February 21, 2018 § Leave a comment
Tabbuli and TOAST! Make The City Paper’s Best of Nominations
This year’s annual round up of Charleston’s best restaurants includes TOAST! for Best Breakfast and Best Bloody Mary. Meanwhile, downtown sister restaurant Tabbuli takes home a nomination for Best Tapas.
Voting continues through this Friday, February 23. Tabbuli and TOAST! fans are encouraged to visit the link below to cast your votes. Thank you for your enthusiastic patronage.
February 19, 2018 § Leave a comment
CHG VIP $250 Ticket Winner/Guest Carmela Gordon Describes Lowcountry Oyster Festival Fun
On a rainy Sunday, January 28, Carmela Gordon and her boyfriend enjoyed an afternoon of oysters, food, libations and fun at the Charleston Hospitality Group’s VIP tent at the Lowcountry Oyster Festival. The 47 year-old accounting professor at Trident Technical College was “very excited” when she heard she won out of a field of almost 600 social media submissions.
A Lowcountry native, it was her first visit to the Lowcountry Oyster Festival since age 11, and the very first festival shared with her boyfriend. “We both love oysters. The CHG buffet food was awesome. We especially loved the shrimp and grits from TOAST, the shrimp from Cove Oyster Bar & Grille, and the chicken and sweet potato waffles from Eli’s Table,” says Gordon.
Gordon and her family of 3 children and 3 grandchildren returned to Charleston in 2013 because she loves the festivals, food and people here. “I wanted the kids to grow up in Charleston. We plan on returning to the Lowcountry Oyster Festival next year.”
February 16, 2018 § Leave a comment
The fourth edition of CHG’s monthly newspaper, DIGEST, is now available online as well as on stands at each of our stores, many hotels, medical facilities, health spas, realtor offices, and beauty salons around greater Charleston.
Published on the second Friday of every month, written by award-winning food writer and trained chef Holly Herrick, and designed by CHG’s talented art director Vince Tedeschi, it features stories on CHG employees and news, recipes, regular columns, and food and general events around Charleston.
If you have any questions about the newspaper, want to present story ideas, or are interested in advertising, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
February 13, 2018 § Leave a comment
The shells from this huge event do much good for South Carolina’s environment, thanks to the hard work of the Coastal Conservation Society of South Carolina. That’s one of the reasons Charleston Hospitality Group loves to participate as a sponsor every year for the popular Lowcountry Oyster Roast. From The State:
Charleston, SC – Heralded as one of the top 20 events in the Southeast as well as the world’s largest oyster roast, the annual Lowcountry Oyster Festival at Boone Hall Plantation in Mt. Pleasant is a celebration of all things oysters. Nearly 80,000 pounds of the bivalves are steamed or roasted in one day for the large crowds of people gathered to consume them. Since 2008, Coastal Conservation Association South Carolina (CCA SC) has organized a group of volunteers to collect and recycle the empty shells for the building of new oyster reefs in the estuaries of the Palmetto State.
“This has been an amazing effort to be a part of,” said Gary Keisler, CCA SC Topwater Action Campaign chairman and organizer of the volunteers. “Looking back on where we started from, to see all the volunteers we now have participating is simply inspiring. Even the attendees now participate in the process and the level of cooperation between the Restaurant Association, CCA SC, and the SCDNR has grown so much that we now expect to recycle as close to 100 percent of the shells as we can get.”
When the group first began working with the Charleston Restaurant Association staff and the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources, the effort seemed daunting. Started in 2008 with an intrepid group of a half dozen volunteers, the effort has grown to 155 shell collectors in 2017 as well as 70 volunteers from the Culinary Institute at Trident Tech in Charleston and students from MUSC helping for the first time in 2018. Now, a large percentage of the task of the day focuses on educating event attendees on what they, the “oyster recovery team” volunteers, are doing and why.
“We were totally filthy at the end of the day those first few years,” said Keisler. “Between picking up shells left on the ground and shifting through the shells to remove the trash, it was dirty work. Now, people see the benefit of why we are doing it and help us out a lot more. We simply see it as a celebration with a purpose.”
Over the 10 years that CCA SC has been participating, more than half a million pounds of shells, about 10,755 bushels, have been collected at this one event. In that same time frame, CCA SC has invested more than $80,000 in equipment and donated it to SCDNR to establish and maintain a fleet of tools and vehicles specifically for oyster recycling and deployment. The recreational angling group truly recognizes oyster recycling and oyster reef restoration as a cornerstone of its expanding list of habitat work to benefit both South Carolina’s marine resources as well as Palmetto State anglers.
“This event is really a fantastic opportunity for us to acquire a lot of reef material in one location on one day,” said Scott Whitaker, CCA SC executive director. “And it all gets put right back into our creeks and tidal marshes to facilitate the growth of new oyster reefs which in turn contributes to cleaner water, creates juvenile fish habitat, and provides erosion control. It really is a wonderful conservation story and a tradition we think goes hand-in-hand with cool, crisp, lowcountry weather and steaming hot oysters.”
