Category Archives: Chuck Town Travels

Every outing is an adventure here in Charleston. Check in with me frequently as David and I are always doing something fun here in the Low Country.

The Lot

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Image from the Charleston City Paper

Last week The Southern Gent and I went out to eat at a restaurant on James Island called, The Lot. We had never heard of this restaurant until I read my August/September issue of Garden and Gun. The City of Charleston had taken out an advertisement section and it featured “The Local’s Guide to Charleston.” Inside, one local recommended The Lot. Since it is only a ten minute drive from our house, we decided to give it a try.

The Lot prides itself on locally sourced meats, veggies and fruit. As such, the menu changes daily and if for no other reason you should go to hear the impressive wait staff recite a new menu each night. However, not only was our waitress’ memory skills impressive but our meal was pretty darn good too.

I had a salad of greens with a six minute fried egg on top. It had been fried in some tasty batter and the yolk was still runny. Definitely an eating experience and one I would recommend. The Southern Gent had the strip steak with seasonal vegetables and a hollandaise -type sauce. He said it was delicious. The two people we went with ordered the pasta and the risotto dish. The pasta dish had some local vegetables and a red sauce. It was very hearty looking. The risotto dish had more of a white sauce base with a few leafy vegetables rounding it out. Both of our friends said their food was very good.

So, since the weekend is almost upon us, I would say you should stop by here one night. The decor is inviting with vibrant art work and eclectic seating (they will even bring you crayons to write on your butcher-block paper table cloth) and if you time it right you might be able to hit a show at The Pour House next door after dinner.

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The Wolverine

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gal_00_flWhen The Southern Gent and I were still dating we went to a Halloween party together and he dressed up as Wolverine. We dressed him in a wife beater and good jeans, put some claws on his hands, gave him a disheveled but styled hair-do and of course shaded in his stubble to look like Wolverine. I am probably biased because I helped design his costume but apart from the person dressed up as The Big Lebowski, The Southern Gent/The Wolverine looked the best.

gal_07_flWith that little back-story, you can imagine that we both were looking forward to seeing the new movie, The Wolverine. So, on Saturday we went to the local theater and enjoyed watching Hugh Jackman and a red-haired Rila Fukushima fight bad guys during some great action scenes. My favorite was the one on top of the bullet train.

I will stop there though before I give too much away. I love the X-Men movies and can’t wait for the next one. You know what that means? Stay until after the credits roll for a sneak peak of the next in this series, X-Men: Days of Future Past (5/23/2014)!

Hope you had a great weekend and your Monday is going the same way.

Wild Olive

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Photo courtesy of Wild Olive’s website.

I usually do out on the town type posts on Fridays but it occurred to me that people might make their Friday night plans on Thursday. With that in mind, I give you Wild Olive. Located on John’s Island and just down the road from one of my favorites, the Fat Hen, Wild Olive serves up some excellent Italian cuisine.

This spacious restaurant features a good size bar, a communal seating area near the bar, a small room off to the front of the building with a nice view of the outdoors and two other larger seating areas. With warm colors, hanging grapes and comfortable seating options, you will feel right at home.

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Photo courtesy of Wild Olive’s website.

Of course though, I must not forget about the food. Last week when we went we had some warm olives for an appetizer. I do not like olives but I decided to try this novelty and was glad I did. The various olives were tasty and the cloves of garlic they had marinating in oil along with the olives were yummy too.

For dinner I had chicken parmesan, a friend had the fish special and another friend had one of their signature pasta dishes. We all pronounced our food delicious and can’t wait to go back and try something else.

So, if you are looking for a good dinner place this weekend, whether you have been before or not, Wild Olive should be on your list!

Happy Thursday everyone.

Fort Benton, Montana

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They call Montana Big Sky Country and I didn’t truly understand what that meant until I moved to the east and could see only as far as the dense vegetation would allow. As the picture above shows though, you can see forever in Montana.

Taken on the way to Fort Benton, Montana, this view of the Missouri River not only highlights the beautiful vistas in Big Sky Country but it also shows the agricultural heritage that is very abundant in Montana.

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They call it dry land farming and it is how my . . .

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grandma (the lady on the left in the above picture) grew up in the eastern part of Montana in a town called Wolf Point. When my grandma married, she moved to California but my great aunt moved to Fort Benton with her husband. My mom (the lady on the right in the above picture) remembers coming to the small town of Fort Benton during the summers when she was in high school.

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My mom and her cousins would drive into town on this old bridge, which now is open only to foot traffic.

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They would cruise the “strip” of Fort Benton that is maybe a mile long and populated on one side (the Missouri is on the other) with buildings like this . . .

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and this. This house is called the I.G. Baker House and it is one of the oldest in Montana.

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Fort Benton was quite the place back in its day. In fact, it boasts a block known that was known as the . . .

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Who would have thought that this now, sleepy little town was once a place of so much action?

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A famous canine even called Fort Benton home. Shep, who was forever faithful.

Remember that movie a few years ago with Richard Gere, Hachi? Well, this is not the same dog but pretty much the same story. Dog’s master rolled away on the train one day never to return and the dog lived out its remaining years near the train station always waiting for his master to come home.

The live dog there in the picture above is my mom’s dog, Moose.

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So, if you ever venture out to Montana, Fort Benton is a cool little town to stop in, walk around and enjoy a nice lunch. We certainly enjoyed our day there.

Hope y’all have a great weekend!

Glacier National Park

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After our morning of horseback riding while we were in Montana, our backsides were a little sore so we decided to take a leisurely drive into Glacier National Park. The Going-to-the-Sun Road was not open all the way yet but we were still able to see some beautiful sites. Above is a view of Lake McDonald.

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I believe this “creek” is called McDonald Creek. It feeds into the top of Lake McDonald.

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At one point we got adventurous and went down a dirt road on the other side of Lake McDonald and saw where the forest was recovering beautifully from a forest fire that came through several years ago.

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We walked along creek beds and saw some pretty rocks.

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I iced my foot (gotta love that plantar fasciitis) in the cold creek water – brrrrrr!

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We marveled at the mountains.

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The Southern Gent found a cool old tree trunk.

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We spied this knobby Redwood.

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Finally, we drove out but not before taking one last shot of the Park’s beauty.

Happy Thursday everyone!

The Izaak Walton Inn

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IMG_7169As I have been out of the loop for three weeks, I have very little in the way of creative enterprises to show you at the immediate moment. I was so stymied by this yesterday that I chose not to post. Today though I decided I would tell you about the hotel, The Izaak Walton Inn, where The Southern Gent and I stayed while we were in Montana.

Pictured above, it sits right outside Glacier National Park. A haven in the winter for cross country enthusiasts, this railroad loving traveler’s hamlet also offers plenty to entertain those during the summer as well.

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We watched trains go by.

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We went mountain bike riding.

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We went horse back riding (thanks to Capri from Snowy Springs Outfitters – she is almost hidden there behind the tree).

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We sat outside and . . .

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ate . . .

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great food!

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We even peaked into refurbished rail cars the Inn offers if you . . .

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are looking to try out the railroad lifestyle for a night or two.

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Overall, our two night stay there was wonderful, the staff were fabulous too and there was even this cute wooden goat!

Hope y’all are having a great Wednesday.