Island Vibes Feb 2024

palms. Muscle relaxer. Dark ‘n’ stormy. Ankle breaker. Bounty 17 FOOD & BEV Restaurant Review Wild Dunes offers a smorgasbord of dining options By Maurice J. Frazier Behind the Bar Pam, the pride of Smugglers By Maurice J. Frazier ild Dunes Resort is not only the perfect place for a true staycation experience, but they offer a wide variety of restaurants to enjoy as well. With 12 eateries from which to choose, there is something for every palette. You can literally visit a different restaurant for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert and cocktails. Coastal Provisions, which specializes in locally-sourced meats and sustainable seafood, as well as seasonal vegetables sourced from local and regional purveyors, serves breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert. Hudson’s Market & Cafe, established in 2008 and located in the heart of the village lodging area of the resort, is the go-to spot for all market and café goodies. From grab-and-go wraps to fresh fruits and Lowcountry treats, Hudson’s Market has you covered. Woody’s Eatery is a casual and laid-back spot serving up breakfast favorites all day and lunch. From the Brawley breakfast sandwich (scrambled eggs, cheddar W cheese, bacon, tomato, Duke’s Mayo, Texas toast) to the Woody’s Burger, it’s a great spot for breakfast and lunch any day of the week. Wild Dunes is paradise so why not try the Caribbean-infused cuisine of Laughing Gull Restaurant & Bar? This poolside restaurant offers all the perks including big screen TVs. Feeling thirsty? Try one of their signature cocktails like the Tipsy Turtle, featuring RumHaven Coconut Rum, or the Pukalani Punch featuring Appleton Rum and RumHaven Coconut Rum. Once you’re done with the pool, head to the beach to enjoy the sea breeze and relax to the soothing sound of waves crashing onto the shore. If you work up an appetite, the seasonal Beachside Burgers & Bar is located at the end of the boardwalk in the Grand Pavilion. If you are visiting Wild Dunes to play golf, then stop by Huey’s on the Links Course, a casual lunch and small bite lounge menu. Once you’re in the restaurant, you can indulge in a side of Isle of Palms history as well. Are you ready for Tequila? Tacos & Tequila is a vintage airstream food truck located on the Sweetgrass Plaza. This seasonal eatery is available to guests and visitors and will be opening soon once the heat and humidity returns. Also on the Sweetgrass Plaza is an Italian restaurant the entire family will enjoy. Serving up pizzas with toppings such as shrimp scampi, BBQ chicken, fig and prosciutto, Coastal Crust will have you craving more. They don’t just serve pizza; their traditional Italian menu offers the classics as well. Charleston is known for many things: historic plantations, golf, tennis, the beaches, sweetgrass baskets and, of course, oysters. Oystercatcher Restaurant & Bar is a comfortable lobby bar with a patio serving up tasty, globally-inspired small and shareable plates. Every Thursday between 3-4 p.m. the restaurant features Shuck and Savor, which provides the opportunity to explore the rich history, regional influences and unique flavors of oysters through a curated platter of four distinct varieties. This is also one of the few restaurants offering a late-night menu after 10 p.m. Wild Dunes isn’t just a place where you can play golf or tennis and relax at the spa. They have also made their culinary mark on the Isle of Palms. To make a reservation with any of these restaurants, visit Better yet, book an overnight stay and indulge. hunter. If you know these drink names, then you know Smugglers. Pam Speer has been bartending at Smugglers ever since it opened three years ago. A Georgia native, Speer has called the Lowcountry home since 1999. “Working here is fun. I love people watching,” Speer said. “The bar has a direct view of the sidewalk. So, especially during the summertime, it’s fascinating.” Speer loves interacting with her customers and the local community that patronize the bar. The most common topic Pam hears or is asked about, by tourists or visitors, concerns trying to buy a house somewhere here in Charleston. “People love Charleston, they love Isle of Palms and are wanting to purchase a home down here,” Speer said. She has witnessed the change in the community, not to mention all the new developments. The landscape of Isle of Palms has altered over the last 20 years and Speer embraces it. When it comes to hobbies, Speer enjoys yoga and Pilates. Staying healthy and living an active lifestyle are her prescripPhoto Provided. Photo Provided. tion for a bright future. That, combined with Speer’s passion for bartending and being around people. “I enjoy bartending because I listen to people,” Speer shared. “I love meeting new people and hearing their stories, their walks of life. Now, some stories I would never repeat. I’m like, ‘okay I’m still making my drink and I didn’t hear that.’” Some of Speer’s favorite drinks to make are mojitos and muscle relaxers. If you want to swing by and see her, she typically tends bar on Mondays and Tuesdays. “We are slowing down right now. SEWE will give us a little pop and then comes the spring breakers starting after that,” she stated. From Mother’s Day weekend to mid-October, Smugglers stays busy. So, if you want to see a bright, smiling face with a thorough knowledge of Charleston, who can concoct a veritable library of delectable libations, then visit Smugglers and order a drink from Speer! 1