Word of the Faculty Lounge-esque bar-meets-haute hot dog spot had been bubbling for a while, thanks to the sudden notoriety of Shep Rose, a castmember of the recently aired Bravo show Southern Charm
and an investor in the spot. His restaurant opening never made it onto the show, much to the relief of owner/operator Taylor Grant, who doesn't want the spot to become the Shep show (and perhaps get overrun with hot chicks in short skirts).
We stopped by Palace Hotel on two recent occasions to try out the menu and chat with Rose and Taylor about the venture.
“Taylor and I met in high school,” Rose told us. The Hilton Head native attended boarding school at Alexandria, Va.’s famed Episcopal High, and while Grant wasn’t a student, they had plenty of mutual friends. The two reconnected this past year and Rose says becoming an investor was an easy decision. “I’m not just investing in the idea, I’m investing in the man.”
Palace Hotel, with its walls painted in bold stripes of white and blue, is the kind of place one might find themselves late on a Thursday afternoon playing vintage video games or deep into the midnight hour with visions of hot dogs on the mind.
But these aren’t Oscar Mayer weiners, no. Consulting chef Eva Keilty, she of Warehouse’s adult grilled cheeses (remember those?), has used her skills to take tube meat up a notch. The menu includes pork, turkey, tofu, and Wagyu beef dogs. Small side plates include boiled peanuts, red potato salad, and a kale rooskie salad with sprouts, tahini, beets, candied pistachios, and radish.
We tried the Get-Low Country Dog (pictured above), which can only be described as a classic chili dog on steroids made with house pork-and-beef chili, pimento cheese sauce, potato sticks, and French onion 'scream ($7) served on a perfectly squishy bun from Brown's Court.
We also noshed on the Angry Tom ($7), a hot dog with char siu glaze, seasonal kimchi, Szechuan carrot, Thai curry mayo, herbs, and sesame nori. Sounds crazy, but it works.
The beer menu ranges from High Life Ponies ($1.50) to Holy City Buffalo Porter on draft ($6) with some decent choices in between. (Alas, there are no King Cobras — like the sign says above — unless maybe you demand one).
New chef Blake Joyal is coming over from his job as butcher at FIG to expand the menu, which has been limited during the soft open period, says Grant. They expect to start serving lunch soon. In the meantime, they open every afternoon at 4 p.m. We recommend stopping by soon. The bartenders are friendly and the crowd is extremely casual.
Palace Hotel has been open for a few weeks now at 35 Hanover St., serving up giant haute dogs, cold brews, and a menu designed by consultant chef Eva Keilty (you might know her from Ted's Butcher Block and Warehouse). The tucked-away spot, formerly the East Side Snack Shack, has been steadily attracting an eclectic crowd of neighbors and friends.