The Ordinary
The Ordinary

The Ordinary

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.eattheordinary.com/
  • Phone: 8434147060x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Dinner: Tuesday - Sunday: 5:00pm - 10:30pm
    Closed on Monday
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Seafood
  • Executive Chef: Mike Lata
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Beer, Counter Seating, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Wine

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Cannon Street
  • Parking: Private Lot
  • Parking Details: Validated Lot, Located one block south on Wolfe Street
A word from The Ordinary
The Ordinary is a Classic Oyster Hall and Southern Seafood Brasserie located in an Historic Bank Building in Charleston, SC.
Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerFit for Foodies
  • Diners' Choice WinnerHot Spot
  • Diners' Choice WinnerSeafood
The Ordinary reviews from OpenTable diners
272 reviews since July 3, 2014
Overall Rating4.4
  • Food4.5
    Service4.5
  • Ambiance4.2
    Noise LevelEnergetic
88% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (198)special occasion (131)hot spot (114)neighborhood gem (80)vibrant bar scene (76)romantic (56)notable wine list (52)good for groups (40)late-night find (15)kid-friendly (4)great for lunch (4)great for brunch (3)great for outdoor dining (2)scenic view (1)Show More
  • Worth waiting to get a reservation!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 10/28/2014
    Everytime I know I will be traveling to Charleston, I get on OpenTable immediately to book a reservation at The Ordinary. I love the ambience, friendly service and the history of the building. The only drawback...I wish they served Lobster Rolls everynight of the week. They are amazing!! Regardless whether lobster is in season or not, you will not be disappointed! I believe The Ordinary will be a mainstay in a city known for it's culinary scene! My husband and I are thinking about moving to Charleston, and I know it will be our restaurant of choice to grab a drink after work, entertain clients, and taking our family and friends to a place they won't forget!
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for lunch, hot spot, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great oysters in Charleston!
    Katelyn
    Dined on 10/26/2014
    Had dinner at The Ordinary last Sunday - the food was unbelievable and our server was SO helpful in determining the best way to order, and how much to order. Best meal we had in Charleston during our visit there. Highly recommend if you are a fan of a creative menu.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The Ordinary is anything but
    JCStarnesVIP
    Dined on 10/25/2014
    Wonderful from the time we walk in, to the drink menu, to the waitress' suggestions, to the very last bite
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Seafood heaven
    JulesVIP
    Dined on 10/25/2014
    We had an incredible seafood feast here this weekend - from the oysters (raw, smoked and baked) to the fried rock shrimp with okra, everything was so delicious and beautifully prepared. Great wine, staff and ambiance, too. A Charleston must!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • a bit fancy for our blood
    Lovefoodlovewine
    Dined on 10/24/2014
    This place was beautiful, romantic and qnique however way over prices! The good was good but get ready to pull you Benjamins out
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • JJ24
    Dined on 10/24/2014
    Octopus salad and smoked fish pate were excellent! Quality of the oysters and clams was impeccable. Just wished we could have picked the type of oysters on the shellfish platter or that there was a better variety. The local oysters are good but we prefer Prince Edward Islands, Nova Scotia and West Coast oysters (which they carried but would not substitute.)
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, kid-friendly, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Seafood In Pure Form
    mcp007
    Dined on 10/24/2014
    In a city of great restaurants, the best. No extraneous menu items or distractions. Unadorned, high quality ingredients. Only those seeking the heavy, deep-fried Low Country seafood experience could be disappointed. It's noisy and not cheap, but the flavors are ridiculously pure and consistency unrivaled. Staff is ultra-knowledgeable.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Not the Same
    FoodPlusWineEqualsSmiles
    Dined on 10/23/2014
    This used to be one of my favorite restaurants in all of Charleston, but it seems to be declining with our recent dining experience. They no longer have the lobster ceviche, the shrimp was overcooked, and the clams were over salted. The Ordinary used to be a must stop when I come to town for business but next time I may opt to try something else.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Never disappoints
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 10/22/2014
    Its seems that I always have at least one person at my table who is a first timer at The Ordinary, and is always impressed with this restaurant. The menu is interesting and the food is excellent, our waiter was extremely knowledgeable and helpful and overall everything just clicked for a dinner out. It is nice to have unique menu items that reflect the freshest available seafood, and the consistency of service is greatly appreciated.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Small portions, high prices..
