We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Not sure we could find this without our GPS, glad we did”

Bowens Island Restaurant
Ranked #92 of 946 Restaurants in Charleston
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Seafood
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night
Restaurant details
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night
Reviewed January 21, 2014 via mobile

This was recommended by one of my my daughters and she is particular about where she eats and what she recommends as she used to work in a great restaurant in Decatur, Ga. We were visiting from St. Augustine but have been to Charleston many times but never really ventured outside the City to eat. There were four of us, including relatives from Dallas, and all four of us loved Bowens. The atmosphere is really cool, right on water, or close, it was at night. I felt like an authentic fish house, benches, tables, booths, nothing fancy etc, which was great. Two of us had the fried oysters, which were OK but a little much breading made it hard to taste the oysters. The other two had something like you would get at a low country boil, they loved it. Will try something different for dinner next time and there will be a next time:))))

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank Brad0131
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (692)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language

453 - 457 of 692 reviews

Reviewed January 5, 2014

We love oysters, and that is what Bowens Island Restaurant does best. We arrived on a Saturday night close to 7 pm and the line had lessened to a 15 minute wait. It is best to come around 5 or closer to 7 to avoid a wait in line. You stand in line and give your order to the cashier and pay (they now accept credit cards except AMEX). You can order beer there, or get your beer from the bar. They have many local beers on tap as well domestic bottles. If you come with a group, let one person grab a table while the rest are in line. Once you have placed your order, grab some paper plates, extra napkins, and little containers of ketchup, cocktail sauce or tartar sauce. If you order a tray of oysters ($14.95), you have to go downstairs and get in a line to pick them up. If you order the seafood platters, a server will eventually come through the place, calling your name with your order. A tray of oysters with a side of fries and slaw is a lot of food for two people. Warning: if you like your food to arrive at the same time, that may not happen. Our oysters were up pretty quickly, but the fries arrived about 20 minutes later. If you are type of person that needs a white tablecloth and real plates, likes health food and sedate settings, this is not the place for you. We had a ball, and will be back the next time we are in Charleston.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank Thea2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 2, 2014

Someone up north told us about this restaurant, otherwise we may not have seeked it out or found it!
Like the sign inside states " if you have a problem with alcohol,cholesterol or protocol. You are in the wrong place!". Staff was friendly. Service was good. I got the Half ( boiled) & half ( fried) shrimp platter. I wouldn't bother with the boiled shrimp again because the fried were soooo good. This is not a criticism just a comment. Hubby got the fried oysters. He left a happy man. Multiple local beers on tap.

2  Thank Rachel S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 30, 2013

The Oysters are amazing! Service was excellent and all the food was delicous. Highly recomend the oysters!

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank Danny F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 18, 2013

My wife and I were familiar with Bowens Island since we'd both eaten there in the late 60s, but had not returned since that time. We visited twice during Thanksgiving week and promise we will NOT stay away so long again! Fried shrimp and fried fish are good, but this place is unmatched when it comes to fried oysters. Serving portions are huge and prices very reasonable. Bowens Island is rustic, with food ordering at the bar, mismatched tables and chairs and a laid back atmosphere on the part of patrons and staff. There's not much parking and the dining space (really one large, communal room) can get crowded between 6 and 7 p.m. But any serious oyster-eater should experience their tasty fried morsels at least once, or twice, or maybe even more.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank Pete P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Bowens Island Restaurant also viewed

Charleston, Coastal South Carolina
Folly Beach, Coastal South Carolina
 
Charleston, Coastal South Carolina
Folly Beach, Coastal South Carolina
 
Folly Beach, Coastal South Carolina
Charleston, Coastal South Carolina
 

Been to Bowens Island Restaurant? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing