Reviewer: Food at Habaneros in Pawleys ‘tremendously delicious and filling’ | Gut Reaction

The Habaneros special. Photo by Emily Smith for The Surge.
The Habaneros special. Photo by Emily Smith for The Surge.

Setting the Table

With a patio almost as large as the interior dining space, Habanero’s in Pawleys Island is a great place to have a casual evening out with friends or family. Two bars mean the liquids flow freely in both seating areas, which is especially important for these warm nights.

Sitting on the patio on a Tuesday or Friday also means enjoying some live music depending on the weather, while the inside remains refreshing and welcoming. There are a number of television screens on the walls along with charming decorations and art that make the building lively despite all the use it’s seen through nearly two decades.

Down the Hatch

Habaneros offers a great amount of Mexican dishes, from favorites to the lesser known meals, all with descriptions to aid. Most fans of the cuisine don’t need to have tacos or enchiladas defined, but they may still find themselves grateful for the explanations of Habaneros specials, such as their popular and very delicious Molcajete.

Another unique meal, simply named the Habanero Special, is the restaurant’s take on a surf and turf dish and is absolutely worth the venture. Thin cuts of chicken and steak are grilled with shrimp then topped with cactus, chorizo, onions, and cheese. Tortillas, rice, and beans come as the sides, along with some lettuce and guacamole. Between all the different flavors that can be combined in multiple ways, this special is special indeed.

Early in the evening, the restaurant is calm and almost quiet, even with Happy Hour well underway. The pace picks up as the sun crawls down to the horizon, with families and groups of friends, many of which are regulars, stopping by. Slow or not, the kitchen is almost faster than their servers can keep up with, and the food comes out sizzling hot.

Check, Please

As tends to be commonplace for restaurants of this fabulous cuisine, the great food is decently priced here at Habaneros. Because meals are also usually generously proportioned, customers get plenty of bang for their buck. The restaurant is happy to provide boxes for guests to take home what they cannot finish, and also offer take out (with $1 added) to those who don’t wish to eat in.

Happy Hour is from 4p.m. to 7p.m. with discounts on drinks, like $3.99 for their house margarita. The restaurant also regularly has other deals and events, all of which are usually advertised on their page, Weekdays, Habaneros opens at 11a.m. and at 11:30a.m. on weekends. Monday through Thursday and on Saturday, they close at 10p.m., then at 10:30p.m. on Friday, and finally 9p.m. on Sunday.

Just like their counterpart in Murrells Inlet, Habaneros is a fantastic part of the community and one that has been well-loved throughout the years. The food they provide is tremendously delicious and filling, all in a welcoming atmosphere, which is hard to stay away from.

If you eat

What | Habaneros Mexican Restaurant

Where | 11151 Ocean Highway, Pawleys Island

Info |, 843-235-9595