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“Food Heaven!”

Ocean Room at The Sanctuary
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $10 - $90
Cuisines: Sushi, Steakhouse, Grill
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Business meetings, Scenic view, Special occasions
Dining options: Reservations
Description: The Ocean Room, Kiawah Island Golf Resort's premier Forbes 4 Star and AAA 4 Diamond restaurant, offers an unparalleled steakhouse experience, featuring a variety of signature dishes. The Ocean Room culinary team is committed to supporting local farmers by utilizing locally sourced beef, seafood, poultry and produce when writing their seasonally changing menu. Complementing Chef Jason Rheinwald's cuisine is Wine Spectator's "Best Of" Award Winning Wine Program, enticing to the most discriminating oenophile. With over 1000 selections The Ocean Room strives to showcase the characteristics of the world's finest varietals, regions, growers, and producers. A Forbes 4 Star and AAA 4 Diamond restaurant. "Best of Award of Excellence" 2010/2011 by the Wine Spectator.
Reviewed November 11, 2013

To be precise, the Ocean Room was booked all evening on the night we were there. So, we ate in the Lounge, just outside the restaurant. It was a bit more casual, I'm sure, but the menu is the same. Our service suffered only slightly in that they rushed our meal just a bit. Given that we didn't have advanced reservations, I didn't take offense to that. And otherwise, our service was great! Very attentive, if a bit less experienced than a seasoned waitstaff, and dedicated to our full enjoyment of the meal.

The wine menu is voluminous. And pricey! Lower end bottles are probably three times retail, and upper end bottles more like five. I was able to find a nice Italian Tuscan for under $80, though, and unless money is no issue, this is not the place to splurge on that library first growth bordeaux you've been craving.

My date started with The Ocean Room take on a Caprese salad. Heirloom tomatoes with burrata cheese, drizzled with balsamic vinaigrette. Magnificent! Delicate, subtle yet pleasing in texture and flavor. I started with the French onion soup, which was presented in a manner that was unique for me. The croutons were aligned like a row of sushi in a bowl, which was then surrounded by the pouring of the soup into the bowl by the server. There was no crock, no impossible cutting of half-inch cheese topping fused to another half-inch soggy crouton. The presentation allowed the croutons to remain crisp throughout the consumption of the soup. Flavor was wonderful. This was followed by a wedge salad, topped with apple-smoked bacon bits and house-made bleu cheese dressing. The dressing proportion to salad was perfect to allow sufficient flavoring of the entire serving without overpowering any one bite, and the bacon, while scant in portion size, was seasoned boldly to allow perfect blending of flavors without overpowering of any one ingredient.

For the main course, my date had the seasoned flounder with beans with a side of lobster mac and cheese. The flounder was delicate, flavorful, moist and tender. The lobster mac and cheese was a showstopper! Big chunks of lobster meat combined with an al dente macaroni and a cheese that neither wilted under the flavor of the lobster nor overpowered the dish. I'd say it was the star of the night, although my ribeye steak was a close second. The cut was marbled like a ribeye should be, but was far from fatty. Perfectly prepared to medium-rare temperature, the steak was tender, juicy, and had flavor to spare. We topped off the meal with coffee and a chocolate meltdown cake. As warm caramel was poured over the cake, the outer chocolate shell melted away to reveal a brownie ala mode. So rich and decadent, we couldn't finish it. Total bill with tip: $330

I've had the pleasure of eating at dozens of other five star restaurants. This meal was easily in the top five meals I've ever had (along with the Four Seasons in Toronto, and the Penrose Room at the Broadmoor in Colorado Springs). Kudos to The Sanctuary for sharing the master chefs behind the Ocean Room with the rest of us.

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Thank Bryan T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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216 - 220 of 304 reviews

Reviewed November 6, 2013

The Ocean Room is certainly an impressive facility. Beautiful elegant dining room. The food is very good but , for the price, not overwhelming great or memorable. Service , while very unctuous and polite, was very slow. For a restauraunt of this price and quality, I expect my water glass to never be empty- not on our night. It was a Saturday night but room not absolutely packed.
It is very nice and worth a visit but very very very expensive and not sure it will be high on my list for a repeat visit. Thought food at Heges on John's Island just as good and much better value.

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Thank skinisin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 10, 2013

For those who prefer steak, this is your place. The meat starts at the high end of quality and goes up from there. Had the basic filet and it was outstanding. Good wine selections. Constant service from multiple servers assured you that you were important.

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Thank Allen727286
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 5, 2013

I had been to the sanctuary before, but never dined in the main dining room. While in the area on vacation, we decided to go as a family - we were not disappointed. First of all, this is hospitality at the finest level - all the servers are there to make sure you have an incredible experience. Our primary waiter (he had several assistants) was both incredibly knowledgable and very engaging. In case you want to understand the level of detail they focus on, there were stools for the ladies to put their pocket books on so they are not on the floor. We experienced a gourmet meal from start to finish, with fresh local food and fine wine from places far away. The food was delicious, the wines a grat accompaniment, and the service made it all come together. I should also say that the views are excellent. After dinner, we walked on the beach and laughed as we enjoyed the sand and the water - what a memorable evening we enjoyed thanks to the staff of the sanctuary!

Thank David M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 24, 2013

Everything, hostess, server and food, was just outstanding. Never had a better brunch in my life. A bit on the expensive side but this is not something you do everyday fresh shrimp, oysters on the half shell (all you want) deserts of all kind and much, much more. Everyone who has the opportunity should go and enjoy the Sanctuary Sunday Brunch at least once.

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Thank grannypuc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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