Other Stellar Plates and Pours
Critics from around the nation sound off on some of their favorite "Award of Unique Distinction" eateries
The Dining Room at Woodlands; Summerville, South Carolina
Whether staying at the renowned resort or venturing out from Charleston, an evening at The Dining Room at Woodlands is one of the souths most sublime food and wine experiences. The airy setting of The Dining Room reminds one of an English country home (all of Woodlands does). The cuisine is cosmopolitan, but based on fresh local ingredients and lowcountry influences. Menus change daily and diners can choose from a four-course a la carte menu or an equally delectable five-course tasting menu crafted by hot new Woodlands chef Tarver King, with the option to include the wine pairings of sommelier extraordinaire Stephane Peltier. 125 Parsons Road, Summerville, South Carolina. 843-308-2115. www.thewoodlands.com.
Sanderling Resort; Duck, North Carolina
A stay at The Sanderling Resort & Spa (or anywhere in North Carolinas Outer Banks) isnt complete without an evening at The Left Bank. The name is a play on words with both the Left Bank of Paris and the left bank geographical location of the restaurant overlooking Currituck Sound. Large floor-to-ceiling windows provide a sublime setting and ordering is simple. You choose a three-course dinner or the extravagant seven-course Chefs Tasting Menu--with several choices in each category for the three-course option and a sumptuous set seven-course menu. Personable long-time restaurant manager Lynette Sumner knows her wine and will recommend perfect pairings. 1461 Duck Road, Duck, North Carolina. 252-261-4111 (8419 for Left Bank direct). www.thesanderling.com.
Todd Jurich's Bistro; Norfolk, Virginia
Located just across the street from the sparkling new cruise ship terminal (opening spring, 2007) Todd Jurichs Bistro brought upscale dining to downtown Norfolk. The personable Jurich continues to raise the bar. Locals in the know watch for barbequed yellowfin tuna and crab cakes on the ever-changing lunch and dinner menus. During a day in port or before setting sail on a cruise, visiting cruise ship passengers in the know head to the restaurant for lunch and a glass or two of wine (including more than 50 interesting half bottles--like several Opus One vintages). 150 West Main Street, Norfolk, Virginia. 757-622-3210. www.toddjurichsbistro.com.