We went on a cold, rainy, weekday evening a couple of weeks ago. Edmund's Oast had only recently opened and it was packed, which we expected. The space was nice and you'd never know it used to be a decorative hardware store. As soon as we walked in I knew it was the wrong place for me, though. I don't own skinny jeans or a plaid shirt with snaps. I don't wear loafers without socks and a sweater around my neck. These trappings, along with a zeal for obscure pale ales, seemed to be key components of the clientele.
We were seated at a communal table and given menus, which we could barely read between the very low light and the poor choice of font. I hadn't heard of any of the beers so I had to ask for something that wasn't hop-driven since I don't like bitter beers. The server recommended two and I chose one at random. It was pretty good but not especially memorable.
We ordered a small charcuterie platter ($12) and roasted Brussels sprouts ($6) to start. For main courses we tried the seared triggerfish ($26) and miso rubbed pork loin ($26). Both the Brussels sprouts and charcuterie were tasty, but both portions were very small. The triggerfish was slightly overcooked and a minuscule portion, but tasty. The miso rubbed pork loin was cooked nicely but also small and almost devoid of flavor. Miso packs a punch but it was completely missing. The dashi had not even a hint of the smoky ham hock flavor that was promised. I love pea pistou but this tasted like a parsley chimichurri instead. In general I felt the food was okay and had potential but was overpriced by about 25%.
I wouldn't mind going back when it warms up, sitting outside at a table and having a beer, then moving on somewhere else for a meal.
I didn't go there for the beer (so my rating is for the food only)... and had the Pork Schnitzel and Kaesespaetzle twice now. 1st time I was positively surprised by the taste, 2nd time 2 weeks ago not so much - the Schnitzel was not cooked/fairly raw and the batter didn't even stick to the meat; the Kaesespaetzle had more cheese than Spaetzle and was more like a soup. I know how it's done right, I'm a German. At the community tables it's disruptive if someone wants to use their cards...you got to move out of the way and it seems hard to keep the tables bussed..so you kind of put the previous guest's dishes away to the side yourself and hope a waiter/waitress doesn't think it's yours.
The staff is friendly and accomodating; the atmosphere fairly loud inside and it's a loooong wait for a table. I like the interior and the outside. Hopefully this place gets the kinks worked out - has lots of potential to be the IT-spot.
Was really looking forward to this place for so long. I've been for lunch and an early afternoon beer, and it is tolerable then. The lunch food I thought was great and pretty affordable. Service at night, though, is pretty terrible (especially if you're a dude). Good luck getting a drink at the bar...and paying a little too much for it. I would just ignore the beer card thing if its not for you...
Had great beers but spent $40 bucks on 4 beers...and I poured my own beers... don't volunteer to buy a round at this place...
The bier card was a golden opportunity to set BSB apart from the pool of comparable establishments. If anything, that should have been focused on for success only. Otherwise when you come down to saying that outside of the bier card, you are just like everywhere else, that really hurts in promoting your brand. If you are just like everywhere else, why don't I just go everywhere else?
I will cut some slack on the servers and their lack of knowledge since that takes time for most new places to overcome. I may try BSB again in a couple of months to see if they have improved. But if they are either no different or if what makes them different is not better, then I don't expect this to be a true and successful biergarten for the many in Charleston who are well-versed in beer.
It's frustrating because if you want to order a beer from the taps throughout the restaurant you have to use a prepaid card which charges you by the oz even if only foam comes out. Also hard to view the selection of taps when the restaurant is busy also feels like you're intruding on other customers dinner if you want to go get a specific beer. Then if you want to order from the bar or waitress you only have 13 beer options total. I see what they were trying to do but didn't quite enjoy the experience.
I enjoyed Bay Street Biergarten's beer selection but have to agree with the others that the prepaid card is a scam. Watch out for the free pour, the get you by charging you for half of a glass of head each time a keg is changed. I paid 60$ for a card and was denied my Bombay Sapphire gin martini at the bar, which is unacceptable. And also, what's the deal with the community tables and the fact that one person has to pick up the whole tab? That's not how a community table operates. I like how the poster 'easydoesit' gives the restaurant 5 stars in order to bash a fellow reviewer. That smells of an inside job. Hilarious! In other news, the beef jerky was great!
Have a drink, enjoy the courtyard, skip the food.
The food is so great here! However, that's where it stops! Service is very poor. The management, if there is any, is very poor and it shows.
I work on Broad Street, which doesn't have that many choices to grab a quick lunch. I've eaten here plenty of times, mainly because it's just a few steps from my office. Honestly, the food isn't bad, but it's overpriced. The service, though is horrible. I went in the other day to pick up a to go order and gave the young waitress a $20 before she gave me a check. I knew my food cost $8 (not including tax) and she gave me back $9 in change, still no receipt. I told her that my meal didn't cost $11 and she said "oh, I got confused. I meant to give you back $11." So, she gave me two more bucks, no change. I'm sure tax didn't total exactly a dollar. In the same experience, I saw the other waitress sneeze into her hands twice and not bother to wash her hands afterwards. I could go on and on about other times of bad service, which is pretty much every time I go in there. Honestly, after reading that other review about the chef not washing his hands once after handling various meats, I think I'm done eating there. However, I will still go to their outdoor patio to enjoy a drink or two because let's face it, that's the best thing about that place.
Excellent decor, less than acceptable service. Understandably, the bartender was alone. They would do well to have a more experienced tender flying solo. Frankly, I would be very surprised if the management knew their employees (if they are employees) were on a review page giving lip service to customers. Maybe is a little more indicative of their service and attitude than I normally give reviews credit for. Place has great potential.
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