Posted by: wrmcnutt | July 20, 2009

Restaurant Review – The Sea Cow Eatery, Edisto SC

Blue_CowThis one is more than a little out of the way.  The Sea Cow Eatery is located out on Edisto Island, about an hour from Charleston.  If you are visiting Edisto Beach, or the nearby State Park, it’s conveniently located. If you’re anywhere else, it might as well be on the moon. Edisto Island is sort of the anti-Fort Lauderdale or the anti-Miami.  It’s where local South Carolinians go when they want to go to the beach and not be overwhelmed with tourists.  There aren’t many amenities and things are quiet, and reasonably priced.  One thing to solidly recommend it:  teenagers tend to consider it a living hell.  

The Sea Cow Eatery can best be described as a lunch counter with ambitions.  They have about six tables inside together with the counter that seats four. We arrived just as the lunch rush was getting started, and the good news was that in addition to about half of the tables being taken up with tourists, the counter was completely taken up by islanders.  When you’re at the beach it’s obvious.  Tourists are in beachwear, and islanders are in work clothes.

The décor is classic beach bistro – white walls, hand-painted murals, wooden chairs, and faux stone tabletops.  It’s bright, cheery, and light-hearted.  Perhaps the most memorable thing is the Sea Cow Eatery logo.  Get those manatee images out of your head.  A sea cow, properly drawn, is a land cow with a scuba mask on her face and flippers on all four of her feet.  It further helps if she’s bright orange with green accoutrements. 

The menu at the Sea Cow Eatery is typical of small, casual island eateries:  a respectable variety of sandwiches and entrees, with a large proportion of seafood.  My bride, K, had the fried oyster poboy sandwich.  The oysters were very good.  The texture was firm without being hard or rubbery.  The breading might have been a little thick.  The cocktail sauce was not exceptional.  It had a mild horseradish bite, but the suspicion is that it came from a jar, not the hands of the cook.  As usual in a seafood restaurant, I had a selection from the “Farm Buoys” sub-menu.  I had a Philly cheese stake sandwich.  The beef was sliced really thin and was nice and lean.  I suspect it might have been around for a little while, though.  It was somewhat dry, as though it was kept under a warming light.  A dash of Texas Pete cleared that right up.  Well, okay, it was several dashes.  All of us got coleslaw as a side, and we all found in quite good.  In fact, my sister S noted at the time that she didn’t like coleslaw, but really liked hers.  I suspect that my French fries were frozen.  The less said about them, the better.

  • I give the Sea Cow four pints of five for atmosphere.
  • I give the Sea Cow two and a half pints of five for service.
  • I give the Sea Cow two and a half pints of five for cuisine.

This gives the Sea Cow Eatery a score of 3 pints overall.

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  1. there is a little place out on Tybee Island that I used to love going to. totally local and you could tell the food inspector hadn’t visited in generations…it was clean, but the grand kids were helping take and deliver orders…barefoot… age 8.

    I have no idea if they are still there. But they made the most amazing chocolate malts.

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