Gluten Free in Charleston, SC – Day 1

I cannot believe that I haven’t posted anything since December! Of course, I haven’t had much free time since December either. My hubby and I run a renovation/design business and we’ve been crazy busy…. which is awesome…. and crazy. Last month I noticed that we had four, whole unscheduled days in the calendar…. in – a – row!! I blocked them off and refused to let Brian schedule anything over them. We were taking a vacation… whether he liked it or not!

Charleston, SC is only five hours from where we live and I’ve heard my friend rave about the city forever. Brian and I’ve never been to Charleston so we decided that it would be a great place to spend a few days walking around, eating and spending quality time together.

Food, of course, being a top priority, we planned for the drive north to land us at Tybee Island’s Crab Shack right at lunch time.

Low Country Boil & Crab Legs

We’ve eaten at the Crab Shack twice before and loved it. There is a huge patio/deck area under these gorgeous trees. It’s beautiful…. and swampy and just fun.

Brian and I ordered the Low County Boil for one and added a pound of crab legs. We told our waitress that we were gluten free and asked her to help steer us away from anything that would make us sick. She didn’t seem super GF knowledgeable, but we’d eaten there twice before and we just ordered the same thing. She did mention that someone had told her that the sausage in the Boil might not be GF (so go check! Ugh!) but I don’t eat it anyway and Brian was willing to risk it. She rattled off the ingredients in the house-made cocktail sauce and included worcestershire sauce which is generally not gluten free. (There are some out there though, so it’s not necessarily not gf, but I wasn’t willing to risk it.).

By evening we’d made our way to Charleston and we were ready to do a little bit of exploring and hunt down more food.

The Find Me Gluten Free app had good-ish reviews for The Obstinate Daughter… and honestly, I just liked the name.

I called ahead to make sure they still had a gf menu and tried to make reservations, but they were already booked for the night. They suggested that we could eat at the bar or patio if we didn’t want to go on the waitlist. (So make reservations if you plan to go!)

The staff were all great, knowledgeable and polite, and the food was delish! There were some GF ‘small plate’ options, but honestly, I was already focused on the pasta dishes and don’t remember any of them.

Brian ordered the Cavatelli (fennel and sausage ragu, parmesan) and I ordered the Bavette (lobster, shrimp, tomato, onion, garlic, parsley, chili flake).

The person that brought our food to the table wasn’t our server, which always makes me nervous, but before I even had a chance to ask he named each dish as he sat it down and said that gluten free pasta had been substituted for the regular pasta.

After dinner we walked a few blocks to the beach to burn off all the delicious pasta that we’d just narffed. The beach was beautiful with its white sand dunes and tufts of sea oats, but I’m relieved to say that I like my beach at home better. (Brian was super relieved too because he doesn’t want to have to move again for a while!) I’ll admit that I am jealous that they seem to have sand dollars. I’ve collected a lot of sea shells and other bits from our home beach, but I still haven’t found a whole sand dollar. I found pieces of sand dollar on the Charleston beach, but still not a whole one.

After all that walking (haha) we went in search of dessert. I’d read reviews for Republic Ice Cream which was located just a few blocks back from the beach. I didn’t even take a picture, I was so disappointed with the whole place. Yes, the lady knew about celiac and she said that the ice cream was GF, but that the cross contamination from the cookies and cream (the ONLY non-gf ice cream) was super high. I might have taken the chance, (I mean, what are they doing? Throwing ice cream around the freezer?!) but I got the impression that she really didn’t want me to eat the ice cream. She kept suggesting the soft serve ‘to be safe.’ Brian ordered a soft serve (blech!) sundae and I just skipped the whole thing. I wasn’t wasting calories on soft serve.

Day one of vacation and half a ton of food consumed and already we feel a bit more rested and like ourselves. We have more adventures planned and more foods to sample tomorrow!

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