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Hilton Head Dining

A link to the past

ROADSIDE FOOD STANDS STEEPEDIN HILTON HEAD HISTORY

farm01Before the developers, before the tourists, before The bridges, Hilton Head Island was a much different place. A much simpler place.

Following the Civil War, Union troops left newly freed slaves behind to fend for themselves. As property became available, many freedmen used their hard-earned money to purchase land in areas such as Baynard, Squire Pope and Chaplin.

Roots were planted.

Families such as Aiken, Brown, Campbell, Grant, and King raised generation after generation off the land. Vine-ripened tomatoes, butterbeans,Vidalia onions, sweet potatoes, squash and more were grown in small fields, next to coops of chickens, pens of pigs and pastures of cows.

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The Feed

A heaping helping of the latest news in area restaurants.

PINO GELATO GOURMET CAFE OPENS IN BLUFFTON

pinogelatocaffeA new European-style coffeehouse has opened in Bluffton. Located in Bridge Center, Pino Gelato Gourmet Café prides itself on fresh, high-end coffee drinks, desserts, chocolates, sandwiches, flatbreads and more. The coffee is fresh-roasted by Charleston microroaster Island Coffee each week.

“Our coffee is the best in the area,” co-owner Krisztian Lonyai said. “(Island Coffee) imports beans from Coasta Rica and Columbia, they roast them on Tuesday and they get here on Wednesday. That’s the main reason why our coffee is so good and fresh.” Chocolates are provided by DeBrand Fine

Chocolates, a company that has twice been listed among “Oprah’s Favorite Things” in O, The Oprah Magazine. Desserts are from a small pastry shop outside of Charlotte. Hours are 8 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 8 a.m.-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday and noon-8 p.m. on Sunday. For more information, call 843-837-2633.

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Cool treats

YOUR GUIDE TOFROZEN TREATS. GET THE SCOOP ON ICE CREAM, FROZEN YOGURT, GELATO & SMOOTHIES.

icecream2Clearly summer vacation is coming to an end, but the arrival of fall traditions like school, dance classes, and football don’t necessarily usher out the still quite warm weather here in the Lowcountry. The need for cool treats will still be going strong for at least three more months. Honestly, does the cool treat season ever really end around here? Do you stop craving ice cream, frozen yogurt, gelato and smoothies when you store away your white jeans and flip flops? Nah, we don’t either.

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Every Dog Has Its Day: In the brewery with River Dog Brewing Co.'s James Brown

riverdogHere is what I know. It is difficult to interview a brewer, in a brewery, while standing up, trying to take notes and sip beer simultaneously. I managed awkwardly. Thus, I thought it only apropos that while I sit and type, I keep a beer nearby, just to keep the story consistent. You’ll thank me at the end.

Consistency is actually the key when you launch a brewery and basically overnight transition your home brewing hobby into your lifelong dream and new career. Enter James Brown. He’s doing just that and he feels good … like he knew that he would (enter brass accompaniment).

On this day, I am standing with Brown in River Dog Brewery’s enormous new space in Okatie. Workmen are spread about like oompah loompahs. office space is being framed out. Tasting room design is underway. Kegs are stacked in a corner creating perhaps the greatest beer can pyramid ever known to man. We’re standing in the ominous shadows of the enormous stainless steel fermenting vessels that will very soon be home to River Dog’s new brews. The excitement is palpable. The River Dog team is waiting on one final piece of equipment before they can fully execute their first monster and master batch of brew. The “Brew House” is on a truck, en route cross-country, and Brown is simply waiting for the delivery call. He admits, “It will be like Christmas morning when it arrives. The Brew House is where spirits turn into nectar.”

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License to kale: Taste the Southern superfood

kalePopeye and his spinach need to make way for the new “Queen of Greens.”

Vitamin-rich kale has long been a staple of southern cuisine but is gaining world-wide popularity for one simple reason — it’s one of the healthiest foods you can eat.  While all unprocessed vegetables are good for your health, kale offers a few added benefits, protecting against several cancers while lowering cholesterol.

“It’s basically the closest relative to wild cabbage,” said Lindsay Martin, a wellness coach and dietician at Hilton Head Health. “It’s considered one of those cruciferous vegetables, which have been shown to have numerous health benefits.”

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"Hot" Dog Days of Summer

By Sally Kerr-Dfood-sally-hotdogs004ineen

I grew up in the north – Poughkeepsie, N.Y., to be exact. So summer and grilling had a very short seasonal window, unlike here in the Lowcountry.  Up in the frozen north, we couldn’t wait for that first backyard barbecue when we pulled out the dusty old grill from the garage.  Now, my grill gets fired up pretty much all year round — I even use it to roast my Thanksgiving and Christmas turkeys (hey, it frees up the oven). 

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The Vibe: The classic peanut butter and barbecue

bbq_chick_ques

The culinary creation you see above is called the “P-Nutty BBQ Chicken Quesadilla,” and it is 8-year-old Hilton Head Island girl Mallory Russell’s entry in the “Jif Most Creative Peanut Butter Sandwich Contest.” While barbecued chicken may seem an odd substitute for, say, jelly, the people at Jif must have been impressed, as Russell has been named one of 10 finalists nationwide who will compete to win $10,000 toward educational products.

UPDATE: She won. Click here to read all the details.

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Business spotlight: Inside the Oilerie

oilerieIt’s too bad there’s not a scratch-n’-sniff card attached to this article. Walking into The Oilerie is like launching a lovely assault on your olfactory nerves; the smell of olives, mixed with the scent of aged balsamic vinegars, is simply enticing. If you closed your eyes, you might think that you’d just strolled into a little gourmet shop in Italy.

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Cheeseburgers in paradise: Dig into Hilton Head's best burgers

bestburgers_0811After accepting the difficult assignment to locate Hilton Head Island’s best burgers, I did two things right away: bought a new pair of running shoes, and renewed my gym membership.

With that important preliminary work out of the way, I proceeded to ask everyone I knew where I might track down the island’s best burgers, and I got a meaty response: 14 in total. That meant I had a lot of burgers to eat and not a lot of time to do it.

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