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  Besides the Old Bull Tavern, Saltus has been our go to place especially when visitors are in town.  The varied changing menu always included sushi, wood grilled steaks and fish, and entrees such as roast chicken, duck, shrimp and seared scallops.  When my husband suggested we go for an early dinner, I took a peek at their menu and was surprised how much it shrunk.  Hoping some great specials might be available, we decided to give it a go.  

The bar was packed so we stuck to our table reservation.  I perused the dinner menu, and nothing, I mean nothing looked intriguing, creative, or exciting.  It read like a thousand other dull dining venue menus.  Beaufort is in serious need not just of good, consistent, high quality eateries, but ethnically diverse ones as well.  Seeing Saltus' offerings shrink to indistinguishable mediocrity, really disappointed us.  Even though I was prepared to make an appetizer/salad combo, I decided to try the evening's special, a grilled swordfish with mashed potatoes and green beans.  My husband ordered a Caesar and some sushi. Our server, who was excellent, had worked at Saltus for a long time and informed us that a new chef was on board.....which, if inexperienced, could have been the reason they cut out so many dishes from rotation?

I was a bit concerned once my plate hit the table as it was a mound of food.  Obviously no attempt was made at plating or presentation.  Once I tasted my fish, however, I was impressed with its execution.  It was a perfectly grilled and maintained its moistness and delicate flavor.  The mash was fine, but the serving size was over the top and the pairing of this style potato with the fish just didn't work for me.  There are so many incredible ingredients available now, it's unfortunate that local chefs don't take advantage of the bounty. Instead, they continue to turn out your basic potato & protein dishes.  Yawn.

My husband's Caesar was bland, missing the usual powerful flavors from the garlic, the cheese and the anchovies.  He enjoyed his sushi, but it was neither memorable nor particularly fresh tasting.  We were so sorry to have had this experience at one of our better liked local restaurants.  Someone needs to get back to basics here.  Whatever their current strategy is, it's not working.

thumb Regina S.
3/12/2023