February 13, 2018 § Leave a comment
Jarod “Tubby” Smith
Brand and Kitchen Manager for Toast
Working in Toast kitchens for a total of 2 1/2 years, Jarod is an exceptionally enthusiastic brand manager and in talking to him, it becomes clear that’s because he loves his brand. “I love working for CHG and in food and beverage because I like the feeling of never knowing what the next day will bring. I started in F & B when I was 15 and now I’m 27 and I wouldn’t change a thing,” says Smith. “We have 11 restaurants and 4 or 5 different brands. It’s an amazing amount of diversity. On any given day I could be working on something at Toast, then get called into Eli’s Kitchen and maybe even work a catering event. You really have to work for your money and I like that.”
Born in CA, Smith moved to Charleston as a very young child, and has called Charleston home ever since. Though he attended The Culinary Institute of Charleston for a year, he became impatient for hands on kitchen knowledge. “I understand the need for certification, but really needed to get in there and get cooking. When I’m training people myself, I always say that formal training is great, but there is nothing like being in the kitchen, actually doing it.”
As far as his favorite foods, Jarod (affectionately nicknamed “Tubby” by CHG CEO Sam Mustafa), he loves Cajun, Creole, spicy, sushi, Asian. I like not just eating the food, but seeing the show, seeing the chefs in action. Not surprisingly, when he’s not working (which he jokes is almost never), he enjoys cars, entertainment, gambling, new places, new things – on the go kind of affairs. And, he loves Charleston. “It’s the only place I really knew growing up. I’ve traveled to FL, WY, CA, New Orleans, all over. But, it’s the people here that always bring me back. Charlestonian’s are very generous in character.”
February 12, 2018 § Leave a comment
Romantic Fondue Recipe from Eli’s Table
Fondue, which plays on the French word for “to melt” or “melting” originated in Switzerland, but is also a very popular dish in France and around the world. Typically, the base of a savory, cheese fondue is prepared with raclette (a semi-hard cow’s milk Swiss cheese) and other easy melting cheeses like cheddar and fontina, and gently melted with wine and other seasonings bound with a bit of cornstarch.
Eli’s Table’s fondue is prepared with Gouda cheese, a mild, nutty, yellow cow’s milk from Gouda, the Netherlands. Cheese fondue is often served from small pots on cubes of hard, country bread skewers dipped into the pot until all of the goodness is gone. It makes for an incredibly romantic dining experience for two and is surprisingly simple to make. At Eli’s Table, the warm fondue is served with sliced smoked sausage, sliced Granny Smith apples, grapes and pretzel bites for dipping. Bon appetit!
Eli’s Table Smoked Gouda Fondue
(Yields about 2 cups, or 2 to 4 servings)
1 cup good quality dry white wine
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 cup grated, smoked Gouda cheese
1/2 cup grated, Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 pinch ground nutmeg
1 pinch cayenne pepper
Combine wine, lemon juice and cornstarch in a medium pot over high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low. Add Gouda and Parmesan cheese slowly, whisking to combine and melt until smooth. Add onion powder, nutmeg and cayenne pepper. Stir to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. Serve warm from a traditional fondue pot or large ramekin on a platter with dipping garnishes arranged artfully around.
February 8, 2018 § Leave a comment
Summerville and West Ashley Toast Locations Set to Celebrate in Style
Toast! does not take romance lightly. At these cozy, all-breakfast, brunch and dinner, too restaurants, every day is intended to be Toast-worthy, but Valentine’s Day is extra special.
Toast of Summerville will feature a Valentine’s Adult Feature Surf and Turf Trio which includes the soup of the day or house salad, 8-ounce rib eye with crab cake drizzled with hollandaise sauce and a choice of two sides. And, a mimosa or sparkling refresher for $24.95 per person.
Across town, Toast of West Ashley will kick off what will become a regular Gal & Wine’s Day ladies night on the second Wednesday of every month from 4 p.m. to close. The inaugural event falls on Wednesday, February 14 and will feature live music from Chaquis Maliq’s one-woman band. Half price wines and special drink pricing and hors d’oeuvres will also be on the menu.
About Toast! – Part of The Charleston Hospitality Group family of restaurant and entertainment venues, Toast! serves Southern comfort food. A multiple award- winning breakfast and Bloody Mary winner, Toast! is known for its gigantic, fresh made daily biscuits, shrimp and grits, family size portions, reasonable prices and friendly service. Toast of Summerville is located at 717 Old Trolley Road, Summerville, 29485. Phone: 843.900.4422. Toast of West Ashley is located at 2026 Savannah Highway, West Ashley, 29407. Phone: 843.556.0066. For more information or to make reservations, visit toastofcharleston.com