Thanks to all the chowhounds who provided comments on Hilton Head and Savannah. SO and I visited Hilton Head last week. Stayed in the Sea Pines area at the south end of the island. Took the ferry trip to Savannah - that was excellent except the A/C on the boat wasn’t really up to it. Here are our restaurant comments.
Hudsons - great hush puppies, nice view of the sunset. Sadly, a dozen oysters on the half shell had been shucked a good while before they were served and were quite dried out.
Wreck of the Salty Dog - best value! Happy hour (4-7pm) - 1/2 lb of shrimp for $4, with 2 beers still came to less than $9. Some of the best shrimp I have ever had (served cold on ice).
Sea Shack - I’m sure the food is great, but when we got there (6:30pm weekday) there was a long line, line was right next to people were eating at tables on the sidewalk, and the food was served on plastic plates. A nice lady said it was really worth the wait, but not for us.
Crazy Crab (@ Harbor Town) - Roasted oysters were a new experience for me. Everyone who likes shellfish should try this once and make up your own mind. Creamy she-crab soup. Hmm - wasn’t expecting that, my MD roots were always tomato based, but it was good. Blackened mahi mahi was excellent, vegetables were so so.
Vic's on the River - http://www.vicsontheriver.com/ (Savannah) - truly outstanding lunch. The fried green tomatoes were out of this world. Not exactly traditional, they had a substantial (cornmeal?) crust and were served with goat cheese and delicious tomato relish. Pulled pork was great, as was Meatloaf. True southern biscuits were some of the best I have had.
Hilton Head Brewery - great microbrews, so so meals. Loud sports bar inside.
Kenny B’s - we had breakfast there; shrimp & grits were excellent, as was french toast. Lack of milk for coffee (creamer only) was a minus. Would try it for dinner.
Hilton Head Diner - really good diner ambience & décor, but food not up to par. Coffee came when our breakfast did (!). Omelet and scrapple & eggs were both barely warm when they arrived. Little bowl of grits had a crust and was similarly barely warm.
Spartinas Southern Kitchen - southern buffet was serviceable, good selection, reasonable price. Crab cake off the a la carte menu was awful industrial-strength heavily breaded hockey puck. Very good biscuit, but the cornbread was sweet and flour-y. C’mon, this is not New England, it’s South Carolina for Pete’s sake!
Market St. Café - well, we had the “traditional” pizza, not the “Greek” pizza at this Greek restaurant, so this may be unfair, but it was the kind of pre-made crust that you buy at the supermarket, and it was underdone. Maybe they do better on the Greek cuisine.
Charlie’s L’Etoile Verte - best meal of the week. Probably best on the island. Lump crab and avocado remoulade was outstanding. Generous portion of true backfin lumps, ripe avocado fan. I ate the lettuce garnish to get the last of the remoulade. Nice pesto salade caprese, real tomatoes, freshly made pesto. Grilled snapper with wild mushroom sauce was perfect; as was blackened mahi mahi “K Pauls”. Scalloped potatoes and vegetable medley were both made perfectly. Proper haricots verts as not often seen this side of the pond. Plates were piping hot (the room was a little chilly; we warmed our hands over the plates). Excellent selection of half-bottles. “Sailor” trifle was rum-soaked cake layered with blackberries and whipped cream. Truly excellent decaf coffee. Highly recommended for a special occasion. Reasonably priced for the food and ambience delivered.