    tarheel
    Dined on 10/18/2014
    As title says, also real loud could barely hear across the table. Had to wait on table with reservation and ordered drinks that took until we got to the table to get. Pearlz is a better option and half the cost.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Seafood heaven but not romantic
    Frankie
    Dined on 10/18/2014
    If you like your seafood al crudo or raw, and very fresh, this is the spot for you. Their wine list is top notch, their staff is knowledgeable, and service is commendable. Even the steak was cooked to perfection. A bit pricey. However, my main point of contention is the cacophony of the room. The noise level is almost unbearable and adding insult to injury, their choice of music the evening we were there only added to the barrage on the senses. Not the ideal place for a first date or a tete-a-tete.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Mighty fine
    jeff
    Dined on 10/17/2014
    But you got to like shellfish. Everything was very tasty and I especially enjoyed the oysters Moscow (don't forget to drink the vodka in the shell!). We were not quite full so we ordered the squid as an afterthought and were glad we did; perhaps the most impressive dish we sampled. Excellent and patiently accommodating wait staff.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • The Ordinary is not ordinary
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 10/17/2014
    Great food in a really cool setting. Pricey but worth it
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fresh Oysters
    FoodieFromAtlanta
    Dined on 10/17/2014
    The Ordinary is located inside an old bank building - easy to walk passed it. No private parking - public parking is a few blacks away. Open & louder downstairs (which had the oyster bar and drink bar.) Upstairs there was limited seating but quieter. No significant investment in the ambience (chairs not great, wall decor minimal). Service was attentive without being intrusive; was able to time our drinks, appetizers, small plates and large plates without feeling like we were rushed. Recommend raw oysters, king crab leg (just one 5" portion shelled), scallops. Left with a variety of taste experiences but unfortunately a bit hungry. Very small portions even for the "large" plates. Limited menu. Expensive for amount of food.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Best pure seafood in charleston
    AchmeezyVIP
    Dined on 10/16/2014
    This is the place for a true seafood experience. The oyster sliders are amazing, and the shellfish tower is a must. Not the place for shrimp and grits or she crab soup (plenty of other places), but for an amazing, pure seafood experience this is the by far the best place in Charleston.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, late-night find, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent Dining at The Ordinary
    AndrewVIP
    Dined on 10/12/2014
    We had a fabulous meal -- a variation of the fresh shellfish tripple decker as an appretizer -- followed by the fresh wahoo entree and decadent custard-like dessert topped with a blueberry frost. Just outstanding, as was the service.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great foor and service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009
    Dined on 10/12/2014
    Wonderful seafood. Don't go here wanting a steak - seafood is so good and the service is wonderful. They work well as a team
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • A food experience
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 10/12/2014
    We had an early dinner reservation (there is a lot to see and do in Charleston). Our service was very good, the food was prepared and served very quickly. It's best to visit The Ordinary if everyone in your party is a seafood lover. The menu is very limited if you are only interested in the seafood!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • We heart The Ordinary
    Ells66VIP
    Dined on 10/10/2014
    We visited The Ordinary as part of a foodie weekend in Charleston.. frankly this town is teeming with hot dining spots so the bar is set high. The service- to a pair of Brits on their first visit - was Southern charm through and through - the manager took time to visit our table and ask for our feedback, the chef was gracious, informative and full of tips for dinner the following night. We shared the double seafood stack.. a glorious mountain of shrimp, oysters, ceviche, lobster and clams, served with several dipping sauces. We also sampled the divine lump crab toast, perfectly flavoured and the freshest squid either of us have ever tasted. The unusual setting in a former bank adds to the glamour and fun of the dining experience. Loved it.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • For Seafood Lovers
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 10/10/2014
    If you love seafood (not of the fried variety) this is a great special occasion place (or regular place if you have many more dollars than I have). Don't pass up the house made Hawaiian Rolls.
    Special Features:
    hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 10/9/2014
    Outstanding food. Every bite was delicious. Server friendly, knowledgable but not pretentious. Hostess very kind and accommodating as we were eating with my 93 year old mother. She was right there to offer help. Great experience.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great Date Spot -get the prix fixe!
    natifoodie
    Dined on 10/5/2014
    The Ordinary has a 3 course prix fixe menu that rotates daily - for only $35/person, the quality and amount of food is almost a steal. The setting is just noisy enough to feel busy, but still makes for an easy setting to relax and chat. Would definitely recommend this restaurant to couples in charleston looking for an easy romantic night out.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Named appropriately
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010VIP
    Dined on 10/3/2014
    Since I love FIG and seafood thought I would like the Ordianry. wrong! Food was disappointing, very few vegetable side dishes, loud, wine and cocktail list average at best. Will not go back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Bill
    Dined on 10/3/2014
    My wife and I had the prix fixe lobster which was good and well priced at $35. The fish chowder course was excellent and alone was worth the trip. The Hawaiian roll bread pudding was excellent also. I would be back there in a minute.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, notable wine list, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Perfect date
    Local22
    Dined on 10/2/2014
    We loved the vibrant flavored seafood and the unique environment to match. Our waitress knew the menu very well, which was helpful.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Shellfsh
    77mtvernon
    Dined on 10/2/2014
    If you are a shellfish fan, and not concerned about price, this is the place for you. Outstanding fresh oysters, clams, lobster, crab and shrimp--most from local waters--prepared simply and well. But it's not a place for the budget conscious--be prepared to go over $100-$150 for two.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The Ordinary--anything but!
