crisp and I love the taste of the vinegar they’re soaked in.

And what an array of veggies!

And what an array of veggies!

On a follow-up visit, we got the same family platter, which we split between 4 of us, so we managed to have some room leftover for dessert (Banana Pudding or Mini Pies, $5). I went with the chocolate pecan pie, which was served as a mini-pie-for-one with homemade whipped cream on top, which was nice and fluffy and just a touch sweet. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

It's so cute and miniature!

It’s so cute and miniature!

Lily got the banana pudding, which I’m normally not a fan of, but this was pretty darn good. It tasted like real bananas and not banana flavoring, and was nice and creamy and topped with something that had the consistency of meringue.

It tastes much better than it looks, I promise.

It tastes much better than it looks, I promise.

Ben May got a blueberry cream pie (I think that’s what it was), and it was thick and creamy with fresh blueberries on the bottom. We were all very quiet as we ate our desserts, which is very unlike us, so that’s how you know it was good.

This definitely had a different name than "blueberry cream pie" but I can't for the life of me think of what it was.

This definitely had a different name than “blueberry cream pie” but I can’t for the life of me think of what it was.

If you get a chance to go to Swig & Swine, you definitely should. Get the family platter and let me know what your favorite meat or side is!

This is exactly how a classy roadside BBQ joint should look.

This is exactly how a roadside BBQ joint should look. Photo via Swig & Swine’s Website

Swig & Swine
1217 Savannah Hwy
Charleston, SC 29407

Swig & Swine Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Charleston, SC Restaurant Reviews


March 28, 2014

So I’m a recent Vietnamese food convert. I’m kind of surprised it took me this long, but nobody’s perfect. I’ve been eating banh mi for a couple of years now, and am obsessed, but I never really ventured any further into Vietnamese cuisine until one fateful day back in December when I stumbled on a tweet from Foodmancing The Girl talking about how much he loves Pho.

You had me at "free dumplings."

You had me at “free dumplings.”

That first lunch was awesome. I took Foodmancing’s advice and got the pork belly buns (pork belly, pickled cucumber and carrots, hoisin, cilantro, $6), and those suckers were on point.  The buttery bread, the perfectly cooked pork, the crisp pickled veggies…I’m drooling a little just thinking about them. If it wasn’t Friday during Lent, I’d probably head there for lunch right now.

Seriously. They're so good.

Seriously. They’re so good.

The main purpose of my visit, however, was to try Pho for the first time. I was a little intimidated because I didn’t really know what I was getting myself into. I opted for the beef pho (rare beef, rice vermicelli, bean sprouts, cilantro, thai basil, scallions, beef broth, $12) which was so good it’s sinful. Not really knowing what the protocol was, I just dumped in all of the accoutrements, including lots of hot sauce, which added a little more heat to the broth than I was prepared for, but it was still delicious. The beef was sliced really thin and cooked perfectly and the flavors of the soup came together perfectly. I was instantly a fan.

My strategy for most things is "throw everything in there and hope it tastes good."

My strategy for most things is “throw everything in there and hope it tastes good.”

When Naomi came to visit, we were excited that CO had a vegan menu for her to choose from. We started out with a couple of fancy cocktails, which were delicious. Naomi really enjoyed her asian pear cider (spiced rum, schnapps, asian pear, cinnamon, $9) and I thought the spiced mandarin caipirinha (cachaca, grand marnier, muddled mandarin & lime, star anise simple syrup, cinnamon, nutmeg, $9.5) was pretty unique and awesome as well.

Look at that smile!

Look at that smile!

and then ordered some Tofu buns (crispy tofu, pickled cucumber and carrots, cilantro, $6) which were really good (although not as good as the pork belly. But as a carnivore, I might be biased). My only complaint is that without the hoisin sauce, they were a little dry.

Tofu and I have an uneasy truce.

Tofu and I have an uneasy truce.

I was trying to branch out and try something other than my usual pho, so I deferred to the waitress who recommended the hanoi noodles (spicy yellow curry, onion, carrots, zucchini, rice noodles, shrimp, shanghai sausage, $14). I really liked it, although the flavors started getting a little overwhelming towards the end. The shanghai sausage wasn’t my favorite, but the shrimp was perfectly cooked and really delicious. Also it’s asian food, so there’s a lot of grease.

