Sassy Southern Cooking with a French Twist

Upper King Street

Sunday, Savory Sunday (and Sweet, Too!)

Indaco Adds Sunday Brunch to Tasty “Dixie-talian” Menu

The burgeoning bunch of downtown Charleston restaurants serving brunch, especially on smokin’ hot Upper King Street, just got one restaurant bigger, and in my opinion, that much better. Indaco, popular for its sexy, sophisticated bar and dinner scene, added brunch to its menu line-up and kicked off last Sunday with a whopping 120 covers on the very first day.

The menu, co-created by Executive Chef Michael Perez and newly promoted Chef de Cuisine Andy McLeod, stays true to the restaurant’s self-described Dixie-talian roots, or as McLeod aptly describes it, “a broad use of local ingredients with an Italian spin.” Not surprisingly, the menu weaves a series of pizzas (both sweet and savory) from their celebrated wood-burning oven, egg sandwiches, pasta, and classic Italian “primi” courses such as an exquisite sounding Bombolini made with a Meyer lemon marmalata and lemon crema, smoked pork rilettes, and a prosciutto plate with Honey Crisp apples, honey and Parmesan cheese.

Here are some of my favorites:

Light and luscious, "Milk and Honey" showcases Indaco's impossibly creamy and smooth housemade whipped ricotta and crunchy granola with sweet, garden-fresh fruit. A bit of honey sweetens the deal to Sunday morning perfection.

Light and luscious, “Milk and Honey” showcases Indaco’s impossibly creamy and smooth housemade whipped ricotta and crunchy granola with sweet, garden-fresh fruit. A bit of honey sweetens the deal to Sunday morning perfection.

Nutella lovers will revel in the warm stuff drizzled over caramelized bananas and toasted nuts on Indaco's impeccable pizza crust.

Nutella lovers will revel in the warm stuff drizzled over caramelized bananas and toasted nuts on Indaco’s impeccable pizza crust.

Save room for the pasta, whatever you do. The Mezzaluna is a riff on shrimp and grits, with the tenderest housemade noodles prepared with corn/pasta flour, grouper sausage, and Shem Creek harvested shrimp swimming in a ham stock broth. Exquisite!

Save room for the pasta!The Mezzaluna is a riff on shrimp and grits, with the tenderest housemade noodles prepared with corn/pasta flour, grouper sausage, and Shem Creek harvested shrimp swimming in a ham stock broth. Exquisite!

While sophisticated, the space is also children-friendly, particularly the large, outdoor patio. Management anticipates adding live music to the entertainment mix in the coming weeks, once the brunch crowd has settled in. Bottomless Bellinis prepared with peach, a splash of pomegranate and Prosecco or a Mark it 8, Dude adult beverage featuring a blend of vodka, Borghetti, a cereal infused cream (last week it was cinnamon crunch!) and a pinch of cinnamon, will certainly suit Charleston’s vast apres church, libation-imbibing crowd.

Reservations recommended.

Indaco

526 King Street, downtown Charleston, 29403

843-727-1228

indacocharleston.com

Sunday brunch hours – 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.

 

 

 

 

 

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Sweet Street Newly “Glazed”

First there was Cupcake, then there was Macaroon (now with a second location). With the recent and closely timed openings of P.I.E. and Glazed Gourmet Doughnuts (both within a chocolate quarter’s throw from one another), Upper King Street just got even sweeter.

It’s a nifty and whimsical trend that’s well-suited to the eclectic crowd – from farmers’ market denizens to COC students, families and business types – that flock to this hip part of town for food, art, and drink.  For Pastry Chef Allison Smith, who opened Glazed back in early October, it’s all for the love of pastry, especially doughnuts. A 9- year veteran of the F & B business, the Culinary Institute of Charleston grad left her most recent post at Anson to dedicate herself entirely to her funky, fun and delightfully delicious new doughnut shop. For Smith, the time to make the doughnuts is 3 a.m. on weekdays when she joins her staff of two bakers to crank out a daily array of at least 8 – 10 rotating doughnut flavors.

Doughnut Lover's Glaze Over with Choices at Glazed

 

Smith has two core recipes for the doughnuts: cake and yeast. While the cake doughnut is crumbly, tender on the inside, and crunchy on the outside, it’s the yeast doughnuts (almost exclusively the “glazed” variety) that truly shine, in more ways than one. She tweaked her recipe over the years, comparing and contrasting it with “tons” of others she encountered to come up with her own. The results are airy and irresistible. It’s the kind of doughnut that slightly resists with sweet crunch as you sink your teeth into it, then slowly implodes and melts into its delicious self, until it’s all gone, leaving a lingering happy memory in its admittedly fattening wake.

Glazed cranks out at least 8 to 10 doughnut flavors daily. Glazed fans can count on at least 7 doughnut regulars daily: raspberry glazed, berry-filled, cream-filled, “some kind of chocolate,” and two “seasonal” doughnuts. Right now, the seasonal choices include Ginger Cranberry and The Sweet Potato topped with a brown butter glaze and pecans, that is until Smith comes up with something new.

Mexican Chocolate and Raspberry Glazed Doughnuts on display at Glazed.

 

As far as coming up with her exceptionally creative and balanced flavor inspirations ( a huge part of the fun for both her and her customers), Smith just rolls with “whatever combinations I like to eat.” For example, yesterday, it was a banana pudding doughnut based upon the “most amazing banana pudding,” she says. Other days, it’s been as inventive and delicious as Strawberry Lime Basil, Salted Caramel Apple and The Purple Goat filled with berry goat cheese and a lavender glaze. It’s pairings such as these that give some of Glazed doughnuts an almost savory edge; a kind of true “cook’s” doughnut not unlike the many delicious mixed drinks being muddled and concocted at nearby bars and restaurants such as The Cocktail Club and The Belmont.  At the latter, the drinks seem more like a layered, complex meal to be savored, while the former definitely are a testament to Smith’s ability to think and bake her way well-outside of the mundane doughnut box.

While a little pricey at almost $2 a pop, Glaze offers a worthwhile indulgence for any bona fide doughnut lover. There is coffee, too, and the always welcome service with a smile.

Glazed Gourmet Doughnuts

481 King Street, Charleston

(843) 577-5557

www.glazedgourmet.com

Mon.-Fri., 7 a.m.-3 p.m., Sat., 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Sun., 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

 

 

 

 

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