Gwen Fowler



Try Plums or Saltus River Grill in Beaufort for terrific Lowcountry dishes

Posted 11/11/2011 3:40:00 AM

Two restaurants you would enjoy trying on your next visit to the Beaufort area are Saltus River Grill and Plums.
Both are owned by the same company, Plums Inc., and both have beautiful views of the Beaufort River. They are about a block apart on Bay Street. You can be sure you’ll get lots of local foods because they are both Certified South Carolina Grown and both partners in the state’s Sustainable Seafood Initiative.
I had the chance to eat at both during a trip to Beaufort several weeks ago.

Saltus is sophisticated but casual. An outdoor patio, with strands of white lights at night, is a beautiful spot to dine during nice weather.

Chef Brian Waters, a Beaufort native, offers some interesting food combinations. For example, I had a caramelized sea scallop and pulled pork shoulder dish. The dish started with a serving of collards, topped by the pork. Two cornmeal hoe cakes sat on top of the pork, and the beautiful, delicious scallops crowned the dish. Another unexpected twist is that shelled, spicy boiled peanuts surrounded the dish.
My husband had bison short rib, served over pasta with a mushroom cream sauce. This was a hearty and tasty meal.

We also shared a smoked chicken liver pate, served Dijon mustard and brioche toast.

Saltus also has a sushi and raw bar where oysters and local shrimp are served.

Plums is a bit more casual and appears to be a favorite gathering spot for Beaufort folks. There are some dining spaces on the porch, and live entertainment is scheduled many Friday and Saturday nights.

A new chef, Joshua Castillo, took over the kitchen there earlier this fall. So many dishes on this menu sound amazing that it was tough to decide. I chose crab-stuffed flounder, served with shoestring yellow squash. It was wonderful, but I’d also love to try one of the specialty salads – candied pecan and Roquefort, sesame-seared tuna, as well as Caesar, Greek, spinach and Cobb.

The pasta dishes also sound scrumptious: chicken in a cayenne cream sauce; and shrimp, mussels and chorizo sausage over orzo.

Beaufort is a beautiful Lowcountry town perfect for a long weekend stay. Try Saltus River Grill and Plums while you’re there.