Still delicious, though!

Still delicious, though!

Naomi was really sad that the green curry was not vegan for some reason (and they never responded to my tweet asking them why), so she ended up ordering the vegan yakisoba (rice noodles, tofu,  cabbage, carrots, onion, zucchini, garlic, sweet mirin soy sauce, $14) instead. She absolutely loved it and was basically licking the bowl by the end. I really liked how well they cooked the tofu, which is high praise coming from me.

Gotta love a restaurant that gives you plenty of cilantro with every dish.

Gotta love a restaurant that gives you plenty of cilantro with every dish.

Next time I go, I really want to try the curry laksa (shrimp, shredded chicken, bun rice noodles, shredded cucumber, thai basil, baby bok choy, spicy coconut broth) and the mapo doufo (ground pork, tofu, edamame, carrots, black bean garlic sauce), which both sound delicious. If you haven’t been, I highly recommend you check it out, especially their new $4 happy hour special weekdays from 4-7.

Plus the space is just so sexy!

Plus the space is just so sexy!

340 King St
Charleston, SC 29401
(843) 720-3631
Co Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Random Fodder

Best of Charleston 2014!

March 26, 2014

Today’s the day that the 2014 Best of Charleston winners were announced in the Charleston City Paper. Last year I did a mini version of my picks for the best of Charleston, so this year I thought I’d do a follow up. Obviously the only section I care about is the Best Charleston Food section (especially since I wasn’t voted “Best Local Blog” … again … way to drop the ball, guys).

Let's do this!

Seriously. I expect more out of you next year.

Best Sandwich
Persimmon Cafe

Best Vegetarian Restaurant
Dell’z Deli

Best Neoplitan-Style Pizza
Desano Pizza Bakery

Best Lunch When Someone Else is Paying

Best Bowl Of Soup
Five Loaves Cafe

Best Sunday Brunch
Lost Dog Cafe

Best Fried Chicken
Martha Lou’s Kitchen

Best Italian Restaurant
Wild Olive

Best Food Festival
Smoke on the Harbor

Best Boiled Shrimp
Bowen’s Island

Best Chinese
Lee Lee’s Hot Kitchen

Best Sushi Roll
The King’s Speech at Zen Asian Fusion

Best Local Brewery
Frothy Beard

Best Falafel
Ali Baba Mediterranean Cuisine

Best Barbecue Buffet
JB’s Smokeshack

Best Margarita
Taco Boy

Best Mac and Cheese
Crave Kitchen & Cocktails

Best Butterscotch Cookies
Sugar Bakeshop

Best Late Night Eats
Butcher & Bee

Best Mexican Food
La Nortena

Best Gourmet Grocery Store
Southern Season

Best Tater Tots
The Alley

Best Pho

Best Cocktails

Best Place I Tried During Restaurant Week
Trattoria Lucca

Best Sandwich on Johns Island
Southern General

Charleston, SC Restaurant Reviews

Leaf Café [CLOSED]

November 8, 2013

So this is going to be a shorter review. I’m just getting over bronchitis, so I’ve been pretty housebound and not inspired to write much. But I feel indebted to you guys since I didn’t do a quote this week or a review last week. So, enjoy! I went to Leaf last week with Laura because I hadn’t seen her in a million bajillion years and we’ve both undergone some changes recently, so it was a good time to dish and commiserate.



We decided on Leaf because it was close, and cheap, and I really wanted a sandwich. The space at Leaf is really cool, and I like it more than when it was Vickery’s (plus it’s lacking that weird smell that the bar area always seemed to have). It was a nice day, so we decided to sit on the patio.

Look how pretty! Thanks for the picture, Susan Lucas!

Look how pretty! Thanks for the picture, Susan Lucas!

Laura got the Southern Fried Chicken sandwich (potato fried chicken, tomato, greens, creole aioli on whole wheat roll, $9) with a side of parmesan truffle fries and a sweet tea. The I tried a piece of her chicken, and it was really yummy; nice and crispy on the outside, and juicy on the inside. The sandwich was a monster, and she had a hard time eating it, but she liked it a lot.

