Clary’s Cafe is a good sized place on a street corner with outdoor tables as well as 2 rooms for dining inside. They even have a parking lot. They serve breakfast and lunch all day. It started as a drug store in the 1930’s and later added a soda shop and now is a traditional diner. It moved to its present location in the 1940s. Featured in the book and film version of the novel “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil”, it was transformed back into Clary’s drugstore. Today inside you’ll find brick walls, an old wood floor, faux marble tables, music in the background and a stained glass window of Savannah’s Bird Girl. A hostess greets you outside and directs you to the old pharmacy room that only has tables or the room with a counter that used to be the soda shop. It is pet-friendly. Service was efficient and really friendly and the food was good. Continue reading
Husk in Savannah is in the Landmark Historic District with Executive Chef Chris Hathcock using locally sourced products to showcase Southern cooking. The 1898 building is purported to be haunted and after being built as a home served as an Elks Lodge and a performing arts school until it was abandoned in 1985. In 2008 it was severly damaged in a fire. The Neighborhood Dining Group, parent company of the Husk brand (you’l find other Husks in Charleston, Nashville, Greenville, SC.) bought the 10,000 square foot building and its 3 stories of event space. It has a capacity of over 200 including a bar area room for 84. At the hostess stand is the list of area farms and ingredients they use and it’s the same at the other Husks. Executive Chef Sean Brock helped develop the concept and this one opened in Jan. 2018. I thought the Charleston one was much better. This one is too large. Continue reading
The Crystal Beer Parlor building was the “Gerken Family Grocery Store” in the early 1900’s, with the owners living above it. It sold in the early 1930’s and was one of the first American eating establishments to serve alcohol after the repeal of Prohibition. Rumor was that they had been selling illegal liquor as a speakeasy during Prohibition. The walls were covered with scenes from Savannah’s past and portraits of people. In one room were blown up copies of the original menus. It’s a fairly large place in a wedge building on a ‘corner’ with a huge tented area in the back, where parking used to be. Inside is a counter room with stools and some booth seating and other rooms are a mix of tables and booths. Service was prompt, efficient and friendly. They are known for their burgers and housemade onion rings.
The Grey is a restaurant in a 1938 art deco Greyhound Bus Terminal. It was painstakingly restored to its original luster before opening in 2014 in historic downtown Savannah by Partner John Morisano. He recruited Chef and Partner Mashama Bailey who was named the 2019 James Beard Foundation’s best chef in the southeast, to join him. As you enter there is a small bar with a different menu and then you pass the kitchen, located in the old ticket booth, before you find the dining room. Within this room, filled with booths and tables is a large C-shaped bar. Numbers on the wall represent former boarding gates, with #3 leading to outdoor tents set up during Covid. In the dining room you’ll find a high ceiling, bench seating around the walls, small tables with white tablecloths, music in the background, lowered lights with a neon display at the top of the ceiling and the echo-y feel of a bus station. The menu is a 3 course dinner which you pick from 4 choices in each category. Some raw oysters and a few snacks, as well as dessert, are available if you want more. It’s great – check it out. Continue reading
Mrs. Wilkes Dining Room is at 107 West Jones Street and based on a boardinghouse concept of 2 hearty meals a day. In 1943 Sema Wilkes decided to make her living offering lodging and homestyle Southern cooking served family-style downstairs. A line begins forming before the 11:00 opening to get seats at one of the tables for 10 inside the dining room. The menu changes but there are staples that seem to regularly appear. It is $30 per person, cash only and that includes tax, drink and dessert. You pay as you leave and there is a jar if you want to add a tip. When you enter the table is set with about 20 different dishes of food and they suggest a direction for passing around. If one dish goes empty they will quickly bring more. Beverages included tea, sweet and unsweet, and water. It was a delightful meal filled with wonderful, fresh flavors and fun conversations. You should go if you can. Continue reading
The Olde Pink House dates back to 1771 (Habersham House) where the soft native brick bled trhough the plastered walls to change the color from white to pink. It housed the Habershams till the 1800s when it became the Planter’s Bank, with the old money vaults now serving as wine cellars. It was added on to at that time and later occupied by the military during the Civil War. After that it was used as a bookstore, colonial tea room and offices while suffering decay and neglect. In 1970 it underwent a one year structural restoration and the restaurant opened in 1971. In 1992 it changed hands and had more refurbishing. A fire in 2018 damaged the upstairs ballroom and it closed for 4 months for repairs. On the lower level is a tavern restaurant serving food in a more casual setting. It was fun to see but the food was over-rated and mostly fried. Continue reading
Leopold’s Ice Cream was founded in 1919 by three brothers from Greece, with one of their sons taking over after his father’s passing. He later went on to pursue his dream of working in Hollywood and memorabilia of his 50 years in the industry decorate the shop today. Other members of the family continued the business and the flagship store re-opened in 2004. You can find their product being served at restaurants around the city and at the airport. All of their super-premium ice cream is hand crafted using the original, secret recipes handed down by the 3 brothers. Walking by the store there was always a line to get in. Once inside there were movie posters and old family photos covering the walls. Several ‘scoopers’ were waiting to take your order. The ice cream was very smooth and dense. They served ice cream in sundae, cup or cone form along with a variety of drinks. Continue reading