Let’s try this again…
I have to explain that I have avoided Langdon’s for many months, and here’s the skinny.
When we first moved to Charleston in early summer we stumbled upon Langdon’s, literally. It’s located in the oddest place – a Bi-Lo shopping plaza off Rt. 17 and they are in the strip mall section of it. But we were hungry and decided to give it a try.
A small, dimly lit, yet inviting restaurant welcomed us. We sat at the bar and the enjoyed a lovely dinner with the bartender. When we talked about our recent relocation the chef sent out a complimentary appetizer which was very kind. Food and service were great and we vowed we’d be back.
We returned for a special occasion not long after that and it was just awful. Although I’ll write about a restaurant, I seldom call them about an experience I’ve had, but this time was different. I called and asked to speak to the manager. The young lady that answered explained that she was the manager. In fact, she was ALSO the server we had the night before (this is a model I’ve not seen before, GM and server). She apologized and said if we came back she would make sure everything was terrific and that she would personally wait on us, even though it didn’t go that well the first time around… I explained that we had reservations for a business dinner a few nights later and that we were thinking of cancelling, based on our experience the night before. She convinced me not to and said she'd personally wait on us and make sure every detail is perfect.
Visit #3 – nothing special. Not only did she not wait on us she waited on every table around us. I personally wasn't feeling the love.
Visit #4. We were rushed and decided, based on convenience, to try Langdon’s for lunch. We were pleasantly welcomed by the hostess and asked if we could sit at the (empty) bar. She said sure. The bartender (who was also serving in the dining room), came over quickly to take our order. We ordered a large bottle of sparkling water which he preceded to spill all over the bar as he poured our glasses. Rough night? I thought.
Since I had walked the Ravenel Bridge in the wee hours of the morning, I was famished. Uncharacteristically, we ordered the Thai Spring rolls to start. While we were waiting we were served piping hot bread and whipped butter. Very nice.
The Thai Spring Rolls were terrific, but small. They were served very hot, with a light kick of spice to them with what appeared to be a jalapeno infused dressing. BUT, with 12 other patrons in the restaurant the appetizer took over 15 minutes to arrive, which seemed like a very long time.
This length of time could only be surpassed by our lunch order which tookeven longer to arrive. As we were waiting the server/bartender came behind the bar and began to wash glasses directly in front of us. Not altogether a bad thing, but do you think he would have said one word to us while he did it? Zero.
When lunch arrived it was lovely. The “Wedge” with salmon was tasty with nice pieces of bacon, egg, tomato and the salmon perfectly cooked. The only complaint that I would have would be to tell the chef to raise the temperature on the walk-in, since the lettuce was almost frozen.
The Garlic-seared local shrimp in a lavash wrap with avocado, sprouts, cucumber, sweet & spicy dipping sauce and a fresh mesclun salad was also very good. There were definitely no complaints about the food. The service was lacking, but that’s ok some times when the food can make up for it.
When we got the check there was a small sense of sticker shock. Yes, people can say, “You read the menu, what were you expecting?”, but it was still a surprise. Thai Spring Rolls (2 – very small), $9.00; Wedge salad (moderate size) $11.00; Salmon $6.00; Wrap (moderate size) $14.00. I don’t know what the large bottle of Voss was, but with tax our bill was $50.00! Yes, it was unusual that we ordered an appetizer, but without it the bill still would have been $41.00.
I would not dissuade anyone from going to Langdon’s as the food is very good. But service is definitely not up to par for the price of admission, the food took an extremely long time to arrive and the place is pricey. Buyer beware. Other than that Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play :-)
We gave Langdons 3 plates out of 5