Friday, April 14, 2017

North Charleston kombucha company Dalai Sofia hits the G-Spot

Hit it and sip it

Posted by Connelly Hardaway on Fri, Apr 14, 2017 at 12:27 PM

  • Connelly Hardaway
Every time we turn around there's a new kombucha company in town, and that's just fine by us. While some people have yet to come around to the lip-puckering taste of fermented tea, we love the stuff. It ain't called the immortal health elixir for nothing.

We got to try a new brand from Dalai Sofia, a North Charleston-based company, the other day called Fat Beets. Made with local beets, tumeric, ginger, thyme, and lemon this kombucha is made to detoxify, ridding the body of toxins and excess hormones. That all may be true, but we just thought the red juice tasted good.

Founded by Emily Phillips, Jeff Lowe, and Zach Smith, Dalai Sofia is pretty new to town, popping up at their first farmers market, Mt. Pleasant Farmers Market, last week. We got a taste of the elixir from Circe's Grotto, and it looks like Veggie Bin carries the 'bucha now, too. Follow Dalai Sofia on Instagram to stay up-to-date with their whereabouts.

In addition to Fat Beets you can try Bee Well Tonic, made with local green tea and raw local honey, which is technically a ferment called Jun. And last but certainly not least is Dalai Sofia's G-Spot, an infusion of local grapefruit and galangal, a rhizome similar to ginger. The G-Spot is great for circulation and is supposed to leave you feeling "a little bit tingly." Yum.

Thanks @veggie_bin for stocking the Beets and GSpot booch!

A post shared by Dalai Sofia Kombucha (@dalaisofia) on

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Thursday, April 13, 2017

First they stole Brock, now Nashville chefs are after Mike Lata

Mike drop

Posted by Kinsey Gidick on Thu, Apr 13, 2017 at 11:28 AM

If Nashville chefs have their way, Mike Lata will be opening a restaurant there soon - JONATHAN BONCEK
  • Jonathan Boncek
  • If Nashville chefs have their way, Mike Lata will be opening a restaurant there soon
We co-opted their hot chicken, is it any wonder Nashvillians are after our top chef? That's the word in the Nashville Scene today wherein some of that city's leading gourmands reveal that they'd love it if Mike Lata opened a restaurant there.

In its "20 Questions: What the City's Food Pros Really Think" feature, the alt weekly's editorial team polled Nashville chefs, GMs, and restaurant owners on 20 questions regarding the culinary scene. Lo and behold, when asked "What out-of-town chef would you most like to see open a restaurant in Nashville?" guess whose name was on the list? That's right, Mike Lata. Our — yes, OUR — James Beard Awarding-winning chef.

  • Nashville Scene
Back off, Music City!

Is Sean Brock not enough for you people? First you had to go and win over our heirloom-seed loving, trucker hat-wearing, cherry-cheeked genius Brock, wooing him with your honky-tonks and Tennessee whiskey. Now you want to steal our vegetable visionary, our sustainable seafood savior, our one and only Mike Lata?! God damn. Is nothing sacred?

I mean, come on, Nashville, not only did Brock open Husk there, he packed his bags and moved to your city. Then you have the audacity to go and look a gift horse in the mouth naming him one of Nasvhille's most over-rated chefs? That's cold, y'all.

Even if Brock is busy and overworked, he's actually a super nice and genuine guy who has been a big asset to both cities. Lest we forget, Brock sang the praises of both Charleston and NashVegas on Parts Unknown, and near single-handedly vindicated Bourdain after his crummy first visit to Charleston on No Reservations. All that and he did it while battling blindness.

Now we admit, we Charlestonians cling to Brock's name like children to a melting chocolate bar. The more comfortable he gets in Nashville, the further he seems to slip through our fingers. His ties to Charleston may run deep, but the fear that they might be only as strong as the mortar between the bricks of McCrady's is ever present — and if you hadn't noticed, mortar on 200-plus year old buildings in Charleston ain't holding up so well this week.

So how 'bout a truce? We'll admit that Nashville's culinary prowess is gaining on the Holy City if you promise to creep off our man Mike.

Oh, and you can keep your damn hot chicken.

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Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Meathouse Butcher Shop business is for sale

Until we meat again

Posted by Kinsey Gidick on Wed, Apr 12, 2017 at 12:15 PM

Meathouse Butchershop is being sold turnkey complete with fully enclosed smoker - CRAIGSLIST
  • Craigslist
  • Meathouse Butchershop is being sold turnkey complete with fully enclosed smoker

A year after opening on Johns Island, Meathouse Butcher Shop is up for sale. A Craigslist ad for the full service butcher shop says the entire DHEC certified and licensed operation, complete with a beer and wine license and all intellectual property, and branding, and signs is available for purchase. According to post, the "lease is $4k/mo, triple net, with 14 years left."

Butcher Jason Houser founded Meathouse and made it a farmers market staple for years. In 2014 Tattooed Moose owners Jen and Mike Kulick partnered with Houser and open Meathouse's brick-and-mortar on Johns Island next to the couple's second Moose in April last year. Houser left Meathouse last summer and now, due to a multitude of reasons, Mike says, they've decided to sell the business.

For someone already working in the meat trade, Mike says the chance to buy Meathouse could be a great opportunity. "Pursuant to your story on chefs struggling with charcuterie HACCP Plans, we already have all of ours and those are included in the intellectual property," he says.

