New North Augusta Hotel’s Restaurant Ideal for Business Lunches
There’s been a lot of buzz over the past couple of months about the new Crowne Plaza Hotel in North Augusta in the beautiful riverfront complex surrounding SRP Park. Many happy couples have posted selfies on social media taken from the fifth-floor, open-air, rooftop bar named Jackson’s Bluff.
The scenic views of the river from that vantage point are certainly picture-worthy. So, I was excited when my editor suggested a review of the hotel’s main-floor restaurant, Salt + Marrow.
Entering the main entrance of the hotel, guests walk into a large, sunny lobby. The registration desk is on the right as you enter, but the largest part of the room is to the left, beyond a double-sided, modern gas fireplace. A chic seating area with sleek furniture is arranged in front of the fireplace, creating an inviting conversation area.
Walking through an area known as the “Parlor Bar,” the entrance to the restaurant is at the far end. We were greeted by a server who told us that breakfast and dinner are served in the main restaurant, but lunch service is in the open area directly in front of a beautiful, well-appointed bar.
We were invited to choose any table, as my colleague and I were among fewer than a dozen guests, and had our choice of tiny, two-seated bistro tables, square tables for four or a long table that appeared to seat at least 20.
My colleague and I chose a four-top table and were quickly greeted by our friendly server. We were handed an interesting, however sparse, lunch menu with two soup, two salad, four sandwich and four lunch plate options. Several of the selections tempted me, but upon our server’s recommendation, I ordered the daily fish special and my colleague chose the Grilled Prime Burger.
I’ll definitely try a soup-and-salad combination next time, since the choices were unique: fish or sweet potato soups and a BLT or kale-and-apple salad. I’m always happy to find sweet potatoes or kale on a menu. No, really, I am.
Our server brought an elegant glass bottle of chilled water to our table, poured each of us a glass, and left the remainder of the large bottle with us for refills. We had a moment of levity when we couldn’t immediately open the bottle’s levered glass stopper. Thankfully, we figured it out without the necessity of asking for our server’s assistance.
As we were waiting for our meal to be served, a few more groups of diners were seated. Our server appeared to be the only wait-staff on duty, and she did an admirable job taking care of several tables at once. Our meal arrived in an appropriate length of time and was well worth any extra wait.
My colleague’s hamburger was thick and juicy, served with small ramekins of condiments so that he could fix it just the way he desired. It was topped with a thick slice of American cheese, lettuce and sliced tomato.
He was offered a side of kettle chips or French fries, but he asked instead for a side of grits since grits were a component of several other dishes. The cheesy goodness of the Anson Mills Stone Ground grits will definitely draw him back again.
Those delicious grits played a leading role in my fish special, too. My meal came served in a large, angled bowl with a base of creamy grits topped by a grilled salmon filet and a scoop of roasted broccoli.
Everything was perfectly cooked and the flavors of each component blended perfectly. I was truly sad when my meal was finished, but I’m sure I’ll go back for another helping soon.
In addition to the food being delicious, the restaurant offered a pleasant environment for a quiet business meeting, ladies lunch or a lunch date with your beau. Salt + Marrow is sure to catch on as a quiet, sophisticated choice for a business luncheon.