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'Snappy Shrimp' at LoLa; Perfect Chicken at Home Team BBQ

What the critics are saying this week

Robert Donovan

New critic to City Paper Suzanne Cohen tackles Park Circle's LoLA in her first review. Cohen explains, "While not purely Cajun, LoLA presents its menu in a fusion of Cajun, Creole, and Lowcountry flavors, featuring Holy City classics like shrimp and grits alongside po' boys and seafood gumbo."

The critic finds some inconsistencies on her first trip: macaroni and cheese is a contender for the best in Charleston, oysters Rockefeller "left something to be desired," and she's disappointed in the consistency of the gumbo. But on crawfish boil day (every Tuesday), Cohen delighted in "crush[ing] some crustaceans and tried an "excellent" po' boy. So, go on Tuesdays?

Charleston Scene critic Hanna Raskin visits the new location of Home Team BBQ on Williman St. While this is the third Home Team to join the Lowcountry, Raskin writes, "Beyond the basics, each restaurant has its own menu and ambiance, making it impossible and irrelevant to rank them in gold-to-bronze order." She explains that the downtown location strives for a more elevated fare than just smoked meats and uses the pork cake appetizer as an example:

It wasn’t until my third visit that I put aside my preconceptions about hog flesh and excess, and in return received the prettiest plate. Here was the cake, accompanied by a continental array of fixings, arranged in a clock face pattern. Around the horn were svelte pickle spears, whole grain mustard, wedges of grill-scarred Brown’s Court bread, and a tuft of greens and field peas, exuberantly tossed in a mustard-based dressing.

And while the crispy pork cake impresses Raskin, she's ultimately won over by the chicken, calling it "the restaurant's greatest achievement." She praises, "The bird sent up an intoxicating melody of smoke and brown sugar, the best possible jingle for the wonderfully moist meat. What else could anyone want?"

Home Team BBQ

1205 Ashley River Road, , SC 29407 (843) 225-7427 Visit Website

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