Good evening! I was looking through my iPhone and saw a few photographs of a dinner I had earlier this year at Amen Street Fish & Raw Bar in downtown Charleston. I went there with le boyfriend (shocker) using a few gift certificates from my work.
To start, as it was a celebratory weekend, I had a dirty vodka martini. It was a decent dirty martini, strong, ice cold, and salty.
Next, it was on to a few appetizers. We split the fried green tomatoes and the fried calamari. The fried green tomatoes were, of course, fried and served alongside some pickled okra and shrimp salad. Traditionally there is some sort of remoulade or creamy-mayonnaise-y sauce served alongside the crispy, acidic tomatoes. The shrimp salad, on its own, was great. However, I personally believe it distracted from the main event: the tomatoes. The calamari, was phenomenal. So good in fact that there really are no words! Crispy, tender and not chewy, the calamari was perfectly fried. Served with a corn salad and an incredible lemony aioli the dish was balanced and had me craving more. (In fact, over mother’s day weekend I ordered it again– and it was just as delicious as I remembered!
Our salads appeared next. I ordered the berries salad– mixed greens with raspberries, strawberries, candied pecans and brie tossed in a light and slightly acidic vinaigrette. Boyfriend had the mixed greens salad with julienned vegetables, spiced pecans and another great vinaigrette. Mine was definitely better, but they were both good.
Our entrées were the two disappointments, unfortunately. I ordered the flash in the pan pirlau. I chose this dish because it featured local everything. If you’re a seafood and raw bar there should never be any grit in your finished product. It’s difficult to overcome grit grinding against your teeth. Boyfriend ordered the fried seafood platter. While it was good, can you really screw up fried seafood? For $19.95 the amount of food served was not at all a deal. I suppose if you’re eating at Amen Street you should not be expecting a bargain.
In conclusion, you won’t be disappointed if you go to Amen Street, you’ll definitely find some pleasant surprises. A word to the wise, ask the servers what’s best that day. Every single dish that was a suggestion by our waiter was a home run. The same held true for our mother’s day outing as well.