Sunday, February 3, 2019

Valentine's Day Gift Ideas

Less than two weeks til Valentine's Day, have you thought about what you're getting your sweetie?  Sure, you could make dinner reservations at any one of Charleston's fine eating establishments. But, why not try something different this year?

Below are a few ideas (strong suggestions if my Mr. is reading 😊 ):

  • Manicure or pedicure- The Water Room, located in the Cigar Factory, 701 East Bay St, Suite 105. Trust me, this is the real deal nail salon.  No strange odors, no frankenchemically made gel polishes or removers.
  • Champagne- Camellias Champagne Bar at Hotel Bennett.  The wait is over! Two decades in the making, Hotel Bennett is open.  And, how spectacular it is! Head over to Camellias Champagne Bar for Valentine's Day and grab a glass (or two) of rosé for $12.  Did I mention that the bar is painted pink??
  • Chocolate- Christophe Artisan Chocolatier, with locations downtown (90 Society St) and in West Ashley (1901 Ashley River Rd), your sweetest dreams have come true. You can't go wrong with a box of artisan chocolates, a chocolate bar, macarons, or some other bakery item.  If you're looking for something that lasts a little longer, consider gifting one of Christophe's classes
  • Adventure- Wild Blue Ropes Adventure Park, 1595 Highland Avenue, James Island.  This is something for the brave...and not so brave.  I've done Wild Blue Ropes several times.  Each time challenging myself to go a little farther and a little higher.  WBR is offering Valentine's Date Night on February 14, 2019 for $50 per couple.
I'm off to get my Valentine's festivities planned.  💕

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Poogan's Porch Rollback 2019

Charleston Restaurant Week has come and gone (insert sad emoji). If you're still hungry for more deals, Poogan's Porch (72 Queen St) has you covered.

From January 21-February 12, 2019, Poogan's will be rolling back its prices by 40% on some of its most popular menu items.  You can view the rollback menu here.

To continue riding the savings train, Poogan's Smokehouse (188 E. Bay St) will be offering 20% of its dinner menu through February 12th.  Go ahead and get yourself an order of the Buffalo pork rinds as a starter :) 

Tip Thursday: Parking can be a challenge in Charleston.  Metered street parking requires payment Monday through Saturday from 9 am -10 pm.  The parking rate is $2/hour with a limit of two hours. If you want to grab a quick bite or coffee BEFORE 9 am or after 10 pm, parking's free.  Metered parking is also free on Sundays and official city holidays.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Charleston Restaurant Week-2019

It's the yummiest time of year here in Charleston--Restaurant Week.

Charleston Restaurant Week is in full swing! This year it runs from January 9-20th.  Over 100 restaurants in the Charleston area are participating.

There's something for everyone-BBQ, seafood, lowcountry, Italian, French, etc. All restaurants are offering dinner specials; some brunch/lunch specials.

Make those reservations as quickly as you can!

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Seabrook Island Restaurants

Before we head out to explore the restaurants of Seabrook, Kiawah, and John's Island, we need a game plan.  We need a map!

Below is a current list (as of January 2019) of all the restaurants on the islands.  Some restaurants are old favorites (I'm talking about you Fischer's); some are quickly becoming my family's go-to place (can I get a cheer for McCann's Irish Pub?).

Seabrook Island:

1. McCann’s Irish Pub-located outside SBI gate, 1001 Landfall Way
2. Fischer’s Sports Pub–Bohicket Marina 2/1/2019--Temporarily Closed
3. Lokal Seabar-Bohicket Marina 2/1/2019--Temporarily Closed
4. La Fogata Mexican- Bohicket Marina
5. Lucky Luciano’s Pizzeria-Bohicket Marina
6. The Ice Cream Boat- Bohicket Marina
7. Red’s Ice House CLOSED

Freshfields Village:

1. La Tela Pizzeria
2. Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream
3. Fuji Sushi
4. Cantina 76
5. Porch Bar at The Andell Inn
6. King St Grille
7. 48 Wine Bar
8. Java Java Coffee
9. Hege’s
10. Ladles Homemade Soups
11. Vincent’s Soda Fountain
12. The Station Deli
13. Harris Teeter- made to order

Kiawah Island Resort:

1. The Ocean Room-The Sanctuary Hotel
2. The Sushi Lounge-The Sanctuary Hotel
3. The Bar-The Sanctuary Hotel
4. Jasmine Porch- The Sanctuary Hotel
5. Loggerhead Grill- The Sanctuary Hotel
6. Beaches & Cream- The Sanctuary Hotel
7. The Atlantic Room-The Ocean Course
8. Ryder Cup Bar-The Ocean Course
9. Tomasso-Turtle Point Golf
10. Cherry Wood BBQ & Ale House- Osprey Golf 
11. Night Heron Grill-Night Heron Park
12. The Market at Town Center

John’s Island:

