It's only taken me three months, but I can finally move one of the entries from the "Charleston Restaurants Where I Have Never Eaten But Have Been Meaning To" list to the main list of recommended items.
Friday night my wife and I ate at Amuse, an interesting combination tapas/Italian restaurant in West Ashley. Not surprisingly, considering they serve tapas in a strip mall some 10 miles out from downtown, it wasn't terribly busy on a Friday night. The interior is ordinary--a single large room with a bar along the back right wall--but it is comfortable. All in all, it was a very pleasant evening.
The menu, while not extensive, had sufficient choices that two diners couldn't try everything. Of the six or seven plates we ordered, our favorites were the fried Manchego cheese, a duck confit with dried cherries, little skewers of lamb, and the plate of hams and olives. The sopressata from this latter plate was so rich and tasty that I bought a big chunk the next day at the supermarket to have here at home.
For twenty bucks we got a decent bottle of Spanish tempranillo, which went very well with the food.
One of the best things about the night was the service. Our waiter was personable and helpful, but never overbearing or intrusive, and he made several recommendations for selecting dishes that were right on.
There was one big disappointment, however: they were out of the seared pig trotters. They were the first item that caught my eye when I picked up the menu, and it is my philosophy that if you see something unique on a restaurant menu that you can't order just anywhere you've got to try it. And they were sold out.
So I guess I'll have to go back.
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