After a full day of activities, it is quite easy to work up an appetite. We recently made a trip out to John's Island, South Carolina as a day trip to escape downtown Charleston. One of our last activities of that day led us into the Charleston Distilling Company for a 5pm drink and recap of the day. We actually did have that drink or two, and in addition we added on their Distillery tour. Be sure to follow us on NewsBreak as the Charleston Distillery content will launch soon. The trip to the distillery was an outstanding end to a long day. The next thing we needed was something great to eat. The wonderful staff at the distillery overheard us talking about options and without hesitation, recommended Crust Wood Fired Pizza.
At first, we were hesitant to give them a shot. We all know how many great culinary opportunities can be found in Charleston and surrounding areas, but we heard it was the original location, locally owned by Steve Watkins, and open since 2013. We agreed to drive over and check it out. As it turned out, it was just a short trip from both the distillery and on the way towards our hotel. We will also admit we snuck a look at TripAdvisor - Crust reviews and they had some nice compliments. With hope and hunger, we put 1956 Maybank Hwy Charleston, South Carolina in the GPS and about 10 minutes later, we pulled into the lot. The initial signs were all positive. There were plenty of cars in the parking lot and ample parking spots. A couple of folks were leaving and seemed to be smiling which also gave a warm indication of what their experience may have been. We were eager to find out for ourselves. You can see below, the restaurant has some seating out front that is semi-covered and the Crust sign that is placed high above had just enough patina to capture your eye.
Inside we were greeted with a smile immediately. We were hoping to grab a couple seats at the bar with a view of the wood fired oven, but it appeared that we arrived moments too late as another couple sat in the prime viewing seats we coveted. With all the remaining bar seats already occupied, we settled on a well-worn booth in the right rear of the restaurant. Shortly after settling in, our waiter approached with a Crust - Menu and a couple glasses of water.
It did not take long for us to find a couple of red wines; they also have a nice compliment of local and craft beers which they rotate often. We recommend asking them what is fresh on tap upon arrival if beer is on your mind for the night. Crust also had a well-rounded wine list, and we found that it was reasonably priced by the glass.
We ordered two glasses of wine and two pizzas. The Margherita pizza was expertly cooked, the crust had a perfect char as you would expect from a Neapolitan style pizza. The Mozzarella cheese melted nicely into a slightly sweet and tangy tomato sauce. The Margherita is made with fresh Mozzarella, garlic, basil and olive oil. This option was definitely a lighter and more balanced flavor profile from the Classic Cheese we bought. The Classic Cheese featured the same great crust and tomato sauce, but was topped with a generous amount of shredded Mozzarella you would typically find on a NY style pizza. It was good, but cheese lovers benefit from this one the most. We ordered the two different style cheese pizzas to compare the base level pizza. It is, in my opinion, the best way to judge a pizza place, as too many toppings can hide a poorly executed pizza or bland dough.
I can assure you, Crust did not have any issues with flavor or execution, so feel free to order whatever you have a taste for. They do also provide a nice list of customizable toppings so you can have it your way or choose one of the thoughtfully created pre-built options as well. They even provide options without tomato sauce which is nice for those who may try to avoid sauce for whatever reason.
We found that the Cantina Zaccagnini, which is a Montepulciano wine, or the IL Bastardo Sangiovese were perfect compliments to the pizza and the red sauce items on the menu. As an added benefit because you are a Buzz with your Cuz reader and follower on Newsbreak, I can share with you on Tuesday nights they have half price bottles of wine from 4pm to 8pm. All you need to do is ask your server for more details and don't forget to tell them Cam sent you!
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The Verdict - Highly recommended. This locally owned pizza joint is the real deal. The wood fired oven is well ran and you can tell. They have the staff to provide an outstanding service and the food to back it up. We recommend trying the Margherita pizza, and a Cantina Zaccagnini to wash it down. If you do not drink alcohol, you will find all the typical drink options. You can expect to spend between $10 and $20 per person based on our experience.
Where - Crust Wood Fired Pizza - 1956 Maybank Hwy Charleston, SC. They also have locations Downtown Charleston and Summerville, SC.
When - currently open from 11am - 10pm, 7 days a week. Call ahead to confirm times or any other questions at 843-762-5500