This is the best bagel in Charleston. Whoever is behind the baking definitely knows what they're doing and consistently cranks out perfect bagels every time. In addition to the bagels, they make all their own flavored cream cheeses in house which have all been delicious. They have a menu of amazing breakfast and lunch sandwiches or you can build your own out of their deli case. I also love that they offer Taylor Ham which I had never tried before a friend recommended it to me and now I cannot turn back. Give it a try griddled with an egg and cheese on a bagel - you will thank me. Also they offer fresh Nova lox which is nearly impossible to find at a bagel shop around here.
They have a full espresso bar as well as delicious Intelligenista house coffee and fresh squeezed orange juice. The only critique I would offer is the size of the dining room is rather tiny. So if you go doing a prime time, I would probably plan on getting your food to go. But wherever you sit down to enjoy your food, you will not be disappointed!
Angel Oak is the latest occupant of this cute little spot on Savannah Highway just south of Main Road, and I have to say it is definitely my favorite so far. The husband and wife couple that have moved in here have really made it their own with lots of personal touches that really make the dining area feel like home. If you have been into this space previously, be prepared to enjoy a complete makeover. The main space now looks like a proper dining room and the servers are all well versed and friendly. We were warmly greeted by Nicole, one of the owners, and promptly seated.
All of their appetizers sounded intriguing so we tried a good variety. The winners were definitely the crab cake and the fried bacon. The crab cake was pure, sweet blue crab with just enough to hold it together and bring out the natural flavors. A spicy remoulade was drizzled across the plate that gave a nice balance. The fried bacon consisted of a plate of lightly battered, smoky thick cut bacon strips, paired with a spicy buffalo dipping sauce to amp up the flavor. The port wine pate was nice and creamy, and came potted in a little glass mason jar. It was paired well with toast points and vinegary pickled radishes and a nice chow-chow. The lobster mac and cheese sounded divine, but we found the cheese sauce to be too oily for our liking.
The entrees were all very tasty, generous portion sizes and expertly cooked. We sampled the braised short rib and shrimp and grits. The short rib was cooked perfectly, it flaked away with a fork and a gentle touch. This was definitely one of the most tender pieces of meat I have had in a while, and could only have been improved if a little more of the demi-glace was present. The stone ground grits it sat atop were creamy and hearty, and a buttery sauce and some micro-herbs brought it all together. The bang-bang shrimp and grits were decent, flecked with crisp bites of smoky bacon. However this dish needed a bit more gravy and spice to live up to its bangin name. The execution of all the dishes was top notch, technique is no issue here. However I think if the chef were a little more liberal with the seasoning and sauces he would have a home-run.
The wine list is extremely short and several essential varietals were noticeably absent. I would suggest a broader range of styles and prices to better appeal to the wine drinking crowd. The beer selection was broad and even featured some local brews. It appeared that the beer selection will vary on a rotational basis, with the current offerings displayed on a chalk board.
Overall, Angel Oak shows a lot of promise and I am excited to see a passionate team at the helm of this establishment. Having not even been open for a week, I think it is fair to say that they will only get better. The owner checked in on us throughout the meal to make sure we were enjoying ourselves. The little touches, like the slate serving platters, create a wonderful ambiance. We look forward to trying them again after they have had some time to work out the fine details. It is well worth the drive to give this place a try, it is downtown quality food in a more comfortable West Ashley environment.
Food was good, but not anything super special. Reasonbly priced for what is offered. Excellent wine options. Staff very knowledgeable about wine menu.
Always an enjoyable experience. Good food (had shish tawook and kofta so far) and a kind, attentive staff. Go donate at the Red Cross and reward yourself with a good meal next door.
I am interested in attending Saturday evening 8/4/2012 'cause of their entertainment and to try something from the menu: 'THE STUD FARM' with guitarist Jeff Bateman(if he is still in this band) and who's a really great musician.
Despite the blazing heat we sat on the patio area Saturday night. So glad we did. The herb garden and the GIANT tomato plant are a great backdrop to this "fancy barn" space. Our server, Ashley, was on point, knowledgeable and gave us great suggestions (including going to The Cocktail Club after our appetizers and drinks). We had the Ricotta Gnudi and the Tempera Squash Blossom. Great food and service to begin our date night downtown. As we walked through the dining room to exit, we were again very glad that we sat outside. The dining room is a very loud.
