Ansonborough is one of my favorite parts of the city. Yes, South of Broad is where the multi-millionaires and tourists flock, but the quiet history of the old houses and beautiful streets nestled between Market, Calhoun, Meeting, and East Bay is a more subtle depiction of that Charleston charm that millions come to see each year. You can imagine my excitement when I was able to snag a rental apartment right in the middle of it, and then to learn that there is a new seafood market and raw bar opening just two blocks away...it just keeps getting better.
167 Raw had its opening this weekend at their new location on East Bay St. across from Harris Teeter. Hailing from Nantucket, this 40-year-old family-run business is taking the Holy City by storm, providing downtown with an upscale seafood market and raw bar that is walking distance from the heart of the metropolis.
I walk into the small shop to come face-to-face with a case full of sushi-grade seafood and shellfish. Tuna, lobster, and cocktail shrimp stare back at me from behind the glass, and on the other side are pre-prepared bisques, seafood salad, corn salad, and homemade key lime pie.
This could get very dangerous for my bank account.
Behind the counter are a couple of (very good looking) young men who greet me with an eager smile. After I’m finished gazing at the goods (obviously I’m talking about the seafood here…), my eyes hit the food-to-order menu and I immediately know what I want.
In my excitement I ask about the tacos only to find out they are out of the ingredients for the day.
I guess I’ll have to “settle” for a lobster roll.
I am assured that the lobster roll is quite delicious and filling so I take a seat at the kitchen counter to wait for my sandwich. There are seven seats in the small shop: four at the counter by the kitchen and three more at another counter on the adjoining wall. I watch the cook prepare my meal, adding fresh ingredients to the chopped up lobster and grilling the bun to buttery, crispy perfection.
The sandwich is delicious with the perfect amount of flavor, complementing but not covering the savory taste of the lobster.
Currently in the process of trying to obtain a license to serve beer and wine, the eatery is receiving some pushback from its Ansonborough neighbors. Until then, it’s BYOB , which we don’t mind at all.
167 Raw is definitely onto something here. I'll be headed back sometime soon to check out those oyster tacos. See it for yourself and let us know what you think by commenting on Facebook!