Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Our Restaurant Week Experience: Social Wine Bar and Grill 225

I have ranted and raved ad nauseum in From The Land of Palm Trees regarding the joys of living in a place where world class dining is literally available to us at any time the mood strikes and the extra cash allows. The Lowcountry and in particular Charleston provides ample opportunities for fine dining and twice a year, the availability of fine dining at much reduced rates presents itself in the form of Charleston Restaurant Week. We got together with our friends Jeff and Lisa, also transplants from West Virginia, and decided a couple of weeks ago to give Grill 225 in The Market Pavillion Hotel a try. We had never dined there before, but we always comment to each other about the doorman decked out in uniform and top hat stationed on the sidewalk in front of the hotel and grill entrance. We also frequently steal a peak through the side windows into the beautiful dining room that is streetside in the heart of Historic Charleston.

Saturday was an absolutely perfect day in The Land of Palm Trees, so after a casual day spent at home with morning coffee on the lower front piazza and a nice walk around the neighborhood followed by a day of college football on television, Michelle and I got "cleaned up" and headed downtown to meet our friends at Social Wine Bar for happy hour. I got a kick out of the hostess at Social, when I called ahead to check on availability for our party of four I asked if they could accomodate us with seating for happy hour and not dinner. To which she replied, "well we can accomodate you but we are not having happy hour this evening," to which I replied, "well you may not be having happy hour, but we are..." She laughed, of course she was referring to the lack of happy hour specials. Turns out, Social was the perfect spot to get things started for our grand evening out. After a round of Allagash White beers for Jeff and I, a glass of Chilean Chardonnay for Michelle and a bit of Sangria for Lisa, it was out the door and down East Bay Street to Grill 225.

It was Saturday night in our WONDERFUL city by the sea which we now call home and bachelorette parties were abundant. The ladies on our arms, bachelorette days behind them, were most impressed with Cinderellas Carriage, as it pulled up in front of Grill 225. Jeff and I, not so pleased as we realized that we missed the opportunity to provide a perfect arrival for our princesses. Oh well, maybe next time.

Once seated at Grill 225, our white linen clad servers began taking care of us with impeccable attention to detail. The menus at Grill 225 are very, very tall, reminding me somewhat of the HUGE workbooks we used to use when I was in the first grade, yes, that tall. I apologize for not taking any pictures of our meal at Grill 225, instead I will provide you with a photo from their website. The scene was just to elegant and sophisticated to go about snapping pictures. The Grill 225 aspires to be one of the great steakhouses in America, and based upon my USDA Prime wet-aged rib eye steak, they are certainly in the neighborhood of great American steakhouses.

We finished our grand evening with a leisurely stroll around town, admiring the view down Church Street toward St Michaels. And wouldn't you know it Michelle found a new treasure, the newly opened Tervis Tumbler shop on the corner at 179 Church Street. Of course, Jeff found a friend down the street and stopped to say hello, and what had promised to be a great day for us in From The Land of Palm Trees came to an end. Everytime that we spend an evening downtown in Historic Charleston surrounded by tourists and visitors traveling here from around the world, I am reminded how lucky I am that I have a pioneer spirit that allowed me to have the courage to become a resident, and not just a visitor to the Holy City. I hope you are having a great day, wherever your pioneer spirit has lead you.


  1. Love restaurant week and your report. So sad that I am not back home yet to participate, we did last year. Always wanted to try GRill 225, maybe January!

  2. Right on! Why just visit when you can live in this amazing place?! Scott and I need to save our pennies to hit up Grill 225 next Restaurant Week go around. We're big fans of Social, though - their normal happy hour specials are the best in the city!


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