Great atmosphere. We sat at the bar on both trips to Octobachi and the service was awesome. Very friendly and knowledgeable staff. Sushi is really good, but basic. They only have a few rolls to choose from. The hibachi is really good, flavored well, and you get quite a lot of food. The fresh spring rolls are also really great. I love that they are very into the local scene. They seem to grow a lot of their own produce as well. The only big downfall is the Pho. It is not good. At all. It tasted as if they took a beef boullion cube and put it in a bowl of water with a few noodles and a bit of beef. I would really like to see them either hone this recipe or remove the item from the menu because it is really the only blemish on an otherwise stellar menu.
I lived on the west coast for years where Vietnamese and Thai restaurants were cheap, plentiful, and authentic. It's rare to find the same level of tastiness here. I wish I could remember the name of the shrimp and noodle dish I ordered...it was by far the best Vietnamese food (or any Asian food for that matter) I've had in Charleston. Perfectly flavored and spiced. The noodles were a perfect texture and the portion was enough to get full and take some home. My husband had a rice dish with several different types of meat that was good, too. And I'm glad they have Westbrook White Thai on the menu! There was a really friendly hostess and the server was nice enough-just very busy. My only complaint is that it was too loud in the restaurant. They were playing club music loud enough to make conversation difficult (we sat upstairs).
I had a sushi roll that was the special that night and it was fabulous. A couple of other sushi rolls off the menu were great, too. Fresh with a nice mix of textures. The sushi isn't cheap, but it isn't unreasonably priced for the quality compared to other places in town. I would not recommend the pho. It is too expensive, and the broth is completely flavorless. Even the accompanying condiments couldn't flavor it enough. The waiter was great-very friendly, laid back, and helpful. The tables are awful. If you so much as set a glass down they jiggle uncontrollably. Crossing your legs under the table or putting your hand on it as you stand up or sit down causes your drink to slosh out of your glass. I'd definitely go back for sushi, but I'd sit at the bar.
its been awhile but I have been to Alessandra's many times and I do not understand why there are no stars for the rating. The fettucine alfredo is superb! It tastes so fresh, you can tell that there is the freshest cream and butter in the sauce. They have one of the best tiramisius around. It is a very pleasant quiet spot for great food and service!
, I'm giving it 4 stars based on my experience. The happy hour is excellent: plentiful free pool tables and $1 Tecates (and when those ran out, they upgraded to a Costa Rican beer called Imperial.) The food is very good, especially for a place that identifies itself as a sports bar. We enjoyed the homemade tortilla chips and salsa and had no trouble getting to an open pool table at 5 pm. It appears as though renovations may not be complete yet...but the Mexican Day of the Dead murals that adorn the walls help set a fun vibe, as do the hand-painted, glowing skulls on the bar. We really enjoyed our appetizer sampler--the surprise hit for me being the fried pita bread. The Bacon-wrapped jalapenos were quite tasty too. My wife, who used to tend bar at a Latin bar, was blown away by her first rocks margarita, but had to ask them to remake the 2nd one...meaning it depends on who makes it. (Nicolette made the best one.)
The most important thing we noticed is that we could truly feel that everyone there is trying very hard to make this something good. Dollar beers and good food will get me in the door once. The attitude and effort being put forth have already brought me back for repeat trips.
Tried it out for the first time this week. Was very impressed with set-up, HH deals, and the tacos were great. Free pool, $1 Tecate, $2 tall boy PBR during HH (4-7pm). My two tacos were a lamb chorizo sausage wrapped in bacon with crispy onions and a spicy sauce, and a tempura baja fish with fresh red cabbage and cilantro n onions. Both huge, both super-tastey, 2 for $7. What's not to like there?
I'm sure some hyper-critical foodie D-bags will have something to say about this place (they always do...) To them I say tuck your Brooks Bro. shirt in, go eat at husk for the 3rd time this week en route to IOP for your beach day. This place is chill, friendly, good F&B at great price points. Should fit in nicely with the JI and FB crowds.
This has long been a stand-by for bringing out-of-town visitors due to the combination of reliably great food, an atmospheric setting, and reasonable prices. I have generally been pleased by the updated menu items I've tried. The recent (June, 2012) CP review has some negative comments on the scallops with pork belly, but it was a marriage made in heaven to me. My own first experience here came as part of a job interview some years ago, and that meal was part of what hooked me on moving to Charleston. There are better restaurants in Charleston, but they are not places I could go frequently. Poogan's Porch is my favorite in its class.
Friendly personable service, good quality deli meat for the sandwiches, good coffee, and it's all really reasonably priced. definitely a good neighborhood coffee shop, which are getting harder and harder to find anymore.
