Cru Cafe

4.8
3861 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Comfort Food
It's the Holy City's Hidden Gem! Cru Café is Charleston's home to some of the best gourmet comfort food in the Lowcountry. Cru Café is the culinary creation of renowned Le Cordon Bleu graduate, Chef John Zucker. Opened in 2002 in response to overwhelming demand, Cru Café is a culinary destination off the beaten path in in a classic 18th century Charleston single-style home. Cru Café and its award-winning Cru Catering division are consistently ranked as top eateries by locals and tourists alike. From our famous Four Cheese Macaroni to our tasty Thai Seafood Risotto, we feature something for everyone. And if you're in the mood for lighter fare, try our Chinese Chicken Salad or Duck Confit Salad. Guests of the restaurant can enjoy daily specials, indoor and outdoor porch seating, a wine list tailored to the varied menu and rich, mouthwatering desserts. We invite to stop in and enjoy a delicious meal with us today.
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Private dining
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
Comfort Food, Fusion / Eclectic, Southern
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Hours of operation
Lunch: Tuesday - Saturday: 11:00am - 3:00pm; Dinner: Tuesday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm, Friday & Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm
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Phone number
(843) 534-2434
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
John Zucker
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Catering
Voted Charleston's best caterer consecutively since 2001 by the Charleston City Paper, our Cru Catering branch offers full service customized catering, in-house personal chefs, corporate catering, receptions, weddings and private parties. Please contact us at 843-534-2433.
www.crucatering.com
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Cross street
East Bay St
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Parking details
Cru Cafe does NOT offer parking. The gravel lot across the street is owned and operated by Palmetto Carriage Company. There is a public parking deck located off Pinckney Street behind the Bank of America building. The address is 200 Meeting Street.
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Entertainment
Private Upstairs Dinning Room available for up to 18 people.
Additional
Banquet, Beer, Cafe, Chef's Table, Counter Seating, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Outdoor Smoking Area, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Takeout, Wine

Private Dining

Our private party area is upstairs above the general dining room. It seats 18 comfortably and can be arranged/decorated however you choose. Please contact us for details.

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What 3861 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.8based on recent ratings
4.8
food
4.8
service
4.5
ambience
4.6
value
Noise · Moderate
99% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

We requested outdoor seating on Open Table and only indoor seating was available at our reservation time. Aside from that it was great - food and service was amazing!

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CM
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We return here again and again with out of town guests and it never disappoints.

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EJ
Baltimore
3 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Just perfect! From service to beer to taste and atmosphere!

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LB
Pittsburgh
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Came highly recommended and did not disappoint. Management and staff were delightful. Food was full of flavor. Was able to sit at the chef's table and entire lunch was a wonderful experience.

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DW
Milwaukee
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Second time at Cru, just love it! The food is amazing and the location is great.

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OT
Charleston
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Always predictably delicious!!!

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TB
Atlanta
5 reviews
Dined on October 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing meal-every single time!

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C
Chicago
17 reviews
Dined on October 2, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of my favorites places to eat in Charleston. Unique and delicious menu. A true taste of Charleston.

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OT
Charleston
1 review
Dined on September 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent place to enjoy great food and wonderful wines! Friendly atmosphere. Highly recommended!

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C
Washington DC
45 reviews
Dined on September 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always enjoy Cru. Fresh, healthy ingredients well prepared and presented.
Service is friendly and prompt.

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g
Detroit
5 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

We had a nice lunch here last week. We enjoyed the service and the entrees. We arrived about 20 minutes early on our reservation and had to wait until that time to be seated. We opted to wait in the entrance as it was hot and steamy outside. We could have taken a porch table right away. There is not very much space to wait inside. I would say that is the only downfall of this place. The food was delicious and the service was excellent.

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OT
1 review
Dined on September 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome food!

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R
Charleston
9 reviews
Dined on September 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food is amazing! I loved the shrimp tagliatelle; some of the best pasta in Charleston! Smoked salmon toast also delish

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J
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

If you are looking for a slightly off the path restaraunt with a small but tantalizing menu,this is it. It is perfect after an afternoon walking around Charleston or before heading out to a night cruise or show. The food is great and ecclectic and the staff is very friendly.

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AC
Charleston
7 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Fabulous food and service. Highly recommend. A bit noisy, but not too bad. Excellent!

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AT
Charleston
6 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The scallop special we had September 2018 was one of the best scallop dinners I've ever had. Our group had a fantastic time and we all enjoyed our meals.

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M
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent meal!!
Quaint little restaurant built into an old house downtown that specializes in local ingredients. Our server, Chelse, was great. She was attentive and made sure we had everything we needed. Recommend you make reservations or you may not be able to get in as it filled up quickly while we were there. Would definitely eat there again.

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PC
1 review
Dined on September 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Terrific lunch offerings - delicious soup of the day and sandwich combos.

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C
Orange County
19 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Loved the food and the service!! Can't wait to go back!!!!!

