Alluette's Café 

Dining Description:  An organic soul food cafe with items like fresh hummus and fish stew.

User Rating:  ★★★★★ ★★★★★ by 2 Users

Hours:  Lunch (Mon.-Sat.), Dinner (Thurs.-Sat.), & Sun. Brunch

Price:  $$$, $$$

Features:  Staff Pick, Menu

Dining Features:  Sunday Brunch, Lunch, Dinner

Neighborhood:  Downtown

Reviews / Comments (7)

Showing 1-7 of 7

★★★★★ ★★★★★

I had the worst experience I’ve ever had at a restaurant, and I eat out quite a bit. I’ve lived in Charleston for almost 7 years and have gone to just about every restaurant in the city. We went to Alluette’s tonight with a Groupon that was expiring tomorrow, so we expected the place to be crowded, even though it was a Tuesday night. We had also read about the restaurant and knew the food was prepared from scratch, so we expected to wait for a bit. We were seated right away when we arrived. It took about 15 minutes for us to get our drinks and place our orders. We were ok with this, since the place was busy, and the owner/waitress was nice about it. Things proceed to go very much downhill from there. We both ordered entrees, and I ordered soup, since I was hungry and figured that would be served quickly. I was very wrong. After waiting about an hour and 45 minutes and seeing 4 other tables who arrived after us receive their salads, I finally got the salad that came with the meal, only because my husband mentioned it to the owner, who only made excuses for the bad service stating that they mostly took reservations on Mon, Tues, and Wed and had a lot of walk-ins tonight. At that point, we had had empty iced tea glasses for about 30 minutes, and it took another 15 minutes plus asking multiple times/people to get a refill. We also mentioned the service to our waitress who also had multiple excuses, and asked us if we had researched the place, stating that if we had, we would have known that everything was made fresh, which means it would not be served quickly. I actually had researched the place and expected the service to be slower, but not receiving a salad for one hour and 45 minutes and not receiving our entrees for 2 hours and 30 minutes still seemed excessive to me. When my husband asked the waitress if they had researched how Groupon works , in that most people use it at the last minute, she replied that that was “retarded,” since they gave six months to use the Groupon. It wasn’t until well after we expressed our dissatisfaction to both the owner and waitress and had our entrees that the waitress asked if we would like a piece of cake or a cookie on the house. We declined, and when we paid our bill, we were charged the full amount of our meal. We had hoped that they would do something to make up for our awful experience, but no luck there. While we were there for 2 hours and 45 minutes, we saw multiple groups leave before receiving their dinners, and we talked to multiple tables who were also having the same bad experience we were. I almost can forgive most of what happened, since they seemed to be short staffed and not prepared for having Groupon customers, but the way we were treated by the owner and waitress was not acceptable. We were only given a half-hearted apology after speaking with them multiple times, and nothing was done to make up for the wait and bad service. Not to mention the food was not very impressive. The fried chicken was good but nothing exceptional. The lima bean soup was probably the best thing we had. The fried shrimp had no flavor at all. There are so many wonderful restaurants in Charleston. Don’t waste your time here.

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Posted by Colleen on January 8, 2013 at 9:45 PM

Just had lunch there and the food was good. Fried shrimp were some of the better I've had and fish stew was average. Fried shrimp are $14.95, but you'll have to give them $1.50 more if you want some fries. I'm aware that you're going to pay for the organic ingredients, but $20 crab cake and $10 slice of chocolate cake on the menu for lunch...come on! Good atmosphere and friendly service, but you might want to bring about $30-$40 if you're having lunch for two! I wish them well, but they need to work on the pricing.

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Posted by bbbox on July 10, 2008 at 2:15 PM
★★★★★ ★★★★★

After reading the great reviews for Alluette's, we were looking forward to a wonderful meal when we stopped in for dinner on a Saturday afternoon. Only only one other table was occupied, but the service was slow. The food was was a disappointment --- small, uninspired servings at a fairly steep price. The items displayed in the glass-fronted refrigerator sure didn't look organic. We left hungry, and later we ended up at Bon Banh Mi, where we had a terrific sandwich.

I don't think we'll be back. I can't believe this is the place about which we heard such good things.

report 1 of 3 people like this.   
Posted by changemonger on January 9, 2013 at 7:39 PM

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Posted by Paolo Knows on September 24, 2010 at 9:01 AM
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