Stepford, Hilton Head & Buttah! - April 13th

On Monday, we decided to venture out of Beaufort for a day trip and head down to Hilton Head. I had been there years ago, but only vaguely remembered it - lots of golf courses and Palmetto bugs - granted, I was a kid, so that's pretty much what I would recall.

I thought today's trip would be an excellent way to finagle a trip to Habersham (, which a planned community in Beaufort that I had read about in Southern Living and always wanted to visit. The houses are cottage-style and they revolve around a downtown. So I figured, since I had Larry, Scott and Gwen captive in the car, I could talk them into a quick pit-stop before heading to Hilton Head.

I had originally thought that Habersham would have been built right near downtown Beaufort, but it's actually situated on the outskirts of town, a bit out of the way, but I suppose with good reason because the development is huge! The nice this is that there is more land than houses, so you really feel like your plopped down in some land preserve with lakes, walking trails and shops and restaurants - pretty much ideal if you ask me.

We first went to the "downtown" of Habersham, which had a few stores and restaurants, however, the odd thing was - and this was consistent with all that we saw while driving through Habersham - we couldn't find any people. Granted it was duirng the week, but no people. OK, maybe 1 or 2.

As my travelmates pointed out, it was a bit Stepfordish. I, of course, refused to accept this because the houses were so beautiful. I mean, if Larry and I suddenly won the lottery, I would love to have a house here or by one of the plans and build it in Crystal Lake.

We drove around for awhile and headed for Hilton Head.

When we arrived in Hilton Head, I was struck with how developed it was since the last time I was there. Yes it was golf course after golf course, which is what I expected, but the odd thing was it seemed like one strip mall after another! I guess I thought there would be a downtown Hilton Head or something for us to walk around - To each his own. but I think we were all happy that we didn't pick Hilton Head to be our vacation house spot.

First we went to the Tanger Outlets, which is pretty much a given with Gwen and I - who can turn down an opportunity to shop?!? I managed to get a few things - mostly at the cosmetic outlet which had some great deals on Bobbi Brown - love her stuff, but even at the outlet, she's pretty pricey.

It was already a bit late when we found the winery, Island Winery ( I think we were a somewhat disappointed at first because 1) it started to pour, 2) the winery was closing in 10 minutes and 3) it was just a big metal building. I guess after visiting wine country in California I was expecting to see grapes growing in a field etc., not a building in a business park with a small store. On the plus side, we were able to do some quick tastings and Scott and Gwen bought some delicious wine.

So now it was about 6ish and we had a problem: although I found lots of restaurants on the Web for Hilton Head, they were all spread out and in god-knows where strip malls, so we had no idea where to go for dinner. Thankfully, one of the winery staff did point us in the right direction on some good options. So we hopped in the car and checked out a couple.

As it continued to downpour we decided it was ridiculous to search aimlessly for a place to eat, so we decided on The Old Oyster Factory (

It was right on the water and looked great – packed – but great. So we headed inside and unfortunately had to dodge the rain as we bolted inside.

The restaurant reminded me of the seafood restaurants in Connecticut and it just made me happy because it had such a familiar feel to it – can’t take the East Coast out of the girl! I was just praying that we’d have good food since we seemed to be on a roll of great restaurants on this trip.

We had a great, albeit rainy, view of the water – we were pretty lucky with our table because even though this place was huge, it was still packed with people. We ordered our food (I ordered the petite fillet – yum!) and settled in with our drinks.

The waiter brought us a complimentary basket of hushpuppies (deep-fried balls of cornmeal - what's not to love!) and what I thought was a bowl of ice cream – having tasted HPs only once before, I wasn’t sure what the local custom was.

We were actually all staring at said bowl as the waiter set it down. We then realized that it was not ice cream but one “honkin’” bowl of BUTTER! We were actually all muttering that it was a huge amount of butter and the waiter said “You’d actually be surprised how many people ask for more butter.”

Now I LOVE butter – I have the hips to prove it! - but I know when to say when, and this was just an obscene amount if it. I felt my arteries clogging just by looking at it!

The food was pretty tasty and we all left stuffed and happy – thankfully, we only sampled the HPs and sans butter, so our arteries were left relatively unscathed.

Unfortunately it was still raining when we left to head back to Beaufort, so we napped in the car (except for Larry!) on the way “home” in order to rest up for an evening of wine, Rumicube and Dominoes.

The evening was topped off with several rounds of Dominoes, with Scott and Larry “arguing” over moves and Gwen and I just laughing, sipping wine, and laughing some more.

No comments:

Post a Comment