I’m finally venturing out of Durham for this restaurant review on Flo’s Place Restaurant and Bar in Murrells Inlet, South Carolina. If you’re ever in Myrtle Beach or Pawley’s Island, I definitely recommend checking this place out.
A throwback to New Orleans and all things Mardi Gras, I consider Flo’s Place an eccentric and unique hidden gem in the middle of pretty much nowhere. Situated right alongside the marsh, Flo’s Place has both indoor and outdoor seating, all with a view of what a little imagination would call the South Carolinian bayou. That might be a stretch but Flo’s is a place where you can really have fun and let loose a bit.
The menu features a lot of exciting NOLA classics made with fresh and local seafood. From poboys of fried oysters, crab cakes, and fish, to gumbo, red beans and rice with sausage, and even shrimp creole, the menu was extensive to say the least. Our waiter was Mark, a really friendly guy who told us about that Flo’s was most famous for their shrimp balls, best enjoyed in a poboy. A few of my friends opted for that while I ordered the mahi mahi fish tacos.All of our food was excellent.
My two fish tacos had a generous grilled mahi filet on a bed of lettuce and tomato, remoulade sauce, as well as some cole slaw on the side. I am a sucker for fresh fish, especially when they’re presented in what I consider to be the most simplistic and perfect way to eat them; taco style. The problem I see with a lot of places and their fish tacos is that either the fish is fried, which can be done well, but usually isn’t, or the fillings don’t pair well with the fish themselves. Flo’s did it right. Their meaty fish was perfect on a bed of plain lettuce and tomato which was all brought together with the remoulade sauce. The freshness of the fish with the crisp lettuce and tang and sweetness from the tomatoes all married under the creamy red remoulade sauce that was slightly smoky. The cole slaw was a definite homage to a southern classic and I found theirs to be pretty good. Bigger pieces of cabbage and not too creamy with a sweetness that made the dish really well rounded; I was thoroughly impressed with this place! I devoured my first taco before I remembered I hadn’t taken a picture of it yet. I should really work on my food photo skills.
While I didn’t get to take a picture of my friends’ shrimp ball poboys, I did manage to get a bite and it did not disappoint. I don’t know exactly what the shrimp balls were but they tasted like a light and airy cornmeal hushpuppy with loads of roughly ground shrimp with a ton of flavor. They were friend perfectly, not too greasy and definitely fluffy. I would probably guess that the ratio of shrimp and batter is about 90-10, these things are definitely full of shrimp and that was probably the best part. Their poboys looked filling.
By the time we were all done, none of us wanted to leave. It was a combination of the awesome atmosphere (perfect weather for outdoor seating) along with the beautiful view of the marshlands, and of course, we were all stuffed from all of the generous portions. Although I’m not sure Pawley’s Island or Murrells Inlet is a common vacation destination or tourist spot, I’d have to say that Flo’s Place Restaurant and Bar is a definite must-see/must-eat establishment. Whether you’re driving through or staying for the long haul, make sure you check this place out for some great food and a really fun experience.
Recently checked out a relatively new restaurant in Durham, Harvest 18. It’s actually very close to Rise Biscuits and Donuts, the last place I wrote a review about. I’m always up for trying new things and eating at new places so I figured I’d give this place a shot.
Harvest 18 is a pretty cool farm to table restaurant that offers a daily menu that features Southern food made with really fresh ingredients. It’s always interesting to me when restaurants here in North Carolina self promote being “locally sourced” or “farm to table”. This state has some of the freshest and best produce around…shouldn’t restaurants automatically source locally?
Anyways, the overall layout of the restaurant was pretty nice. I was really impressed with the outdoor seating, which had a really classic Southern feel to it with lights hanging across beams, wooden tables, and metal chairs. All of the light posts were mounted in boxes with herbs like rosemary and mint which I thought was pretty cool. Even though the restaurant is in the middle of a shopping center with Target and Michaels, the outdoor seating was a nice implant of another world. I liked it.
The menu, which was dated to prove that they’re changed daily, had a lot of great choices. As an appetizer, we ordered the red pea hummus, which was pretty amazing. The hummus was garnished with some pickled vegetables so there was a nice contrast between tangy and creamy, crunchy and smooth, and salty and sweet. The whole wheat pita bread they used is also from one of my favorite places so that was a huge plus. (shoutout to Neomonde!)
I got the pan seared mahi mahi which was served with sautéed sweet potatoes and mustard greens all on top of some farro with a kind of balsamic sauce. You can never really go wrong with me with a dish like this. It was truly a simple but yet powerful dish; each element really spoke out on it’s own and was nicely balanced with each other. There was no heavy sauce or onslaught of herbs and spices which allows for the fresh components to be truly enjoyed. The most “complex” flavor on that plate was probably the balsamic…dressing? It was actually a pretty weird sauce that seemed a little out of balance with the rest of the dish BUT I do see why that it was meant to be a nice acidic contrast to everything else. Overall, the dish was pretty nicely done. I’ve always been a fan of fresh, local produce so I wasn’t surprised that I enjoyed my dish.
All in all, I really enjoyed my lunch experience at Harvest 18. I am definitely a fan of their concept and hope to go back for dinner one day.