I was honestly worried about eating here after reading the reviews. The Hall's friendliness is a matter of taste. We went on a fairly quiet Sunday night, and I found the host to be very hospitable and very helpful. I would ask this of the extreme negative folks, would you rather your hosts at a restaurant be overly helpful or non-existent. I thought the server did extremely well with our group, he did a fine job of explaining the specials and explaining preparations of dishes (such as the "bacon steak"). The food was very good. Not great, but not good either. We had to send one steak back because it was underdone for one in the parties liking, but my steak was fine. The prices are on par with upper tier restaurants in this area, which in my opinion is overpriced anyway. Then again, I ask myself, how much business would they draw if they lowered prices by 5 dollars a plate, or 10 for the upper regions? Probably not much at all. It is a very nice place for a special night, one of the best in Charleston. I couldn't afford to eat there more than twice a year, but I wouldn't turn the place down. I'd have to eat at Oak now that Jeremiah Bacon is running the show in order to judge, I was not a fan when Brett McKee was over there. Hall's is very good, and I would eat there again.
We visited on a busy Friday night and the restaurant was packed. Luckily for us there was space at the community table and we were seated right away. Seeing the crowd I figured service would be slow, but I was wrong.
Our server was very attentive and cocktails and waters were provided almost immediately. The food came out quickly as well.
The atmosphere was great, my only reason for removing a star is that I found the tuna and mahi tacos to be quite bland. Still the rest of the meal was pretty good and the service was outstanding.
We will be returning
I just had dinner at Halls for the first time recently and I admit, I was a bit weary after reading some negative reviews concerning the food and the overly-friendly atmosphere. I went to dinner with as much of an open mind as possible though, and I'm happy to say that I was very pleasantly surprised. I was half expecting the fake, intrusive and unnecessary niceties described in previous reviews, but nothing was over-the-top. Yes, the owner was very friendly, but certainly not to the point where it was weird. We had a wonderful meal--the service was great, the food was excellent, and the atmosphere was warm. I would definitely go there again. And with food that good, they can welcome me as if we're long-lost relatives, I won't care!
Very good food from a concise menu in an interesting environment. I have recommended this place to others and look forward to eating there again.
Highs: the mole chicken (the best mole I've ever had and the chicken was tender and succulent); the lengua tacos (good enough for a 4-year-old to enjoy); the Dia de la Muerte decor; the frendliness of the staff; the rich and flavorful pork torta.
Lows: the queso fundido (tasted more like a bland alfredo), and the salsa was good enough but didn't have the fresh-herb/ingredient pop that the food did. They do need to tighten up the service routine, but we didn't have anything like the bad experiences described by others.
Miscellaneous: lots of parking, easy to get to, the owner seems well-involved and did come out and talk to us for a while.
Overall: a solid, rich menu in a very cool space without a huge price tag
I went as part of a trio on Saturday; 8pm no problem getting a seat (that won't last) but there was a solid crowd. There's no hostess station, you sorta meander upstairs if you don't want to sit at the bar. The music was quite loud downstairs, for better or worse, and permeated upstairs. I think they've mounted their subwoofers in the ceiling above the bar, which makes the benches upstairs vibrate. This might not be a negative.
Our server was knowledgeable about the menu, saying that they'd taken time to familiarize the staff with all the dishes. That was good. In addition to reasonably-priced (for Charleston) wine by the glass and bottle, they have several draughts (Westbrook White Thai, Kirin Ichiban, etc...) as well as interesting cocktails. I got this gin with ginger martini. DRINK THIS, but especially with your food.
Speaking of food: the 5-spice Pork Banh Mi is slap-your-momma, ridiculously good. The edamame spring rolls, shrimp dumplings, tofu and curry noodles are very good. The Vietnamese ramen bowl is just okay, but not anything that would sully the otherwise very good meal. I think its failing where the others succeeded so well was that it lacked any distinct, fresh-veggie/herb taste that leapt from the other dishes. The menu is great for sharing within a group, which we did.
With drinks and probably too much food for three, our bill was $24/person with tax, plus tip. Not bad.
They're getting lunch hours very soon (maybe already) as well as local delivery soon.
the food is seriously great! we started at the one downtown. the service sucked but the food was so good, we went back. there is no doubt that they take forever and dont fill your glass near as much as Americans would prefer, but this is the only place i would say it is worth it. we moved closer to summerville and are ecstatic that there is one close, so for the past three years we have been happy customers. summerville isnt packed like downtown so we get much better service.
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