The Charleston Grill. My mouth is watering just thinking about this restaurant. I have been to The Grill a couple of times and each experience preserves the Grill’s spot as my number 1 favorite restaurant in Charleston. The Grill is a very special restaurant and certainly a gem in Charleston. This restaurant is fine dining at its finest. It is an experience, a special occasion, a privilege, and a place that treats their guest like royalty. Oh and did I mention the famous Mickey Bakst, the GM? I work at Charleston Place Hotel and The Grill is the 5 Star restaurant in my hotel. When I worked at the front desk, it always made me laugh when tourist said they wanted a place to eat dinner, but didn’t want to stay in the hotel. HA naive idiots. I would have to explain how LUCKY we were to have this restaurant in our hotel and they would always thank me after. It’s hard sometimes to explain my true passion for this place without coming off as biased. Keep reading though and I guess you’ll see for yourself.
This past Friday, Kendall, Cory, Shelby, and I all went to the grill for Kendall’s birthday. All day I was preparing myself for an amazing dinner. The menu is split into four sections: Pure, Lush, Cosmopolitan, and Southern. Each section is composed of three different appetizers, three different entrees, and then a side dish. And of course you can mix and match from the different menus. We decided to order different dishes and pass the plates around (because there’s another way…?) The first dish was foie gras, because Kendall has been talking about it for days. Y’all. This. Dish. Is. Insane. Yes, foie gras can be scary…maybe if you’ve never had it and only know where it comes from. My Dad is not a big fan because of the preparation of it all, which we don’t need to get into. BUT how do you resist when this foie gras has the texture of bread pudding. It was the best first course ever because it resembled the last course-dessert. It was served with peaches in a sweet bourbon-molasses reduction that the foie gras was completely soaking in. It was placed over a grilled olive oil cake and as soon as it hit my tongue it melted. Mickey had brought out a sweet dessert type wine that you sip after each bite and I honestly was taken to cloud nine. This is definitely a special occasion dish.
The next small dish we devoured was their signature crab cake. The reason it’s a staple is because it is solely lump crab meat formed into a cake. There is no absurd breading or grease, what you taste is pure crab. And I can officially have credit to back this because I have experienced Maryland crab cakes (WOW) and now know what a true crab cake should be- and this is it. Their crab cake has a vinaigrette based infusion in it with hints of lime and a savory taste. Certainly the best crab cake in Charleston.
Now for the Thai fish. Our server had immediately recommended it and Mickey said it was a must so Thai fish it was. The first look for me is always significant because it prepares my mind and taste buds for what’s to follow. From the view of this dish, my expectations were already exceeded. I loved that it came out in a beautiful light red tomato base sauce with bright green sprouts and cut up green beans and then yellow grilled pineapple pieces floating to the top. The colors were radiant. Food presentation truly is an art and this dish nailed it. The fish was positioned in the center with a shrimp rind on top (same concept as a pork rind, but fried from shrimp) and all I had to do was slice through the fish and it collapsed into the sauce. This fish was so light and full of spice and tomato flavor and a heat that I can’t explain. Yall know I don’t do heat and lemme tell you..I couldn’t stop! This was a dish where the heat was the flavor and I loved it. I slurped up the entire dish with a spoon and recommend everyone to get in there and try this. And as Mickey would say, “Next to Suzanne Kassel, this fish is the best damn thing in the city.” 😉
The girls also ordered the tuna and scallop ceviche and the bucatini carbonara. The tuna and scallops were the perfect summer dish and also beautifully prepared. I love fresh sprouts because of the taste and how they enhance a dish’s appearance. Fruit mixed into a salad is also a plus in my cookbook (like my watermelon salad). The melon and grapefruit thrown into this dish with the ceviche all pulled together to create a very fresh juicy taste.
The carbonara I wasn’t expecting too much from because for me, it competed with the duck egg that use to be on the menu. This duck egg was, and probably still is, one of the best creations I’ve ever tasted. I’ve only had it twice and it has been a long time since and I’m still talking about it. It’s comprised of a poached duck egg over pasta with fried pork belly pieces, peas, and TRUFFLE oil. It was truly amazing and each bite left me in a bed of angel tears (this is a good thing). The carbonara I found similar with the addition of a creamy base to the pasta. It was certainly delicious…but I’ll never forget that poached duck egg.
A unique thing about the Grill is that they have live jazz music each evening. As we were finishing up, the band surprised Kendall and started playing Happy Birthday. Our server brought out dessert: the baked Alaska, and again The Grill wins. This is a sour cream ice cream dish with baked lemon meringue all around it with blue berry compote. We were rolling out of there.
The night was perfect and the service was beyond 5 Star. Now check it out for yourself!
Thanks for reading 🙂