    jbndining
    Dined on 10/1/2014
    The Ordinary did not disappoint. It was anything but ordinary. Good wine selection, great bar atmosphere while waiting for our friends to arrive. An interesting menu. Unfortunately, we went late and just had wonderful salads and soup. My husband had the chowder and loved it. I had the cucumber and small bits of fish. It also was great. I had the butternut squash soup--YUM. We look forward to visiting the Ordinary on our next visit to Charleston. We are only a little more than and hour away in Beaufort.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • One of the top places in Charleston
    BillVIP
    Dined on 10/1/2014
    After eating at the Charleston Grill and other places in Charleston, we went to the Ordinary. We ordered off of the appetizer menu and each dish was better than the last. After the crab toast, fresh sardines, pickled shrimp, and the broiled oysters, we were very happy. The wine list was good and overall, this is one to put on your must visit list.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Eclectic Seafood
    travelingkatVIP
    Dined on 9/28/2014
    A great experience ... had to go early on a Sunday night to get in to this very popular Charleston eatery. This is NOT a place if you don't like seafood, particularly shellfish. Menu is somewhat limited, but what we ordered was wonderful. Service was excellent ... with servers telling you "this is your dining adventure" so order how you wish. They are very knowledgeable and offer suggestions. We had to stay at the bar at the end of our meal due to weather, and that turned out to be enjoyable too. The restaurant is located in a beautiful old bank building. All this being said, this was the hardest restaurant to get a reservation for (and the only to call to confirm), and yet it would be 4 or 5 among our favorites. Just too limited.
    Special Features:
    hot spot, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great Place to Eat
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    One thing on the menu was better than the next. The servers were very helpful in recommending what to try and the service was fast and friendly. Loved sharing several small plates as a group. Would definitely go back again. Price was great, especially for the quality of food. I highly recommend the ordinary for any occasion.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • DocDiamond
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    The Ordinary came highly recommended and the food was very good. I was a bit disappointed by the limited menue.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Ordinary review
    WillYUMVIP
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    The food was amazing, the razor clams were our favorite. We also ordered one of the shellfish towers, the seafood was cold and fresh- very important when eating raw seafood. Maitake mushrooms in sunchoke sauce was earthy and brightly balanced, the sauce did not overpower the mushroom's natural flavor. The service was a little slow to start and the bartenders could have been more suggestive and friendly- I would have preferred my recommendations to come from them instead of the couple dining next to me.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • A great dining experience
    iluv2eat
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    We dined on a Friday night and couldn't be more pleased. Our waiter was great-spent plenty of time and thoroughly explained the dishes and how best to order. We chose the Friday special-a succulent Maine lobster that was quite a bit larger than what you usually get. The squash soup that accompanied the dish and the panna cotta were both great-very tasty and well presented. The other order consisted of the fish stew chowder-also very good with a lot of fish, followed by the razor clams(excellent taste but too small) and then the oysters and beef tartare. The last one is a bit unusual and interesting-the oysters for me were the best part. Quite an experience-excellent food in a noisy place and one that is quite pricey.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Absolute best seafood in Charleston
    luv2eatout
    Dined on 9/24/2014
    Love this place always!!! We come here for every special occasion or a craving for delicious oysters and unique seafood dishes that are more than delicious!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • loud
    janjVIP
    Dined on 9/24/2014
    wonderful shell fish too much noise to enjoy conversation
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great food and drinks.
    Chelsea
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    Loved all the food, I think the pate was my favorite. The inside of the restaurant is very beautiful but be prepared for a high noise level. I would suggest to everyone unless someone would be bothered by a louder than usual environment. Dreaming about the pate....
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great resturaunt
    mjordan56
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    The service was phenomenal and personal. Our waiter, Adam, was knowledgable, friendly, and professional. The presentation of the food was inviting and the quality was exceptional. I will recommend The Ordinary highly. My girlfriend is in the hotel business and will recommend it to the guests. The Ordinary is not so ordinary. We have been to many resturaunts in Charleston, and The Ordinary is number 1.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, late-night find, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • No subsitutes
    Page
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    The menu has food groupings designed for the ultimate tasting experience. If you ask for the fish chowder rather than the clam chowder they will not sub. Same with the rice puddings and probably all items listed. Very loud and hard to have a conversation.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Would not go again
    Linloo
    Dined on 9/18/2014
    Too noisy, too expensive, nothing special about food, over rated
    Special Features:
    hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great seafood!!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009
    Dined on 9/17/2014
    Had the tower which was delicious. The cold lobster roll had a bit too much mayonnaise. Service excellent. Noise level a bit too much for a comfortable conversation.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.