Rutledge Cab Co.
Four words: the wait is over. After we held our breath for months, chef Robert Carter’s Rutledge Cab Co. finally opened. The Wagener Terrace restaurant offers indoor and patio dining with a bar that bellies up to both, delicious burgers, milk shakes (ask for one with a floater of bourbon), grilled pizza, wings, and brunch. We expect to see the parking lot permanently full. www.rutledgecabco.com
Fratello’s Italian Tavern
With our eyes glued to the peninsula, sometimes we overlook a new dining spot elsewhere, and such was the case with this Park Circle addition dishing up home-style Italian fare. The venue is unpretentious—a small bar faces two TVs and bistro tables line the interior. It’s perfect for a midweek meal of antipasti and chicken picatta with a glass of house white, and there’s a variety of after-dinner drinks to wash it all down. www.fratellostavern.com
Mex 1 Coastal Cantina
We were surprised when owner Jack Hurley decided to close the West Ashley branch of his popular Jack’s Cosmic Dogs chain at 817 St. Andrews Boulevard. But now that we’ve seen the result, Mex 1 Coastal Cantina, we’re willing to forsake our hot dog cravings for margaritas prepared courtesy of his mixologist son, Morgan. Shrimp tacos, tortas, and Baja bowls round out the fresh menu. www.mex1coastalcantina.com
Tucked on Sam Rittenberg is this new casual café. Opened in November, the spot offers a menu of soups; salads; sandwiches; and mains including a classic meatloaf, chopped salad, and tuna melt, all within the $6 to $20 price range—affordable and family friendly. Plus, there’s a small but yummy dessert selection (we’d go back for the chocolate cake) and a bar. www.gatheringwestashley.com