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Despite the prominence of grilled and smoked meats at this Lowcountry-inspired Mexican spot, owners Stephanie and Craig Bente make good on their claim of offering lighter, healthier versions of Tex-Mex favorites like nachos, quesadillas, tacos, fajitas, chile rellenos, burritos, and chimichangas. Most of the standards come with a choice of expertly cooked and smoked meats like citrus chicken breast, pulled pork, and brisket — along with all the toppings you'd expect. Caliente's locale is unique too; it occupies a cool roadside shack on Highway 17 near Main Road on Johns Island. As their fanbase grows, the Bentes plan on offering a varying, seasonal menu to take advantage of the abundance of high quality local produce available nearby. And when you eat at this Mexican joint, save room for dessert. Stephanie is an accomplished pastry chef who makes seriously tempting desserts. —Brys Stephens, Dish (Summer 2011)

Restaurant Details

Lowcountry Mexican fare with a fresher, healthier focus. Puffy tacos, black bean soup, oven-roasted chili poblanos, plus housemade desserts.

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Hours: L & D. Sun. brunch. Closed Mon.
Price: $$

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