I mean, look at how tall it is. Like a chicken wearing a hat.

I mean, look at how tall it is. Like a chicken wearing a hat.

I got the Braised Short Rib Grilled Cheese ( burgundy braised beef, manchego and gruyere cheeses served on tuscan sourdough, with a delicious jus of mushroom tea and beef demi glacé for dipping, $11). I also got it with a side of parmesan truffle fries. I loved this sandwich. It was everything I wanted it to be. The jus was the perfect accompaniment to the sandwich and I enjoyed every bite. The parmesan truffle fries were good as well, although not out of the norm for Charleston.

I promise there's a sandwich buried under all those fries.

I promise there’s a sandwich buried under all those fries.

All in all, I enjoyed my lunch at Leaf. The service left a little something to be desired, but the food made up for that. I’d definitely eat here again!

From the Leaf website

From the Leaf website

Leaf Cafe
15 Beaufain St
Charleston, SC 29401
(843) 793-2230
Leaf on Urbanspoon

Charleston, SC Restaurant Reviews

Oak Steakhouse

October 4, 2013

My final restaurant week visit was with my roommate, Regina, to Oak Steakhouse. I’ve been wanting to try Oak for a while now, curious to see if it could beat out my beloved Halls Chophouse (spoiler alert: it doesn’t).  I know that most people say that you shouldn’t judge a restaurant based on Restaurant Week, but I think that’s just BS. If they can’t produce quality food during RW, then they just shouldn’t participate.

Ok, I'll get off my soapbox now.

Ok, I’ll get off my soapbox now.

We started off with the spicy strawberry margarita, which definitely lived up to its name. So. Spicy. It was good, but we had to have them tone it down a little bit because we’re wimps. My mother would’ve loved it though.

More like StrawBURNy margarita.

More like StrawBURNy margarita.

After we placed our orders, we were brought some bread and butter. It was good bread, I have to say. Nice and warm, and salty, very similar to the benne seed rolls at Husk. And the butter tasted like there’s that.

Bread and butter are my bread and butter.

Bread and butter are my bread and butter.

For my starter, I got the wedge of Kurios Farms Bibb Lettuce Salad (local grape tomatoes, bacon lardons, creamy danish bleu dressing, regularly $10). Bibb wedge salads are not actually anything like your typical wedge salad (it’s just the nature of the beast), so I’ve learned not to be disappointed when I order a Bibb “wedge” salad and it comes out as basically just a bunch of lettuce leaves stacked on top of each other. But it tastes delicious!

Kind of like Lincoln Logs, but with lettuce and bacon.

Kind of like Lincoln Logs, but with lettuce and bacon and significantly less fiber.

Regina got the Vidalia onion bisque (lump crab, bacon crumble), which apparently was a special restaurant week thing. It was weird. Neither of us particularly cared for it. I get that vidalia onions are sweet, but this was ridiculous. It was overly sweet for a savory dish and I didn’t think that the flavors melded well together. Glad it’s not on the regular menu, because I would not order that again.

It seems like a lot of soup until you realize that the bowl is only like half an inch in depth.

It seems like a lot of soup until you realize that the bowl is only like half an inch in depth.

For entrees, I got the Certified Angus Beef Filet Mignon with whipped potatoes, spinach, petite carrots, and Oak’s housemade steak sauce. Being a renowned steakhouse, I was really looking forward to it. I even ordered it medium because everyone gets mad when I order it medium well (because apparently there’s some rule leftover from caveman days where your meat still has to be bleeding when you eat it, or you’re an uncultured swine). When it came out, I was upset to see that they’d precut my filet. Part of the satisfaction of ordering a steak is cutting it at the table and watching the juices ooze out onto your plate. Because they’d precut it, when I went to eat it, my steak was already cold, like it had been sitting out for a while, and not under a heat lamp. This was only emphasized by the fact that Regina’s food came out steaming for a good 5 minutes. I was also bothered by the “smear” of potatoes I got on my plate. I’m all about good plating, but this was ridiculous.

I think they really took that "Lincoln log" comment to heart with those carrots.

