Summer Lovin’

June 2024
Written By: 
Ashley Daniels
Photographs by: 
courtesy of Chive Blossom & Ashley Daniels

Chive Blossom in Pawleys Island has been a long-time Lowcountry favorite

Chive Blossom embraces fresh design and fresh ingredients for a refreshing dining experience.

Anyone who knows me knows I absolutely despise onions. But I adore Chive Blossom Restaurant & Bar. 

It’s a hidden gem tucked under a canopy of Lowcountry live oaks off the North Causeway of Pawleys Island. Open since 2008, Chive Blossom is expertly run by the husband-and-wife owner/chef team of Paul Kelly “PK” and Trina Renault, and you will want to experience it for yourself with a visit this summer.

Indoor dining takes place in their charming beach bungalow-like restaurant, carefully decorated in a cozy, classy take on shabby chic. There’s a blend of oyster shell chandeliers, handcrafted driftwood wall art, and white linen tablecloths. If you prefer alfresco dining, the partially enclosed courtyard at Chive Blossom is a natural beauty any time of the year, complete with a roaring fire and heater towers for the fall and winter seasons, shade from the umbrellas and live oaks in the spring and summer, and strings of white lights, and tropical potted flowers and plants scattered throughout, for a magical garden setting.

(Left) Chive Blossom's Southern Bouillabaisse: flounder, clams, shrimp, and scallops with silver queen corn, local butter beans, grape tomatoes, and okra in a saffron broth; (Right) Chive Blossom's entrees, like the pan-seared Asian duck breast lunch entree.

Regardless of where you decide to dine, you will be delighted with the creative food that comes out of Chive Blossom’s main kitchen. Trina is known for her passion for desserts and soups, but her culinary skill set goes far beyond those sections of the menu. 

Hubby and I stopped by Chive Blossom for lunch on a sunny spring Friday afternoon, taking a seat at a four-top facing the cheery wall of windows that smiled with natural sunlight. Shortly after menus were placed in front of us at the table, an amazing gentleman greeted us tableside to fill our water glasses with a grand, welcoming speech that would rival any actor on stage reciting Shakespeare. We were off to a good start!

On this visit, we skipped over the starters, but they do offer she crab and tomato basil soups with a loaf of ciabatta in a sip or bowl size, housemade pimento cheese with crispy chips, crab nachos, and chicken liver plate (fruit mostarda, whole grain mustard, housemade pickles, and grilled cranberry walnut bread).

We decided on two lunch plates in the “Chilled” section. I chose the fried oyster salad tossed with spinach, baby artichokes, hearts of palm, and boiled egg in a green goddess dressing. It also comes with red onions, but, of course, I asked them to hold the onions. This salad combination was refreshingly delicious, and the oysters were fried in flavorful breading and juicy inside. My hubby rarely gets to order duck when dining out, so he ordered the pan-seared Asian duck breast, a presentation of caramelized onions, fried shallots, roasted cashews, mixed field greens, and shiitake vinaigrette. He gave compliments to the chef. 

More lunch menu options include the fried green tomato and local Ahi tuna salad sandwiches, pennini with shrimp (a blend of country ham, cremini mushrooms, spinach chiffonade, and asiago cream), okra pancakes served with Lowcountry tomato shrimp stew, crustless quiche, and more. Seasonal vegetables are plucked from their garden that is planted beside the restaurant to be used as ingredients in many dishes on the menu.

Chive Blossom's salads, sangrias, cocktails, and decor are pure artistry.

For dinner, highlights include the charred octopus starter plated with preserved lemon skordalia, fried capers, and harissa oil; shrimp-stuffed Medjool dates; pan-seared conch; Asian noodles, a vegetarian linguini dish stirred with red cabbage, carrots, shiitake mushrooms, and edamame in a spicy peanut sauce; blackened pork porterhouse; rainbow trout; grilled East Coast halibut; cioppino, and more. 

And the Chive Blossom bar is manned by some of the best mixologists in the area, who curate a long list of inspiring cocktails, wines, liquors, whiskeys, and local craft beer. We each opted for a glass of sparkling sangria, a beautiful blend of spiced rum, pomegranate, lime, small batch triple sec, orange juice, and sparkling shiraz. 

Chive Blossom Restaurant & Bar never disappoints in their high quality food, service, and atmosphere for lunch, dinner, or cocktails. The gravel parking lot that wraps around the building is always full, which is a sure sign that the Renaults have been onto something for the last 16 years on the island. 

Chive Blossom 
85 N. Causeway Road, Pawleys Island
Phone: (843) 237-1438
Hours: Tuesday-Saturday. 
Lunch, 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m., Dinner, 5-9 p.m.