Of course, since the space is already outfitted with a DHEC approved kitchen, it could become the future home to any number of food related businesses — a cafe, a catering kitchen, etc. But until that future business owner reaches to to make a deal with the Kulicks, Meathouse is deeply discounting all of its product before closings the doors. Everything in the store, including beer and wine, is now 25 percent off.

Those deals include discounts on chicken liver mushroom country pate, applewood smoked bacon, breakfast sausage, and brisket. The newsletter doesn't giving a closing date, but we suspect it'll be when they run out of meat so best get to 3338 Maybank Hwy. soon.

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Nick's Original BBQ forced to close King Street location

"It hurts deep"

Posted by Kinsey Gidick on Wed, Apr 12, 2017 at 9:11 AM

Nick's has been shuttered following structure concerns - KINSEY GIDICK
  • Kinsey Gidick
  • Nick's has been shuttered following structure concerns
Yesterday afternoon the 288 King St. location of Nick's Original BBQ was forced to close its doors due to significant structural problems. In a statement from owners Nick Pihakis and John Haire, the two explain that they received news that the 200-year-old building "is in a bad way and requires immediate attention and substantial repairs."

Initial problems with the building were noticed in December Haire says.

"It's an old building and you just learn, when you're in there every day for 12 years, the way things are supposed to look and the front had a different look where the walls meet each other," he says. Concerned, Haire had inspectors come check it out and the response was not good. Initially they told the owner to get all the perishables out, but on further consideration, Haire was told to remove as much equipment as possible by the end of the day today.

"That mortar just said 'I've been here for 200 and I'm tired,'" Haire says. Today, driving past, a barricade has been placed around the front of the building.

The staff have posted a farewell sign in the window - KINSEY GIDICK
  • Kinsey Gidick
  • The staff have posted a farewell sign in the window
City spokesman Jack O'Toole told Post & Courier that "after consulting extensively today with Mr. Rosen and the building's owners, City officials ordered a sidewalk and lane closure to protect public safety while a detailed reconstruction plan is formulated. We expect to have further announcements over the next 24 to 48 hours, as those plans are formalized and approved."

Haire believes repairs will take at least six months which is why he and Pihakis have decided to start looking for a new location downtown.

"It hurts deep," he says. "It's a complete buzzkill. We have loved being there on King Street and it's been this evolution of businesses coming and going and we've stood the test of time. The emotional rollercoaster has been with my staff."

In the past day Haire has met with or called all of his staff at the King Street location to sort out next steps. "We have everyone from freshmen in college all the way up to 50-year-old men working for us there ," Haire says. But just because Nick's Original BBQ has closed doesn't mean anyone is out of a job. Haire told every staff member that they will have a position at either Jim 'N Nick's Bar-B-Q in North Charleston (4964 Centre Pointe Dr.) or the new Mt. Pleasant (1486 Stuart Engals Blvd.) restaurant opening next month.

"It's so important. We have 30 employees that work with us there. Some have been with us for 10 years, almost since we opened," Haire says getting a bit choked up. "It's so important to make sure those men and women know their paychecks will not stop."

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Tuesday, April 11, 2017

MOMO Gastrotruck will bring bison meat hot dogs to streets in May

A moveable feast

Posted by Kathryn Noviello on Tue, Apr 11, 2017 at 4:09 PM

Justin Moore wants to bring white tablecloth dining to the streets - PROVIDED
  • Provided
  • Justin Moore wants to bring white tablecloth dining to the streets
After years of working behind the scenes as a chef in a number of restaurants including Carolina's, Columbia native Justin Moore decided to expand his horizons while simultaneously doing what he hopes will expand the South’s perception of fine dining. Moore is opening MOMO, a gastrotruck and catering service, on May 1.

After being intrigued by the food scene in L.A, Moore was motivated to branch out and show people the possibilities of mobile eateries. Moore says that the goal of MOMO is to change the common perception of the food truck by bringing white-tablecloth-quality food to the streets. “We want MOMO to change the food truck scene in the South,” he says.

Moore doesn’t want MOMO to be limited to one specific type of cuisine, but rather be loosely defined as elevated American cuisine. The gastrotruck’s menu will be vegetable driven, not the greasy-cheese-covered food truck menu he says customers are more accustomed to.

Moore also says that his kitchen is like a pub with no rules. The truck’s menu will include a hot dog made of bison meat, chicken rinds, and for dessert he'll serve a nitrogen milkshakes. Moore adds that Charleston’s culture and local resources played a huge role in his location decision.

“MOMO will work closely with farmers and fishermen in the community, incorporating local and fresh ingredients into the food,” says Moore.

In addition to the uniquely prepared dishes, MOMO will offer a variety of grab-and-go items such as fresh fruit, jams, chicken salad sold by the pint, and freshly baked break from Saffron. The food truck will also offers on-site catering.

The GPS in the truck allows Charlestonians to track the truck via its social media sites. While it is a mobile restaurant, Moore wants MOMO to be a desired lunch/dinner destination, not just a food truck that people happen to come across on the street.

“I’ve been interested in changing the common perception of the food truck for a while, so I thought ‘Why can’t we do it here? Why not Charleston?’”

Check out MOMO's full menu at

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