I think they really took that “Lincoln log” comment to heart with those carrots.

Regina got the pork shank served with sweet potato puree, braised greens, sweet apple and peach chutney. She replaced the sweet potato puree with roasted corn maque choux, by telling them she had an allergy, because they didn’t allow substitutions, which again, just bothers me. (I hate chefs that get so hoity toity about their food that they don’t let you substitute stuff. Yes, I get that some people like to make like 15 substitutions, and those people suck, but if you’re like me and you abhor mushrooms, AND you’re paying upwards of $40 dollars a plate, you shouldn’t be forced to eat them. I think this might have been another RW thing, where they already had everything premade and didn’t want to have to make real food for people who were only paying the RW price. Ok, I’ll get off my soapbox for real now, I promise.) The pork shank was awesome and fell right off the bone. The maque choux was super tasty and I’d definitely order this dish again. Basically, I was really jealous of Regina’s meal.

Plus, she got like 100% more food than I did.

Plus, she got like 100% more food than I did.

I also couldn’t resist ordering a side of the smokey bacon macaroni and cheese, $8.50. I mean, smoked bacon macaroni and cheese sounds delicious. I thought it was pretty good, but was a little disappointed in the cheese sauce. It was a little too creamy and not quite cheesy enough, but that didn’t stop me from devouring it. I’d probably still order that again. I like it better than Halls Chophouse’s mac & cheese and that’s about the only leg up that Oak got over Halls during this meal.

I'm really bad at Mac & Cheese photography. What's up with that.

I’m really bad at Mac & Cheese photography. What’s up with that.

The dessert that came with the RW menu was “S’mores” with dark chocolate mousse, graham crackers, taosted marshmallow, and salted caramel. It was weird, but I liked it. The graham cracker wasn’t like normal graham cracker, I’d say it was more like a nilla wafer (but like a rock hard version). I thought the combination was really interesting. Regina wasn’t a huge fan of the dessert, and although I can’t say it’s my new favorite thing, I thought it was pretty good.

Now this is pretty plating.

Now this is pretty plating.

Oak definitely didn’t live up to my expectations, but it had enough potential that I might be willing to give them another chance (on someone else’s dime, of course, that place is expensive).

Does anyone else think that tree looks more like a mushroom than an oak?

Does anyone else think that tree looks more like a mushroom than an oak? (photo: from Oak Steakhouse)

Oak Steakhouse
17 Broad St
Charleston, SC 29401
(843) 722-4220
Oak Steakhouse Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Charleston, SC Restaurant Reviews

Persimmon Cafe

August 30, 2013

[UPDATE 10/1/2015: I originally reviewed Persimmon Cafe (back before it was cool) back in August 2013. Since then, I’ve been to Persimmon approximately 157,000 times, so I didn’t think it was fair to leave my review as it stands. So much has changed with them (and me!) since then, that I wanted to give a more accurate representation of what it’s like to experience Persimmon.]

Persimmon Cafe, for those of you lame-os not in the know, is my favorite restaurant in Charleston. The space is kind of off-beat–I mean, who would think to put a cafe inside of a laundromat? But, it works. It really does.

It would never really work the other way around, though.

Although, it would never really work the other way around.

The menu is simple and contains just the right number of choices so as not to leave you overwhelmed. I’ve had pretty much everything on the menu (multiple times), so I’ll go through and review each of the menu items I’ve had the pleasure of experiencing, starting with my favorites.

Orzo Pasta Salad

The Orzo Pasta Salad (orzo pasta, honey, balsamic vinegar, craisins, red onion, goat cheese, $1.50) is definitely my favorite thing at Persimmon. No matter what I come in for, or how hungry I am, I always order the pasta salad. It’s got a great amount of tang from the vinegar that’s balanced out by the creaminess of the goat cheese. It’s heaven.

Goat Cheese is my kryptonite.

Goat Cheese is my kryptonite.

Curry Chicken Salad Sandwich

My standard order for a long time at Persimmon was the curry chicken sandwich (red onions, curry chicken salad, and golden raisins, $7.50). In my first review, I said “I’m a sucker for curry chicken, so that’s probably why I liked this one the best. I’d probably get that again if I went back,” and I did. A lot. It’s got a very strong curry taste, so if you’re sensitive to that, I’d recommend one of their other sammies instead.

