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Eye of the Tyler: Culinary palate advances past melted cheese, broccoli

  • Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Dishcrawl participants were (from left): Tyler Heffernan, Nathan Wier, Sean Latif, Caleb Copper, Moe Belleseuille, Vanessa Leduc, Benjamin Guion, Ashley Barker, (squatting, center) Paige Ingle and guide Zheng Hwuang Chia. COURTESY OF VERVE MEDIA PHOTO + VIDEO

My culinary palate is similar to that of a 9-year-old's. I don't like several vegetables, a lot of Asian food doesn't appeal to me and pizza shouldn't have more than pepperoni and cheese.

So, yeah, melt some cheese on my broccoli, Mom; it's like I never moved out.

Yet, two Tuesday nights ago, I was eating things I can't pronounce – or spell – at Bambu, an Asian restaurant in Mount Pleasant. Then, I walked a couple blocks to Shelter where I ate something that had collard greens in it. After that, I tried a spinach dip at Wild Wing. And, finally, I finished by eating flan at Senor Tequila.

Here's the kicker: I liked 'em. I was part of the Dishcrawl crowd, walking along Coleman Boulevard to sample foods at four different restaurants.

Briefly, Dishcrawl brings a bunch of strangers together to try foods at different restaurants that are all in walking distance. I'd like to think my readers know a lot about me.

You've been involved in my adopting of a puppy. You've (hopefully) chuckled at some zings at my girlfriend. And, we've even shared injury stories.

Now, I invite you to laugh at my elementary-developed taste buds.

The crawl started at Bambu, where I quickly ditched my chopsticks for a fork. Our group of about 10 people sampled the following foods, which are listed with descriptions from our tour guide, Zheng Hwuang Chia.

At Bambu

Tuna tataki: thinly sliced, seared tuna over daikon (white radish) salad with scallions and ponzu

Chicken pad Thai: stir-fried Pho noodles with chicken, shrimp, egg, onions, sprouts, peanuts and tamarind sauce

Spicy truffle edamame: tossed in white truffle oil and chef's special spice mix

Japanese popcorn shrimp: crispy, tempura shrimp tossed in spicy aioli and spring greens

Salmon-lemon roll: Sushi roll topped with kani/imitation crab, cucumber, salmon and thinly-sliced lemon

Red & white roll: Sushi roll topped with spicy fresh tuna, cucumber; topped with fresh tuna, avocado and white tuna

Scam roll: Sushi roll topped with kani, cream cheese, flakes; topped with shrimp, avocado, kani salad

The Shelter Kitchen + Bar

Chicken bog: a restaurant specialty

Charleston pimento cheese with water crackers

Lowcountry rolls: Pulled pork, collard greens, homemade BBQ sauce

Wild Wing's Cafe

Golden pretzel bites with bleu cheese/ranch dip

Cold spinach dip

Red dragon wings: hot teriyaki sauce

Gold rush wings: honey BBQ sauce

Senor Tequila's

Flan: baked custard served with caramel sauce

Churros: deep-fried dough rolled in cinnamon and sugar with whipped cream


Have you had any wild restaurant experiences? Have you tried to expand your culinary palate, like columnist Tyler Heffernan? Email theffernan@moultrienews.com with your story. It could be featured in an upcoming Eye of the Tyler column.

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