When dining out, you’ve likely had an “over promise, under deliver” experience a time or two.
While I can’t say, unequivocally, that Aunny’s Country Kitchen is not over promising when they state on their menu that they serve “the best down home cooking in town,” because I’ll bet there are Sunday suppers served in homes ‘round there that would give Paula Deen a run for her money; I can, however unequivocally, say that they “over deliver.”
On Sunday evenings, Front Street dining choices are scarce, and they are even scarcer in McClellanville. Recently, my husband and I were returning from a birding trip in the Cape Romain Wildlife Refuge at just such a time, and while we’d packed provisions for the four-hour excursion, they were a might winnowed down.
So at about 15 minutes to their closing time of 6 p.m., we entered Aunny’s anticipating being told they were no longer serving. Not only were they the very epitome of hospitality, they fussed over us like they’d just been waitin’ for us to come on in.
Now, I do not know how anybody could decide what to eat when faced with the full menu. I struggled when the “meat and 3” options on the dry erase board were about three quarters gone and was even more overwhelmed with the myriad dessert choices, each one sounding better than the last.
My husband settled upon grilled tilapia with broccoli au gratin, yellow rice and green bean casserole. I chose fried chicken, squash casserole, stuffing and coleslaw.
We were treated to warm corn meal muffins as a starter – delish. The sweet tea was ice cold and spot on.
Our entrees arrived and the portions were so generous that we almost needed to pull over another table.
We both went for the coleslaw first; it was creamy and had raisins in it that added just the right amount of sweetness. My fried chicken was perfection – crunchy on the outside, and tender and moist inside. I’d love to know if it was half or deep fry, but either way the chef had a deft touch. The fish was nicely grilled and mildly seasoned.
My favorite side was the green bean casserole, velvety with a kick of black pepper and the yellow rice. My husband’s were the squash casserole and the broccoli. Neither of us cared for the stuffing, but that’s subjective. It was sweet, and we both prefer a savory stuffing.
Sadly, we did not have room for dessert. Well, there is always next time, and there is sure to be a next time.
Aunny’s breakfast menu features all the traditional offerings, but steps it up with the inclusion of four fish selections, salmon croquettes, shrimp and grits, and corn beef hash.
Their lunch offerings are even more impressive. A set menu, again, includes the usual suspects – hot wings, soups, burgers, sandwiches and salads, but it ups the ante with peel and eat shrimp, seafood chowder, a selection of Po’ Boys and a crabby patty.
All this and I have not even mentioned the daily lunch specials. I sound like a broken record, but here also, expect the expected and the unexpected. Pork chops, liver and onions and hamburger steak are familiar, but when did you last see neck bone pilaf, hog maw or pig feet pilaf on offer?
Sunday’s are Chef’s Choice, and trust me, you are in good hands.
As their website declares, unequivocally, Chef Andrea “Aunny” Johnson and her staff, all local, make sure that every “dish is thoughtfully made with love, as though everyone coming through the door is family ... [and] will welcome you into the restaurant as though you were coming into their own home. Hurry up and get here, [they] can’t wait to see you!”