Tucked away on the busy Upper Meeting Street is the oasis called Tu. Innovation and concept melt together in this new restaurant brought to you by the owners of Xiao Bao Biscuit. Joey Ryan, Josh Walker, and Josh’s wife Duolan Li are always one step ahead of giving Charleston what it’s been lacking in flavor. They’re always on the cutting edge with bringing bold ethnic flavors together in an ultra hip setting.
If your expecting more Asian infused dishes at Tu, you’ll be surprised. Their menu is all about multicultural influences and unexpected pairings. Duolan Li describes it as “New American” which means it’s a melting pot of flavors from South America to the Middle East. Of course presentation is everything, just look at this Fennel Salad topped with edible flowers.
After living in New York I was spoiled with access to any ethnic food I wanted and it’s so nice to see a place that embraces many cultures and celebrates it. Don’t get me wrong, I love the food in Charleston, but there’s always room for another quality restaurant, especially one that offers diversity.
I’m not a strict vegetarian, but I always gravitate towards the veggie focused dishes. This beet dripping with chimmichurri and griddled provolone had my name written all over it!
The other surprise at Tu that I’m obsessed with is it’s decor and overall vibe. First off they have parking in their courtyard, and to the left of the parking is a traditional Charleston home with two dining rooms downstairs. One room is their private party room, ready for a karaoke sing off or a dance party, or both. The blush walls paired with the glossy green ceilings would make any interior designer drool.
The other dining room is painted a matte black, lit by only a few dim sconces and a neon light. The mood is sexy date night.
Adjacent to the traditional house is the modern building that they custom built. The orange velvet banquettes set against the pink plastered walls have a 60’s throwback (my favorite era in design). Every detail is so well thought out and so unique to Charleston. It’s what we’ve been wanting, but didn’t know it until it arrived. This place is perfect for a date night, girls’ night, or when you want to impress your friends or family who are coming into town. Thank you team Tu and Xiao Bao Biscuit for continuing to elevate the southern dining experience and always bringing the flava!
With the beautiful Duolan Li who is about to pop!
Their menus are tucked away in these cute Japanese children’s books.