I finally made it into the peninsula to visit Craftsmen Kitchen, after a couple month wait for opening day. When you first walk in the door, you can tell there was a lot of money invested into design and decor. I really enjoyed the ambiance with the focus around a beautiful series of bars. There was plenty of space inside, and also an outdoor area with 4 large picnic tables.
The menu was very basic. One side had appetizers and smaller dishes. The other side featured more entree-like options. The waitress also gave us a large tap/bottled drink menu. My first thought, after glancing at the drink menu, was that it contained a lot of confusion. They tried to split things up by flavor profile, but didn't really get it right. There was a section for hoppy/IPA type beers, a section for local brews, a section for malt forward beers, and one other that I can't remember. The IPA/Hoppy section was fine, and featured many great brews. I am not sure there was a reason to separate the locals from the style based menu, as we didn't know exactly what flavor profile fit some of the local brews. The malty beer section was a complete cluster. There were pale ales (Hoppy), belgians, browns, and stouts all mixed in there. Those styles do not all fit the same flavor profile. I would have preferred them to not worry about style and just list all beers by brewery, or perhaps take time to separate by more than a couple flavor profiles. I didn't take time to check if most of the beers listed on the menu were actually on tap, but I didn't have any issues with my orders. The beer selection, while numerous, was not really impressive for a craft beer bar. It seemed like the had the normal basic offerings from many breweries, without carrying many seasonals or limited releases. I found it difficult to pick out a beer I really wanted to drink, but I am probably pickier than most patrons. I did like the option to have 8oz or 16oz pours, but I am not 100% sure the tumblers they use actually hold 16oz. The prices were a touch high, but that could be par for the course when you are a block from the market. The beers were served in clean glassware and seemed to be about the right temperature. My only suggestion there would be to use proper glassware for the style, but that is really asking for a lot.
Once we had a few drinks, we decided to order a few food items. We wanted to try two appetizers and a couple sandwiches. We ordered the Scotch Eggs (hard to find in the low country) and General Tso's Chicken Wings. The wings were really tasty, and they nailed the sauce. It was a nice mix of sweet and spice, and went well with the base crispy wings. The scotch eggs were not exactly what I am used to, but still very good. You only get one large egg, cut in half, so take note if you are sharing with a few people. My main course was the burger, which is made with house ground beef and some added pork belly in the mix. Pork belly makes for some delicious burgers, but also prevents you from getting a rare or medium-rare burger. It took quite a while to receive my burger, but we were in a large party. The burger comes with some thick cut fried potato rounds, but you only get 4 of these. If you are really hungry, it is better that you order more than just the burger. I did enjoy the seasoning on the burger, and would eat it again. I do wish there was more of a side with this. The other dish we got was the crispy pork belly sandwich. Basically, this is a piece of fried pork belly, between two pieces of toast, with a fried runny egg on top. I am not sure why the egg goes on top, as it makes the dish excessively messy. The belly was a touch overcooked, but the whole sandwich was still pretty good. This also cam with the small side of fried potato rounds.
Overall, I think this is a place worth checking out if you like craft beer. They are still very new and will probably be working on things like tap offerings and food. I think my expectations were a bit too high, due to years of drinking craft beer. I will likely return to see if they fall into a groove with food and beer selection. I wish them luck and much success. I am still happy to see another craft-centric bar in downtown Charleston, which covers a growing market of better beer drinkers.
I have eaten at Hall's a few times. Most were business related and we did not really worry about the cost. I have eaten a lot of steaks in my time, and these were OK. Not the magnificent works of art the friends of Halls has described, but OK steaks. For the price, and and the amount of time needed to go through the "experience" I will eat some place else when it comes to my money. I am often asked where a good steak house is in Charleston. Oak is great and worth the money, but you can find other good restaurants in Chas. that are about half the cost.
Definitely think this event is overrated. We paid the $150 for each of us to be VIP, not to be confused with the VIP TABLE that was $1,000 for 6 people to have their own table. With the VIP ticket we were able to get a better liquor selection and access to the second floor. We were pretty excited for this event, but we were definitely let down. Last year we attending the Snyder Grand Ball right next store to the Hippodrome so I'm largely comparing my experience to the Aquarium's party.
-The imax area was very big and open which allowed for us to interact with friends without having to scream at each other while listening to a pretty good band
-The lines for drinks weren't very long, waited 5 minutes max for a drink
-Organization wasn't bad, waited about 10 minutes in line outside to get in. Pretty quick check in
-The VIP table members were taking seats from other tables and using end tables to sit on because there wasn't enough seating for the VIP table guests.
