224 Rutledge Ave, Charleston
Absolutely incredible, one of the best food experiences I’ve ever had. Kind staff as well.Would give 5/5 but, if you’re in a rush you may want to consider if it’s worth your time. I saw a group was concerned that part of their party’s food wasn’t out timely at all. All three of my dishes came out at different times but I was sharing my meal so it worked out okay for us but not all guests.
Cute little restaurant with good vibes and an exciting menu. Their okonomiyaki is a must try! We also had the basil beef stir fry and srilankan curry fish. All so good.
This was a recommendation from the host we were staying at. Was definitely a great choice. Very authentic food served in a great atmosphere. We started with dumplings which were steamed perfectly and had a great filling and sauce. I chose the tofu and my wife got the pancake. Both were great. The tofu is on the spicy side but enjoyable. But if you are not into heat I would steer clear. Service was great and prices are very reasonable. We felt the portion sizes were big enough to share as well. The desert was perfect. It is shown in the pic. Enjoy.
We visited Charleston for half week, we eate in several restaurants but this one was the best of all! Food was amazing and the staff is super friendly! Really recomend the place if you like oriental newstyle kitchen. We had the Okonomiyaki and the papaya salad. I was so exeptic on finishing all 2 plates, we almost ended licking the plate! Was so tasty!!!
TLDR:As a foodie of Asian heritage, I had hoped better, especially since we went here on a very strong recommendation.Apparently, people who love this place, love it.Those who don't, don't.I am in the latter category.—-Before I begin, two observations:1. This place is off the beaten path a bit, but was still less than 50% capacity at 7:30 Sat night.2. Seems like all the recent reviews are either 5 star 'best restaurant in Charleston' or 1 star 'the food was not good.'THE GOOD:Service was prompt, friendly, and attentive.THE BAD:We had the okonomiyaki, the bao, and the jiao zi, and to drink, a Hanoi 75.Okonomiyaki: this should be a pancake like texture, not mush. The bacon and pork candy were salty and overpowering, the base dish itself underwhelming.Bao: the bun was good, I found the pork itself overcooked and the sauce on the pork completely overpowered the bite. Couldn't taste the green apple and peanut in the dish, this dish is close to being really good but the execution isoff. Also, we had to put the bait together ourselves. I just found that weird.Jiao zi: the wrapper was way too thick, and the filling was just ok, had a lot of ginger and not much else flavor wise. I'd normally expect a softer thinner wrapper, and flavorful pork filling with a good balance of ginger, and a light sauce that compliments the dish instead of drowning it in sodium. This dish is again, close to what it should, but fumbled at the 5 yard line.Hanoi 75: a $12 price tag for a $6 gin and tonic. There were some other ingredients in it, but all I could taste was g&t. It didn't taste bad, and yet somehow still stole a piece of my soul. I did not even finish the drink, and that’s saying a lot for me.SUMMARY: If the food is your priority, this ain't it. If the hang is your priority, this could be the move.
Fantastic lunch here today. Great friendly service and beautiful, fresh, flavorful food. We split the cabbage pancake (with fried egg and bonito flakes), papaya salad, and green fish curry (snapper). Perfect!
Terrible food. Everything was way too salty and overpriced for how it tasted. To add insult to injury everyone at my table got diarrhea the following day. Beware!
A variety of menu options! I have never been disappointed after ordering a dish I've never had before. Strong bold flavors with fresh ingredients.
My boyfriend and i are working remotely and got an air bnb for a month and this place was on the way to most places we'd walk. It has upbeat music and twinkle lights and the patrons all seem to love being there. We went in 2 days ago for the first time and despite them being clearly busy we were greeted instantly and seated. You instantly are pulled into a cool trendy atmosphere and although it's a young cool crowd (not college young), there were a table or two of older people that discovered this amazing spot. I had huge respect for the staff immediately even before we ordered, EVERYONE is running their butts off. I haven't seen hustling like that in a restaurant since idk when. They aren't over staffed at all and if you watch them they are strategic, efficient and seem to have a synergy that's entrancing to watch. The food: Dumplings DO IT flavorful, delicious and obsession worthy packs a punch but in a fresh spice not too hot way There is a beef/rice main entree that is INCREDIBLE i got it twice in 2 days! I recommend getting dumplings and saving the leftover sauce to pour in your beef and rice Bao buns - the combo of pork belly and buns is obviously delicious but these stand apart. The sauce is unique and drool worthy and they add thin slices of green apple to the plate to add to your pork/bun sandwich OH MY LORD what a fantastic combination! And i have allergies and unlike some fancy pretentious restaurants and staff these people were knowledgeable, kind and caring. Peter was our bartender and he was just the best great positive energy and i felt like he was enjoying being there. We love you XIAO BAO BISCUIT
Phenomenal! Szechuan is our favorite and we had a wonderful lunch here on our first day in Charleston. Vegetarian and carnivore-friendly, great vibes, and drinks! Highly recommend.
Omg! I think xiao bao may have just secured a spot in my top 5 favorite restaurants of all time. The menu is small but mighty and every dish we tried packed so much flavor!! We ordered the kickass papaya salad, the xbb fried rice which was kimchi and pulled pork when we visited and the dumplings. Things come out as they are ready. We got the papaya salad first. Not at all what I expected but was super crunchy and tasty. Had a good bit of spice so beware if you are sensitive to that. Fried rice, omg YUM!! So flavorful and packed with veggies. Pork was tender and had a hint of sweetness. This dish was to die for, we were definitely fighting for last bites. It was a bit pricy at $20 but well worth it. Dumplings were expertly seasoned, just the weird amount of chewy and the sauce was phenomenal! Highly recommend. Will definitely be back here if we are ever in Charleston again. Will certainly be talking about it for months to come
Second time here. This place is one of those unique places that must be a local favorite! It looks run down, peeling paint, somewhat unkempt. But it is literally the look of the place that makes it so special. That is the look. It must be intentional. Because it gives the place such a fun, relaxed, hip vibe. But that doesn't matter at all, BECAUSE THE FOOD IS SO GOOD! Like, really good. So many flavors, so many choices. And honestly, everything is phenomenal. This isn't food you can get just anywhere. It's got an Asian kinda street food feel, but is prepared with serious attention to the quality and content of each dish. Just go and try everything. We did. And will be eating our leftovers tomorrow. I will come back here every time I visit Charleston, and it will be my first recommendation for foodie friends who visit! Also, great outdoor seating. And you can park on the street or in their small parking lot.
Food is interesting and the menu offers a lot of unique selections. If the food tasted as good as the menu read, it would be an easy 5 star restaurant. Unfortunately, the kitchen seems to choose salt as its main ingredient in every meal. Conceptually, ever dish is amazing. If you choose to go there, order a glass of water instead of a cocktail. You'll need it.Also don't plan on paying with cash. There is a blackboard sign hidden underneath the bar (behind/next to a stool) with a small blurb handwritten in cursive, using pink chalk, that apparently says card only.
Best food on the planet. Extraordinary chefs. Waitstaff are phenomenal. THANKS!!
The okonomiyaki was insanely good! We ordered two more things (dumplings and spicy pork over rice and green beans) that didn't do it for us. But the drinks (the one with the spicy honey, apple juice and ginger beer) were awesome!
224 Rutledge Ave, Charleston, SC 29403