Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Charleston - Day 2 (This is mainly about food. And there is nothing wrong with that.)

Our second day started with an entire morning spent in the spa. My number one requirement for our hotel was that it had a spa that offered maternity massages. I was so excited when I saw that they had a maternity massage table. I have gone to 4-5 different spas for maternity massages and none of them had a maternity table so I always had to have a massage laying on my side :(

After our pampering we walked a few blocks to go eat lunch at Sightly North of Broad (S.N.O.B.). It reminded us of a french bistro but with a southern twist. We started with the house salad each. For our entree I ordered the shrimp and grits - whenever this dish is mentioned it should have angels singing in the background. It was INCREDIBLE. Unfortunately, since the baby takes up so much room, I couldn't even finish it. Brian ordered the beef carpaccio which I didn't taste since I wasn't sure if I should eat anything raw. We asked our waiter what the most popular dish is and he said for lunch it was the shrimp and grits (angelic singing) and for dinner the BBQ tuna.

We shared a strawberry shortcake for dessert. I had to take a picture of it so I could re-live that dessert. The shortcake was actually cornbread with ice cream instead of whip cream. Since Brian is a die hard shortcake and whip cream fan it wasn't his favorite but he still managed to force over half the dessert down his throat.

We walked back to our hotel to grab our car and head to the Magnolia Plantation. I had planned on us visiting the Middleton Plantation but since our hotel room came with a free pass to Magnolia the plans were changed. The house itself wasn't very impressive but it was interesting to learn that the same family has owned it from the very beginning and only moved out in 1975. The current owner is over 90 and she still lives somewhere on the property.

The circular driveway has the required Spanish moss that all plantations should have.

After the Civil War the owners opened up their amazing gardens to the public. We wandered around the different garden areas and came across the Biblical garden. Under the Sycamore tree was a sleeping cat. If he was only in the tree we would have name him Zacchaeus.
My Uncle Jim and Aunt Vickie recommended that we eat at least one meal at Jestine's so that night we walked to the tiny little restaurant. We had driven by the restaurant a few times and each time we saw that there was a line that went out the door. We are thrilled to see that there was no line when we got there.

This was the little hole-in-the-wall place that we were looking for and it was wonderful! There were only 17 tables and all were occupied. The menu was small but since everything looked so good, who cared? The silverware came wrapped in a large wash cloth. That was a good hint at what was to come. As soon as we sat down they plopped a bowl of pickles on the table. I am a dill pickle purist and while these were not dill they weren't exactly sweet or bread and butter. I don't know what they were but I ate them. I ate a lot of them.

I ordered the table wine (sweet tea) and then we noticed that the line had just started to form outside the door and was starting to curve around the building. Yay for good luck! Pregnant Katie + 90*'s + standing in a line = unhappy Katie (and a tortured Brian).

We started with fried green tomatoes - I could have finished the meal then and left happy. If they only shipped to Albany we would have already placed three orders for overnight delivery. I then had the fried seafood dish - fried whiting, fried oysters, and fried shrimp. This came with a side of fried okra and macaroni and cheese. Fried with a side of fried. There was only a portion of me that was going to regret this meal.

Brian ordered fried chicken with fried okra and green beans. Since I didn't want to miss a bite of my meal I didn't even try his chicken. We had no room for dessert but we were told that the Coca Cola cake would have been the way to go. I actually started to tear up when they took my leftovers off the table. It was a very emotional moment for me.

Just one more small note on a late night dessert we ate at the jazz bar in our hotel. We split a chocolate ganache cake with popcorn flavored ice cream and salted caramel topping. There was no point to the ganache cake when you have POPCORN FLAVORED ICE CREAM.

And now I'm starving.

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