-The appetizers weren't very appetizing. I don't think warm deviled eggs go very well with whiskey. I was hoping for food a little more recognizable, not just slices of cucumber rolled up with some pinkish looking mayonnaise stuffed in it
-There weren't any tables or chairs to sit your drink on unless you went into the imax room in which case you can sit in those seats. But you're pretty much SOL for sitting down or having a table unless you get the VIP table
Next year we're just paying the $130 for the aquarium party where you get a much better selection of appetizers/food and seating available to everyone. I don't think the extra $40 was worth it for the VIP ticket. I'm not that picky with my alcohol and honestly, I would've been fine never stepping foot on the second floor. To me, it was an overpriced house party which we could've went to Red's for almost half of what we paid and got the same experience.
I agree about the view, the food, etc. But there ain't nothing 'gracious' about the service. We laughingly call the man behind the counter "the bar nazi". Still we suffer his rudeness for the sunsets and oysters! Like they say at Bowens " some like it, some don't".
I've been to Condon's on a number of occasions, and find the food adequate, but certainly not Irish. The best thing about the place is the draft beer selection. Although expensive, it allows one an opportunity to sample beers from all over the world. The music at night is entertaining and peppy, but Condon's is definitely set up for the occasional tourist visit. It appears to be doing well in that regard.
My hubby and I went to check the place out for the first time tonight, and I gave it 3 stars bc I did like the atmosphere. We thought the chips and salsa were yummy, as the salsa was good and spicy with some kind of fruit in it? Good stuff! The frozen screw driver tasted was not too good, and I thought my margarita wasn't too good. My husband's lamb taco was really good! My fish taco was fishy though ugh, so that was disappointing. We live on Ji, so appreciate the JI vibe, but for food sorry but we both agreed we'd stick to Zia. The place is new though, so hopefully the food will get better! Overall cool joint to hang out!
I've been to this place 3-4 times in the last year. The food is actually pretty decent, but the atmosphere and service not so much. We go in there for dinner during the week when it does not seem to be very busy. The acoustics are terrible and the food is always slow to come out. I would go there more often for the food, but I just get annoyed with the lack luster service and too laid back attitude from the staff.
Smokey Oak fills the late night parking lot. Smokey Oak is small with a patio when you love the outdoor heat & bugs. If you want great barbeque, drive out EARLY along Maybank all the way to JB's SmokeShack early Wed-Sat... late night HOME TEAM BBQ is GREAT IN WEST ASHLEY and on Sullivan's Island. I'm going back to Smokey Oak when we visit James Island friends. Beer snobs learn the difference between bock & tap
"Locals" place. Friendly. Older crowd. Some pretty decent pool tables but they shoot league a couple of times a week and it takes up all the tables so it might not be your first choice of someplace to go to shoot pool. Not the fastest bartenders in the world but they make do. Not much of a karaoke crowd but I think that's as much to do with the substandard karaoke system as anything else. Worth your time to swing by for a cold in the evening before heading off somewhere else.
Wow, glad you read my 2 year old review and the rest of them. I probably go to Foster's twice a month, so I don't think Craig would want me to stay home. Many of my early comments were in fact addressed. For a while, I thought the food was stepping up (had a cheesesteak sandwich special that was really good), lately it may have slipped a little.
I can usually find a decent beer here and the food is good. This place continues to be in my rotation. Is it a 5 star as you report, definitely not, but it is a good neighborhood pub with above average beer. I think Craig is a good guy, and the staff at the bar has always been friendly.
I give detailed honest reviews and don't throw 5 stars out at every place. City Paper does not define their stars, but most reataurant guides see 1 star as recommended. 5 is typically reserved for a place that you would drive 200 miles out of your way for (3 to me denotes good). Owners can use my free assessment to improve or not. If they improve, I will go back as is the case with Foster's. Some places are not geared towards my tastes, or do not care to be.
My wife and I have been about 3 times in the last year. Every time we have been there haven't been more than one or two at the bar and a few people eating. Not sure how they stay open. With that said the burgers were good and the beer okay. Would like to see a better selection of draft beer but all in all each time has been a good experience. I just wish they would clean and lighten the place up - it dosen't feel very clean. Could be that it has dark walls and furnishings.
Saturday night after some debate we decided we still wanted pizza but wanted to try something new. We picked EVO due to CCP's reviews.
Point of fact I would like to make first, I never order pizza from chain stores. They are overpriced, over sauced and the pizza is usually lousy.
We were probably the oldest couple in the place being in our (very) late 40's, as we looked over the menu I could not tell if we were in a pizza place or not. I couldn’t find most of our favorite toppings on the menu but the one I did find was $3! Strike one.
