For the longest time I had been hearing that the city to visit for superior oysters was Charleston. With that in mind my bride and I saddled up our trusty steed (actually a PT Cruiser) and set off on a road trip.
One of the recommended oyster bars was the Noisy Oyster at 24 Market Street. We wandered about for awhile listening for the sounds of noisy oysters. Finally we heard their calls and arrived at their door step. We were promptly guided to an open air booth overlooking a busy thoroughfare.
Let me just cut to the chase here and say that the absolute highlight of our visit was Shealy, our cheerful, helpful, and effervescent server. The food choices were geared more to the tourist crowd, not to people looking for a memorable dining experience.
While placing our orders for adult beverages, Shealy gave us a real tour guide rundown on what to do and where to go while in Charleston. Did I mention that she is a real treasure?
We sipped our suds and decided on our choices for lunch. The Raw Bar Trio with steamed shrimp, oysters on the half shell, and seared tuna called my name.
This was an interesting though uninspired dish. What was disappointing is the recurring practice of not cutting the oysters loose from the bottom shell forcing the diner to pry the mollusks loose with a cocktail fork. This is the second Charleston "oyster bar" that did this. Shealy said that's what they do. Oh well!
The Belle of Ballast Point fared better with a chopped salad accompanied by a superb Parmesan crisp and a delicious side of fried green tomatoes floating on a bed of creamy grits.
That tomato dish was enhanced with a light, but toasty breading and a delightful lemony after taste. Now that was memorable!
Our total for food and beverages came to a reasonable $61.02. We tacked on an additional 20% + for Shealy's exceptional service.
I am glad that we went, but I do not envision a return.