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traveler04 Nov 27th, 2004 04:39 PM

Hilton Head restaurants for two adults
I'd like to get some relatives a gift certificate to dinner at a very nice restaurant in hilton head. They'll be in Sea Pines, but I'm assuming the island is relatively small where they could go anywhere on the island. Any recommendations? I'd like it to have great food, atmosphere and wine. Also, if you have any other suggestions for a great Hilton Head gift, I'd appreciate it.


reidsmom Nov 28th, 2004 06:00 AM

We spend a couple of weeks at HHI each summer. I'd recommend Red Fish. It's very close to the entrance of Sea Pines and has great food. It also has a wonderful selection of wine. They do have a website with their full menu.

cheapbutnice Nov 29th, 2004 11:44 AM

I've heard great things about the Red Fish also. Other Fodorites, please chime in. I have friends in HHI that love the Sunset Grill (??)-a restaurant in a upper-scale RV park with a tremendous chef. They claim that the view & food are great!

GoTravel Nov 29th, 2004 11:52 AM

I really like the British Open Pub.

Snowrooster visits every summer. Maybe she'll see the question and post some of her favorites.

linco711 Nov 29th, 2004 02:19 PM

We live on Hilton Head. Our favorite restaurant in Sea Pines is CQ.s. My favorites though are not in Sea Pines. One is the Boat House on the North End. It's right on the water. Another favorite is the Old Fort Pub, which is in Hilton Head Plantation and is right on the water, and was recently featured on TV food finds.....Enjoy!!

golf_guy Nov 30th, 2004 06:46 AM


Faves on HHI include already mentioned Redfish, Sea Grass Grille (near entrance to Palmetto Dunes - 3 miles from Sea Pines Circle), Michael Anthony's (New Orleans Road, 1/2 mile from Sea Pines Circle), and Fitzgerald's (also near the entrance to Palmetto Dunes).
For a nice dinner and entertainment, look to The Jazz Corner (Village of Wexford, 1/2 mile from Sea Pines Circle). On weekends they usually have a 'name' act which may require a cover charge, but during the week there is a regular series of excellent musicians playing jazz with no cover charge.

snowrooster Nov 30th, 2004 06:59 AM

Here I am!! I would recommend Redfish as well - we loved it!!! I've heard good things about Charlie's Le Etoile Verte and Sea Grass Grille but haven't tried them since they don't seem the best spot for us w/two little ones. We went to Neno's a couple of years ago and loved it but there was no kids's menu so haven't returned. The food is italian and fabulous, but it's in a strip mall so there are no views. If you want a great view I've heard Old Fort Pub is beautiful (I saw Rachel Ray there on Food Network as well), but I don't know much about the food.

FYI that Redfish is owned by the same group that owns Old Oyster Factory and Alexanders, so your relatives might be able to choose which restaurant they go to if you get one there (though Redfish is the nicest/most contemporary of the bunch, IMO).

Good luck!

traveler04 Nov 30th, 2004 07:16 AM

Thank you so much for your suggestions!! it's just making a decision between all of them :-) Thanks!

traveler04 Nov 30th, 2004 07:27 AM

Which of these places would you describe as most romantic, but not stuffy and has the best food?

traveler04 Nov 30th, 2004 07:35 AM

The Jazz Corner sounds like a fun place? How's the food? What's the atmosphere like? Is it really smokey?

Brian_in_Charlotte Nov 30th, 2004 09:47 AM

CQ's has everything you're looking for and is in Sea Pines. The island's not that small and traffic can be a real pain around dinner time in season.

snowrooster Nov 30th, 2004 10:16 AM

I've never been to CQ's but I wouldn't worry about choosing a place based on location. The island is pretty small and there is one main road that almost everything is off. I can't imagine it taking more than a few minutes to get anywhere, even in heavy traffic (and unless your relatives aren't going until the summer, it won't be high season). We go the week after high season ends and have never run into traffic except on Saturday when everyone arrives that afternoon!

flypet Nov 30th, 2004 10:30 AM

CQ's is very nice, and romantic as well. We also really like the Crazy Crab out on the highway. We go early or late and always get a window table. The longest part of the drive is going from our place at South Beach all the way across Sea Pines. Once out of Sea Pines we take the expressway.