1. Kava Coffee-4430 Betsy Kerrison Pkwy
2. Crave Smokehouse- CLOSED
3. Roadside Seafood- 3966 Betsy Kerrison Pkwy
4. Sunrise Bistro- 1797 Main Rd
5. Stono Market and Tomato Shed Café- 842 Main Rd
6. Gilligan’s Seafood- 160 Main Rd
7. Baker & The Farmer- 3338 Maybank Hwy 2/1/2019--Closed at the location
8. Tattooed Moose- 3328 Maybank Hwy
9. Krazy Owls- 3157 Maybank Hwy
10. Seanachi Irish Pub- 3157-B Maybank Hwy
11. Southern General- 3157-E Maybank Hwy
12. Fat Hen- 3140 Maybank Hwy
13. The Royal Tern- 3005 Maybank Hwy
14. Wild Olive- 2867 Maybank Hwy
15. Low Tide Brewing- 2863 Maybank Hwy
16. Fuyu Fusion- 2817 Maybank Hwy
17. Maria’s Mexican Grill- 2817 Maybank Hwy
18. JI Pizza- 2770 Maybank Hwy
19. Pluff Mudd Seafood Shack-COMING SOON (Spring 2019)-3605 Maybank Hwy

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Happy New Year!!

Welcome to 2019!  Wait, what??  It's been over two years since I last posted?  Why does real life get in the way of online life? 😃

We've got a lot of catching up to do.  Let's start with my word of the year for 2019 (I gave up on "resolutions" years ago!)--EXPLORE.  Pretty bold for a semi-introvert.

This year I want to EXPLORE more around my neighborhood.  There have been a few changes in the Seabrook Island/Kiawah Island restaurant scene.

Shall we tackle Charleston's new restaurants too! (So many comings and goings; Did you know THE Sean Brock left Chs for Nashville?)  Put on your stretchy pants and let's eat!

We can work off calories as we EXPLORE some of Charleston's popular (and not so popular) tourists' sights.  Maybe a quick day trip or two?

Who's up for sports? Maybe this will be the year I get myself out to Daniel Island for the Volvo Car Open to watch world class women's tennis?  Or maybe I'll dust off my golf clubs and play a few holes of golf?

Pack your Dora the Explorer backpack! We've got some exploring to do!

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Whiskey Wednesday

Howdy, partner!  It's Derby Week!

Several weeks ago I shared my preference for watching horses instead of riding them. :)  I get giddy this time of year. The first Saturday of May means Kentucky Derby time!

This year I'll be traveling on Derby Day and will have to watch the race from the comfort of my hotel room.  Being Derby Week means you are free to partake, er, practice test mint juleps before the big event.

The mint julep is a simple cocktail--crushed ice, mint simple syrup, and BOURBON.

I tweaked my mint simple syrup recipe and the results are delightful!
  • 2-4 cups chopped mint (feel free to use stems and all)
  • 1 1/2-2 cups turbinado sugar e.g. Sugar in the Raw brand (turbinado is light brown in color and will impart a nice color. At least I think the brown of the mint simple syrup looks well suited for the bourbon)
  • 1 cup water
Mix the sugar and water in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly to melt the sugar.  Do not boil.  That's another recipe ;). When the sugar has completely dissolved, remove from cooktop.  Add chopped mint.  Allow the mint syrup to cool.  Once cooled, strain the syrup into a jar--a mason jar, or any ol' screw top jar--being sure to keep the mint OUT of the jar.  Discard the "cooked" mint. The simple syrup will keep in the refrigerator for 2-3 weeks.  

Now step back and have a good look at your wondrous creation! But not too long, we've got a mint julep to make!

Mint julep cocktail:

1/2 oz Mint Simple Syrup
2 oz Bourbon
Fresh Mint Leaves
Crushed Ice
Optional: Cocktail straw and mint as garnish 

Add a few mint leaves and mint simple syrup to a chilled mint julep cup, crushing the mint leaves to impart more flavor (feel free to use a lowball or old-fashioned glass).  Pack cup with crushed ice.  Pour bourbon over ice.  Insert straw and give the cocktail a stir.  Add mint sprig for garnish. Now enjoy your Kentucky creation!
mint julep

BTW, Derby is a family affair for us.  My daughter, who lives up "north", will be hosting her own Derby party again this year.  I have it on good authority that she has already baked her pecan tassies.  She'll be prepping her toasted pecans and toasted ham and turkey sliders next.  Bookmark her website, Olive & Clark, find out what else she's cooking up for The Kentucky Derby.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Fearless Friday-Traveling Alone

When you're a parent, you rarely get time away with your partner.  Alone "mommy time" happens once in a blue moon.  Well, it's my blue moon time!

I'm traveling to the big city of Chicago this weekend all by myself.  My older daughter lives there so it's not as if I will be ALONE the entire weekend (plus she's cat sitting so I'll have three cats to keep me company during the day).

I'm in charge of getting from O'hare Airport to my daughter's office then to her apartment ALL BY MYSELF.

Ummm, can you keep a secret?  I'm just a wee bit skeered.  A fifty year old woman shouldn't be nervous about hailing her own cab but I am.

This weekend will be a good test of my gumption.

How will you test yourself this weekend??