Hello, old friend.

More for me!

Rosemary Lemon Tea

They have a really interesting selection of homemade drinks, like vanilla lemonade, basil limeade, and rosemary lemon tea. I always (literally, always) get the rosemary lemon tea. It’s my favorite drink of all time. Even more than diet coke, and that’s really saying something. They use a lemon-rosemary simple syrup that they add to their freshly brewed tea, and it is unique and totally delicious.

Not as much as I love you!

Not as much as I love you! #soulmates


The Greek

My new favorite sandwich is The Greek (thick-cut turkey, Greek-style salad, sheep’s milk feta, mayo, warm naan bread, $8). I don’t think I’ve ever had a sandwich like the Greek before. It’s so good. The sheep’s milk feta has a unique taste, much different from regular feta. It’s creamier and goes really well with whatever dressing they put on the Greek salad (I’m assuming Greek dressing??). The whole sandwich is a work of art.

Seriously. Someone frame this for me.

Seriously. Someone frame this for me.

Nutella Custard

Tell me, is there anything better than a restaurant that lights marshmallows on fire right in front of your face? No. No, there is not. Especially when those flambeed marshmallows sit atop a holy grail of nutella custard. Thick, creamy custard, big chunks of Nutella, hot toasted marshmallows… This is basically why the phrase “food porn” was invented.

Have you ever been turned on by ice cream before?

Have you ever been turned on by ice cream before?

The Italian

When Persimmon introduced the Italian sandwich (hard salame, sorpressata, prosciutto, provolone, dressed spinach, mayo, torta roll, $8), I was so excited that I cancelled my lunch plans and ordered that instead. I have a problem, I know. It has all the trappings of a classic italian sandwich: fatty italian meats, provolone cheese, and lots of mayo. They throw some spinach in there so your body gets some nutrition out of it. It’s very greasy and I feel like I need to wash my hands (and face) afterward, but man is it delicious.

Hey good lookin'

Hey good lookin’

Adult Grilled Cheese

The Adult Grilled Cheese (smoked Gouda, green apple, prosciutto & cheddar, $6.75) is a classic. When you pulled the sandwich apart it was nice and melty and cheesy. I really liked the green apple, which adds a level of freshness to the sandwich (and pairs really well with the gouda).

Melted cheese is my kryptonite.

Melted cheese is also my kryptonite.

Butternut Squash

The butternut squash sandwich (grilled butternut squash, curry cashew butter, honey, goat cheese, $6.75) is also a favorite among my friends. Rob once made it vegan-style for my cousin, and she’s still talking about it, 2 years later. Lauren requests it every time she visits Charleston. Grilling the butternut squash brings out its full flavor, and the curry cashew butter complements the nuttiness of the squash perfectly. Then you have the goat cheese, which makes everything taste better, and a little bit of honey for some sweetness. It’s a winner for vegans and carnivores alike.

What's up butternut, whooooa whoa whoa.

What’s up butternut, whooooa whoa whoa.

Lobster Roll

Persimmon also makes one of the best lobster rolls (light mayo, parmesan, celery, $16.50) in Charleston. They don’t have it on the menu very often, but when they do, you should definitely order it. It’s big and it’s decadent, but it’s also totally worth it.

"Ooooh, the claw"

“Ooooh, the claw”

The Cubano

This is Sean’s favorite sandwich because it’s so manly and full of meat. The cubano (thick-cut ham, pulled pork, plantain dijon, havarti, bread & butter pickles, torta roll, $8) is really unique twist on a classic cubano sandwich. I love the way the plantain dijon balances out the tanginess from the pulled pork, and the havarti brings the whole sandwich together.

Persimmon is very multicultural.

Persimmon is very multicultural.

Tuna Tacos

I love tuna and I love tacos and Persimmon combined that love into 1 menu item, the Blowtorch Tuna Tacos (peanut butter & ginger slaw, spicy mayo, blowtorched tuna, $3.50/taco). They’re super simple and packed with flavor, especially if you like tuna.

