As promised, here are my family's favorite restaurants on Hilton Head Island.
Hudson's Seafood on the Docks
This could easily be our family's favorite restaurant. The location is wonderful, and you won't even mind waiting for your table with all of the outside attractions. Take a look at the old shrimping boats, have a drink at the bar, and relax while listening to live music on certain nights. Once your table is called, you'll be served with hushpuppies instead of bread. For those of you who have no had a hushpuppy, you're missing out. And Hudson's makes the best hushpuppies. They're sweet and savory at the same time, and the outside is crispy while the inside is incredibly fluffy. I could have eaten the whole basket.
When it comes to the entrees, there are your classic staples: oysters, shrimp, scallops, and fish. My favorite dish is the combination platter because you can choose two of the above, and have 4 different options of how you'd like them prepared. The fried oysters are by far the best, but I ordered the pan sauteed scallops as well (such a good choice). The fish specials are pretty remarkable too, so make sure to check those out. This is easily the best seafood you will find on the island.
The Crazy Crab
You go to the crazy crab for one thing: the atmosphere. The place is filled with mismatched ocean paraphernalia, but the best part of the restaurant is the crazy crab himself, sporting a hat similar to that of that of Gordon of Gordon's Fisherman. It's a fun, family-friendly place to spend the night, and both restaurants are located on prime spots on the island. The Crazy Crab on the north end of the island has outdoor seating where you can watch crazy crab races and watch the sunset over the low country. Meanwhile, the Crazy Crab on the south end of the island in Sea Pines is a wonderful locale where you can walk around and look at all of the shoppes before and after dinner. I have been to both locations and have enjoyed my meal and experience at each one.
Like every restaurant, the Crazy Crab serves hushpuppies within its bread basket. The hushpuppies aren't as tasty as the ones at Hudson's, but they do serve them with a delicious brown sugar/maple butter. Like at Hudson's, though, you definitely need to go with the combo platter, whether it be the fried or broiled one, depending on what you're in the mood for. I had the fried oysters and scallops, which were both delicious and cooked very well, especially the oysters. My parents had the broiled dish, which they said was a perfect and equally satisfying alternative to the fried food. The Crazy Crab offers a wide selection, and the atmosphere makes it a destination you should certainly visit while on Hilton Head.
The Sea Shack
The Sea Shack boasts itself as "the place the locals go," which is exactly what you'll find. Here's a tip about the Sea Shack: get there early, or else wait on line outside for at least 45 minutes. Once, our family did call ahead for take out, but when you go there you will actually be able to see the daily offerings for sides and specials. The first time we went to the Sea Shack this trip, we went for dinner. It was the middle of the week and I was getting a little tired of fried food, so I decided to get grilled fish and shrimp. Such a good choice! The shrimp were seasoned and grilled to perfection. My brother had the blackened fish and agreed that the amount of seasoning was perfect. The Sea Shack will give you a lot of food with your order, and all for an incredibly reasonable price.
Which is why we went back for lunch the next day.
If you choose to do this as well, you need to get a Po' Boy. This version of a Southern hero is incredibly simple but delicious. My mom, brother, and I each got one, and all of us devoured our sandwiches without saying a word. In fact, I completely forgot to snap a picture I couldn't wait to eat it. All of the variations of the Po' Boys are delicious, and like the platters you can get them grilled, blackened, or fried. And unlike at other places, the Sea Shack isn't stingy with the amount of seafood they put on your Po' Boy. If you plan on eating dinner in one night, make sure you treat yourself to some Po' Boys at the Sea Shack.
There are a myriad of other restaurants on the island, but these are the seafood ones that my family goes to most often. These restaurants should not be missed if you ever get a chance to visit Hilton Head Island. I hope these past two posts have convinced you to take a trip to Hilton Head, my family has spent the past 4 years vacationing there and we've loved every trip.