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J
Dallas
5 reviews
Dined on September 5, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My friend and I went for our birthdays. The food was phenomenal and service was excellent. Would definitely recommend.

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KK
Phoenix
37 reviews
Dined on September 5, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

reasonable pric, good service presentation was very good and nice portion a little noisy as space is small

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JB
1 review
Dined on September 5, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food! Great staff and great service! Intimate setting and friendly atmosphere. Highly recommend. Reservations recommended.

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JM
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on September 4, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Cru Café is our go to place for lunch whenever we are in Charleston!!! We must try it for dinner if the lunches are any indication of the dinner menu...

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OT
1 review
Dined on September 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wow! We were surprised that it was actually a house. Super cute setting. The service was great! They sat us right at our reservation time. I had the salmon and it was PERFECT! So good! My husband had the NY Strip and it was delicious. You can’t go wrong with this place. They also have a lunch menu that I would love to try!

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OT
Atlanta
1 review
Dined on September 1, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Anniversary

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DE
Charleston
1 review
Dined on August 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

One of my Charleston favorites. Consistent quality and service.
Be sure to make a reservation even for Lunch.

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MR
Houston
1 review
Dined on August 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The best food my husband and I ate in Charleston during our trip! Delicious!

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OT
New York Area
10 reviews
Dined on August 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The entrees were exquisite and the service friendly and attentive. Perfect dining experience!!

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A
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on August 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fried green tomatoes and Mac and cheese were to die for. All the food was wonderful. Cru is in a 175 or so year old house so not a ton of seating. Reservations recommended!

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R
Atlanta
66 reviews
Dined on August 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

This is one of five reviews of Charleston restaurants my wife and I dined at during late August/early September. The grading is based upon each individual restaurants character. i.e. Casual, Upscale, Tourist,...

This was our first night and my wife and I were out walking and decided to "preview" the Cru Cafe before going back and changing for dinner. The restaurant sits on the corner of Pinckney St and Motley. My wife giggled a bit when seeing the sign. Motley Cru? The restaurant was small and a bit on the rustic side. It had a few tables for outdoor seating and a scattering of 2 and 4 tops along with a large table for groups inside. It was, well, not very impressive. After discussing we decided, since our daughter had recommended it, to proceed with our dinner there that night.

We arrived back at 7:30 and the restaurant had filled up with nearly every table taken. Still, we were seated promptly and a friendly server came to the table immediately to take our drink orders. Despite its size and the fact that it was crowded the noise level was very acceptable and my wife and I could enjoy a quiet conversation. As indicated the ambiance was rustic but the seating was comfortable and we settled in nicely.

I started with the small plate of tomato and mozzarella. The portion was huge and the fresh, fresh tomatoes were cut thick as was the mozzarella. The dressing was drizzled lightly on the dish and did not overwhelm flavors of the food. My wife had the tomato basil soup. Delicious too.

For our entrees I had the scallops in a mild sauce surrounding a polenta of gruyere cheese and corn meal that was almost too delicious to eat. The scallops were large and grilled to perfection. The meal was incredible. My wife had the Thai seafood risotto. It was spicy and filled with a variety of shellfish and sea fish. She shared a bit and it was delicious.

The restaurant is a "must go there" for anyone who loves great food in a casual setting. Highly, highly recommend.

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n
Charleston
27 reviews
Dined on August 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Consistently the best food in Chucktown. Love this place!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on August 28, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Visiting an old friend in Charleston who recommended we all eat at cru cafe! It was extraordinary! Fantastic!! Thai seafood risotto was out of this world as was the poblano and mozzarella fried chicken! A must go to when in Charleston!!

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M
New York Area
9 reviews
Dined on August 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

CRU cafe is awesome. The food is always fabulous, lunch and dinner. The people are super accommodating. It’s a gem.

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MS
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on August 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I had the best meal I've ever had in Charleston. It was just a simple dinner that was amazing at every step of the process form our seating to the specials to our entrees and desserts. Our server was great and knew the wine list and gave us good recommendations. I will return many times.

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MH
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on August 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love it. Every time we go we sit at the counter & meet cool people

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OT
1 review
Dined on August 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was great as always

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JS
1 review
Dined on August 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food and ambiance! Highly recommend this restaurant.

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H
Charlotte
1 review
Dined on August 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Been going to Cru Cafe for 18 yrs. It is one of my all time favorites.

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OT
Raleigh
1 review
Dined on August 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Small but quaint place, good service and quality food. Absolutely need reservations for dinner times.

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FL
New York Area
16 reviews
Dined on August 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We have been to all or most of the most popular restaurants in Charleston and enjoyed Cru at least as much as the best if not more. This unassuming cozy restaurant provided top rated food and service. I had a special grilled peach marinated in balsamic and stuffed with cheese that was amazing and an angel hair pasta with mussels and shrimp that was extraordinary. My husband had a caprese salad and the grilled basil shrimp. We shared a wonderful bread pudding for dessert. Everything was amazing. We can’t wait to go back!

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