Taco Taco Taco!

Taco Taco Taco!

Soups! (All of them)

Persimmon has 2 soup options daily to choose from and they consist of the following options (on rotation): Tomato Parm; Sweet Potato, curry and goat cheese; spicy black bean and corn; cream of asparagus; and potato cheddar. They’re all $4 each and come with a toasted piece of bread. They’re also all delicious. You can’t go wrong with any of them, although my faves are the sweet potato, curry, and goat cheese and the potato cheddar.

Yes, soup for me!

Yes, soup for me!

In my first review, I ended it by saying “I can’t wait to go back. I highly recommend you check this place out if you haven’t already,” and that holds true today. Even though I’ve eaten there more times than I can count, I always look forward to my next visit!

It almost makes me want to start going to the laundromat... almost.

It almost makes me want to start going to the laundromat… almost.

Persimmon Cafe
226 Calhoun Street
Charleston, SC

Persimmon Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Charleston, SC Restaurant Reviews

Cru Café

August 16, 2013

Cru is in a little historic house off of Market Street downtown Charleston. The house is really cute, but when you come in the front door, they only have one room for seating, so they have as many tables and chairs shoved in there as possible. If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to eat when crammed into a tiny space with a bunch of strangers, sitting so close that you can’t help but overhear everything that everyone is saying in the whole restaurant, then Cru is definitely the place for you.

Basically this.

Basically this. Minus the dog.

But enough about the atmosphere, let’s move on to the food. We got some bread before our appetizers, which was very good. I would’ve liked it a if they’d toasted it a bit, but it was still good.

Yup. Looks like bread.

Yup. Looks like bread.

We started with the fried green tomatoes with smoked pork belly and feta cheese ($10.50). Phenomenal. Seriously, probably the best FGT I’ve ever had. And the smoked pork belly was out of this world. Seriously, I’d go back just for these puppies.

That smoked pork belly might actually be ambrosia.

That smoked pork belly might actually be ambrosia.

We also got the pecan fried brie with fig compote and local honey ($10.25). I managed to get one bite of it before he demolished it all. That one bite was quite tasty, and judging from the way he “forgot” to share, he really enjoyed it as well.

Ben ate it so fast I didn't get a picture. Picture courtesy of Loo on Urbanspoon.

He ate it so fast I didn’t get a picture. Picture courtesy of Loo on Urbanspoon.

For my entree, I got the center cut Tuna steak, medium rare ($28). I thought it was good (not great), but that was probably my own fault. Everyone says you should get it rare, but I’m one of those weird people who like it more on the “well-done” side. I got it medium rare because the waiter insisted that any higher is blasphemy. I think I would’ve loved it had I gotten it cooked the way I wanted it to. The lady at the table next to us loved hers though, so I guess it’s just a matter of personal preference.

It looks so good, though.

It looks so good, though.

The person I was with got the BBQ Berkshire Pork Osso Bucco with Mepkin Oyster Mushrooms and Haricot Vert, Mash Potato, Smoked Tomato Demi ($23.95). It was really delicious. The pork literally fell off the bone and the mashed potato tasted homemade. He loved it and he had enough to take home extras.

Pork shoulder never looked so good.

Pork shoulder never looked so good.

We also ordered some sides to split. The first was Cru’s famous four cheese macaroni ($8.50). Made with orecchiette, cheddar, pepper jack, fontina, and mozzarella. It was killer. Really, really good.

Cheesy goodness.

Cheesy goodness.

The only thing we were disappointed with during the whole meal was the truffle parmesan fries ($6). Shoestring fries with truffle and parmesan were just not on par with the rest of the meal. Something about the shoestring fries felt cheap, definitely not worth $6.

They neglect to tell you that they bring you a mountain-sized portion of fries.

They neglect to tell you that they bring you a mountain-sized portion of fries.

If you haven’t been to Cru Cafe yet, I highly recommend you go. I for one, can’t wait to go back.

Photo courtesy of dilwyne designs

Photo courtesy of Dilwyne Designs

Cru Cafe
18 Pinckney St
Charleston, SC 29401
(843) 534-2434

Cru Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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