After looking at the beer prices I felt it necessary to ask the server if the price was reflecting any sort of stock option in the brewing company.
There wasn't any sort of normal beer to choose from. They had what seemed like dozens of craft beers. I have had these beers before, I did like “Theobroma” from Dogfish but it isn't easy to find anymore. There are certain foods that I demand a decent beer for such as, cheeseburgers, fish & chips and PIZZA. I will drink Guinness with any food on the planet but I was told they didn’t have that on tap or in a bottle. Strike two. (Thank goodness we were not far away from Madra Rua Pub.)
After looking the menu over for 10 minutes or so and having the server come by every 2 minutes to get our order we decided to just order the Focaccia appetizer and two drinks. The server asked if we were ordering anything else and we declined because there wasn’t anything we wanted to eat on the menu, the server got snippy and disappeared. After 20 minutes we got our drinks and a plate of the Focaccia and oil. We needed more oil because the Focaccia was not stale but hard from being too close to the ovens maybe? (I would suggest a few shakes of a good Modena Balsamic Vinegar along with the oil for the Focaccia) Strike three.
I am not sure where the young people who were in there work, but they must be making more money than this engineer. I see no reason at all for the prices of the food and more importantly the beer.
After a few pints of Guinness down the street we picked up a pizza on our way home. Don't worry Mr Baroni, we will never be unfaithful to Baroni’s NY Pizza again!!
It's the Fair, what to you expect? Charleston debutants in their best? People watching is one of the best parts of going to the Fair. We went to the fair last night and had a blast. Got there at 5 after a 20 minute ride from downtown. Did some kids rides with our 1 year old son, had obligatory fair food (gyro, chicken on a stick, and a fried candy bar), did a few adult rides, left and back downtown by 8.
Highs: genuinely friendly staff, yummy burgers/sandwiches, jam-if-you want live music setup.
Lows: EXPENSIVE ($28 for sandwiches and tea for two), and it is a strange mix of "new" and "dive"
I liked this place; it is completely un-pretentious, the food was solid, and they have a nice outdoor setting. Draught selection looked good. They even have karaoke. But seriously too expensive in general.
I picked up a to go order today because I was at the Citadel Mall Target and it was convenient. I have eaten at Sesame before and it's been pretty good, but with all the burger places in town it isn't my favorite. Anyway, after driving to work with my burger, which I asked to be cooked medium, I took a few bites and realized it was raw. Charred on the outer 1/2 inch and on the inside it had the color and consistency of raw meat. I called and talked to the manager who was very nice and said he would refund my money. When I went back, the manager was friendly and accommodating, but the weird thing was that he said "they didn't tell you it was going to be pink throughout when you ordered medium?" This burger was in the "not cooked enough to be served legally" category as far as I'm concerned.
I have dined here two or three times. The first time I went by myself and was just cathcing a bite to eat. The other time I went with my father and he paid so I imagine I only have positive things to say. It is in a quiet part of town. I had to wait for a good seat. The place is pretty nice and like any Wild Wings it has interesting decor. The food was alright. I would recommend this
restaurant to anyone.
The food is okay but the patrons are awful. And if you chose to sit outside, prepare to be glared at by the waitstaff...
I love EVO, especially their employees, the Pestachio Pesto pizza, and the amazing chocolate, but I must agree 100% on the out of control beer prices. I paid $8 last year for a Coast Boy King pint, then the next week went around the corner to Sesame and paid $4 for the exact same thing. I've also paid $8 for Dogfish Head before, which is ridiculous (as are the New Belgium prices). I love going there for the ambience, food, and people, but it's turned into a special occasion restaurant rather than a neighborhood craft beer hangout.
THE SHOW WAS GREAT, BUT WHEN WE BOUGHT VIP TICKET WE WERE TOLD THAT YOU WILL GET TWO DRINK & SOMETHING TO EAT. EVERYONE AT THE EVENT AT DUMP DUMP LIKE THEY DON'T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT THIS. I THANK THEY SHOULD REFUND SOME MONEY OR GIVE THOSE PEOPLE A DISCONT ON THERE NEXT TICKET THEY WON'T GET AGAIN I WILL RAISE HELLLLLL.
Up until recently I would have given the Pour House four stars. You have the best deck in Charleston. But the drink prices have increased enormously. King Street prices on Maybank Hwy? Did you think we were too drunk to notice? We weren't. Now we have to think about coming out. I do appreciate that you will now wipe off a dirty table instead of handing me the bar rag and the fact that you occasionally come around to collect empty bottles and plates does help to keep the flies away. $3 PBR $5 draft $6 liquor To quote Seth Meyers - "Really?"
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