July 29, 2013

Charleston, Part Two: The Ordinary and More

Continuing on with some more food pics from our quick visit to Charleston a couple of weekends ago. We had an excellent meal Saturday night at Mike Lata's newest restaurant, The Ordinary.

Set in a refurbished old bank building, The Ordinary feels huge inside, due in part to the two story high ceilings and oversized windows that throw a lot of light around the large space. I didn't take any pics of the room inside, but my buddy EatItAtlanta did, so see here to get a feel. The Ordinary's menu is a celebration of coastal Carolina food, with nods to the northeast coast of the U.S. as well.
I said in my post on McCrady's that the lamb belly there was the best thing I ate all weekend. Well, the crispy oyster dish with beef tartare pictured above is the other best thing I ate all weekend. The mix of hot, crispy, salty oyster with cool, richness of the raw beef was a near perfect taste and texture experience. Pretty to look at as well.
Standish shore oysters from Duxbury, MA. Awesome.
Smoked trout pate with American caviar.
Our server recommended the mussels, and to be honest, it was probably one of the last things on my mind when I looked at the menu. However, it was a really strong dish, memorable due to the intensely rich, garlic and wine broth. Great with that crusty bread. If I lived in the area, I could see myself eating often at The Ordinary. Should mention also that The Ordinary charges a very reasonable $15 corkage as long as the wine you bring in is not on their list.
The Ordinary on Urbanspoon
We also had lunch during the trip at Two Boroughs Larder. Two Boroughs Larder feels like it would be at home in Decatur. Slightly hippie (in all the best ways), the restaurant serves seasonal local cuisine with well-thought out list of wines and beers. There are also specialty pantry items and tableware on the shelves around the space.
Everything on the always-changing menu sounded great, but I settled on the pork neck sandwich with farro, pickled red onion, heirloom tomato, greens. Served hot with pork jus. Not much to not love in that sandwich.
Daily bowl 'o noodles. It was pouring rain that day, and we arrived soaking wet, so despite the fact that is was Charleston in July, the ramen bowl hit the spot. Benne seeds really adding to the smoky-sesame flavor of the broth.
On the way out of town we stopped at Hominy Grill for brunch.
Low country omelet with Carolina red rice and shrimp gravy. Was good, but just that, and it was time to get of town anyway. We sure ate well in Charleston; I'm already looking forward to my next visit.

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