A taste of New England. That’s what’s on the menu at The Jones Oyster Co. (22 E. Court St.), Table 301’s newest concept in a familiar favorite downtown space (formerly Soby’s on the Side), opening in early 2023.
We got a sneak peek inside, a taste of the food and drinks to come, and — our favorite — a Greenville history lesson.
Though the renovations are new, the space is designed to feel familiar and rustic, with natural nautical elements surrounding you as you munch on hush puppies, sip on craft cocktails + indulge in seafood favorites from New England to The Lowcountry (more on that in a minute).
The restaurant is cozy, with just 45 seats and no plans to take reservations.
Katie Thompson — Table 301 Creative Director — hopes guests feel transported to the beach of their childhood, with each detail hand-picked by Katie + Carl Sobocinski, Table 301 founder and restaurateur, who put on his hard hat as general contractor for Jones. DYK: It’s the first time Table 301 managed its own restaurant renovation?
In addition to all the coastal vibes, the restaurant pays homage to what once occupied the building: The Jones Furniture Company in the 1900s, hence the historic nod on the front of the building.
As you sit at the bar, peep the scalloped shell chair, wallpaper mimicking wave patterns on the sand, and wood slats resembling a teak sailing deck.
You can’t miss the oyster board, inspired by a concept spotted by Katie during a visit to an old lobster shack in New England. The modern twist will notify guests of featured oysters of the day.
Speaking of the oysters of the day, you can pick your own chilled raw oysters from the daily selection, let the chef choose, or throw back one of three oyster shooters. We tried the “She’s a Bonnie Lass” with a smoky shot to follow the oyster.
Take a bite from The Big Easy with an order of the Nola Grilled Gulf Oysters — complete with garlic butter, herbs, parmigiano-reggiano, precorino romano + a crusty bread, Danielle’s pick from the menu.
It’s not a trip for seafood if you don’t start with apps and shareables. Enter: A basket of hushpuppies, a chowder — or in this case New England Clam Chowdah, and the smoked Carolina fish dip.
For our entrees, the Charleston Shrimp Burger, topped with a lemon caper tartar sauce served with coleslaw stood out (in fact, it was Kyle’s favorite), along with the Low Country Crab Rice made with rich claw meat.
It doesn’t stop there: Grab a lobster roll (Maine or Connecticut Style) with rolls sourced by Bob Jones’ cullinary program, or po’boys (with Carolina shrimp or Gulf oysters).
Get ready for a craft cocktail menu with coastal sips like the “Smokey Jones” with Lunazul Reposado Tequila, Del Maquey Vida Mezcal, pear purée, lime, and simple syrup. You’ll also find a unique wine list featuring small vineyards and wineries from around the world.