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Tucked off the main drag behind a hair salon on James Island, between the infamous La Ha and the eye-catching ropes course, sits Heart Woodfire Kitchen. The cinder block building has a large patio next to it, that I’ve never been able to sit at because it has rained each of the five ( yes FIVE ) times I have been there, but I’m sure it’s just lovely to sit at when the weather clears up. The interior is warehouse-esque, with cement walls, exposed ceiling, and cement floors. It also is usually packed full of families with children, which is not really a selling point for me at dinner. The entrance feeds you directly to the bar’s cash register, which is usually where whoever is playing hostess that day is standing. I say that because I’m not sure there’s ever an actual hostess there, but you do need to wait to be seated. And wait, you will. You aren’t waiting for a table to free up, or for a member of the staff to finish with another customer. You are waiting until someone cares you are there.
Once acquiring a table, there is no question of what appetizer to get. Pork Chili Verde. Always. It’s why I trek to James Island to this little place off of Folly Road. I like chili, but I don’t love chili. I don’t particularly care for sour cream or plain cheddar cheese, but I love them both on top of this tomatillo and pork creation. Something about all of it just clicks. It’s a must-try if you go there.
It happened to be Burger Night, where they do a great deal on their hamburgers, but I was really in the mood for something lighter, so I ordered the Roasted Beet Salad ( pictured above ). This, like everything else that came out of the kitchen, too forever to receive. Once I finally did get my food, the dressing was heavy, and lacked depth. I asked for some lemon ( also took at least 10 minutes to get a plate with a few lemon wedges on it ), and after squeezing at least four lemons over the salad, I was able to enjoy it more. With a lighter dressing, it would have been okay, but instead it was soggy and heavy — the last thing I would want from a salad. This dish is currently my least favorite thing I’ve had in a restaurant this year.
My husband ordered a hamburger. The burger itself is fine. I don’t think it’s anything fabulous or amazing, but I’m also not a hamburger aficionado. It’s reasonably priced and was good for a burger. I did love the balsamic onions and pickles that came with the burger, though. I’m always a sucker for anything pickled. The burger also came with some sort of fried potato … thing. Like all wives, I was not about to order the fried potato thing, but I was happy to grab a few off of my husband’s plate for a quality control check.
Y’all, the fried potato things are delicious. I believe the restaurant calls them “Crispy Russet Potatoes”, but in my mind they will always be “Those Super Crispy but not Batter-y Perfectly Spiced and Seasoned Fried Potato Things”.
Service does not seem to be a priority at Heart. Several things on the menu ( Pork Chili Verde, Crispy Russet Potatoes) are absolutely outstanding and delicious. Unfortunately, whatever palate created those items doesn’t seem to have influenced everything on the menu.
Pork Chili Verde, Crispy Russet Potato Side Dish
Wine, or a specialty cocktail.
Casual. I’ve seen people ( albeit tastelessly ) in bathing suit coverups here.
1622 Highland Ave.
Free gravel parking lot behind and to the left of the restaurant.