snowrooster Nov 30th, 2004 10:36 AM

We go to Crazy Crab out on the highway as well. I've heard the one in Sea Pines referred to as a tourist trap, but we've always had great food at the one on the highway (though it's not particularly romantic). My kids love the big fish tank!!

golf_guy Dec 1st, 2004 06:44 AM


Sorry, I meant Alexander's, not Fitzgerald's. I sometimes get the names mixed up, but, please, don't ever confuse the two -- you don't want to go to Fitzgerald's.
The Jazz Corner is NO SMOKING, so there is no concern about it being smokey.
Yes, the food is very good. She Who Must Be Obeyed loves the crispy duck, and I've never had a bad meal there.
All things being equal, if the choice is between Crazy Crab on the north end or Old Oyster Factory, I think I'd opt for Old Oyster Factory. It sits on the water on Broad Creek. Great view, part of the Redfish group (meaning great food), and not hard to get to - 3 or 4 miles from Sea Pines Circle (I use that as a reference because it is at the front entrance of Sea Pines Plantation).
There are nearly 175 restaurants on Hilton Head, but I think there are only 6 really good ones. For fine dining, there are only 2 that I go to, Redfish and Sea Grass Grill. Jazz Corner is a different experience because of the entertainment.
Sea Grass used to be Charlie's Letoile Verte. Then Charlie (Golson) bought what used to be Charleston on New Orleans Road, near Sea Pines and moved his operation there. But his chef, Chad, and his 2 premier service people, Cathy and Terrell, decided they would like to have their own place, so they opened Sea Grass where Charlie's used to be. For anyone who's been to Charlie's over the past 15 years, Chad cooked for you and Cathy or Terrell (or the late Leah, may she Rest in Peace) served you. If you liked it, then Sea Grass is where you want to go.
Charlie's new place is nice, but Charlie didn't prepare my meals, Chad did. And Charlie didn't serve me, Cathy and Terrell did.
That's why I like Sea Grass.
That's probably more than you wanted to know. Sorry.

Brian_in_Charlotte Dec 1st, 2004 07:23 AM

No no, that's great golf guy. We'll put Sea Grass on our list for our visit in January. Thanks.

snowrooster Dec 1st, 2004 10:08 AM

golf_guy - Hoping you can offer some insight. I've wanted to try Charlies/Sea Grass for a couple of years but felt my kids were too little. We took them to Redfish in Sept and it & they were great (they have a wonderful children's menu). They will be ages 3 & 4 when we go next summer - think they would be okay for an early dinner? Is there a quiet stuffy atmosphere at Sea Grass Grille or is it more contemporary like Redfish? Thanks!

golf_guy Dec 2nd, 2004 06:27 AM


I don't think quiet/stuffy is a term that could be used for Sea Grass, or Charlie's, either. I'd say atmosphere at Sea Grass is a little more relaxed than Redfish, less formal, and I think that has to do with the personality of the owners.
But I'm not aware of kid's menus in either place. Doesn't mean there isn't, it's just that I've never seen one.
Sea Grass is 7 or 8 seafood choices, and 4 or 5 non-seafood (filet, rack of lamb, pork chop, veal).
Now that I think about it, I don't think I've ever seen kids in there.
I asked a few people in the office where they would take their kids and Kurama Japanese Restaurant, Hofbrauhaus, Aunt Chilada's, Marley's, and Hilton Head Brewing Co. were the top vote getters.
I can't vouch for any of them --- no kids and I've never been in any of them.
To go back to the original point, while I don't think your kids will have the time of their lives at Sea Grass, they certainly won't be made to feel unwelcome or unwanted.
I'd recommend you get a table in the area opposite the kitchen (open kitchen -- you can see almost everything in there). I think the kids would enjoy watching the comings and goings and watching Chad cook. I confess, I always enjoy it and ask to sit there half the time we go there. Not every time, because Terrell's tables are on the other end of the room.

traveler04 Dec 3rd, 2004 10:34 AM

thank you all for your suggestions, these are great. I think we'll go for Red Fish and, for some fun entertainment, the Jazz Corner. Does anyone else have any thoughts on Jazz Corner?

traveler04 Dec 3rd, 2004 10:37 AM

Is the quality of food at Red Fish and Sea Grass comparable? Is one better? Golf Guy, would you rather receive a gift certificate to Sea Grass or Red Fish? Why?

Look forward to hearing from you!

Many Thanks!!

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