By Becky Billingsley
Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2012, Conway - The new SoHo University restaurant is all about sushi, seafood and hibachi meals by day, but late at night it's something else.
SoHo University is a new restaurant, bar and nightlife spot near Coastal Carolina University that is hard to categorize.
The original SoHo, owned by longtime Myrtle Beach restaurateur Sam Laurens, has long been a downtown sushi go-to spot. Laurens’ new SoHo University also has sushi, and its menu lists many of the same Asian dishes as the original location.
What’s different is the addition of many casual foods to the menu like wings and burgers, much more space and a thriving nightlife scene.
At the heart of the business is an enormous bar with more than a dozen televisions suspended over the middle, so anyone seated at the bar has an excellent view of sports action. General manager Mark Rebolini says SoHo University has all the premium viewing packages for NFL, NHL, NBA, Big East, Big South and more.
On one side of the bar are tables in front of a huge dance floor, and behind that is a wall with a giant television screen and a computerized LED light system that can be programmed with messages (like Happy Birthday), or the lights can thrum with the music.
Two dining rooms are on the other side of the bar, and one is an enclosed non-smoking area. The décor throughout is sleek and chic with Asian touches.
The sushi bar is at the restaurant’s rear, behind a group of Buddha statues, and the choices are many. All day on Tuesdays and Thursdays, several eight-piece sushi rolls are half-price, including Salmon Tempura, Dancing Eel, Tiger Roll and Spicy Girl.
Other weekly specials include free wings on Fridays and prime rib dinners on Saturdays and Sundays for $11. For football fans there’s a special football menu on Mondays, Fridays and Saturdays when during the game wings are 25 cents, appetizers are $5 and PBR tall boys and drafts are $1.50.
Menus don’t get much more varied than this one. Appetizers range from Tahini served with pita and Coconut Shrimp to Spicy Soho Shrimp, Shumai and Crab Rangoon. Diners can have Chili, French Onion Soup or Miso along with Greek Salad, Caesar Salad or Seaweed Salad.
Wings are jumbo-size, and flavors include mild, medium, hot, teriyaki, garlic Parmesan, barbecue and honey barbecue. There are Baby Back Ribs and Grilled Salmon, and several burgers include Chili Cheeseburger, Black and Blue Burger, and the Veggie Burger made with brown rice, quinoa, bulgur, corn, black beans and roasted peppers. The SoHo Burger has Middle Eastern flair: it’s a kebab served in pita with onions and parsley.
Hibachi, Lo Mein and Skewer meals all come with miso soup or salad, and a Foot-Long Hot Dog can be topped with jalapenos, sauerkraut, salsa and more. Those hungry for a sandwich can go America with a Philly Cheese Steak or Triple Decker Turkey Club, or get more exotic with a Gyro or Chicken Parmigiana. If combining international cuisines is more your style, there are Hummus Pita Panini or Grilled Cheese Panini.
Some people go for the fresh flat breads – like mini pizzas – such as Margherita style with fresh tomatoes and basil, or Mediterranean with feta, Kalamata olives and red onions.
If you’re going for lunch, the Lunch Box Specials are delicious and affordable at $8-$10 each. They’re similar to bento boxes and are filled with choices like Filet Mignon Hibachi, Spicy Salmon Roll, Fried Shumai and Salmon Sushi.
As the night air cools the outdoors, the climate heats up inside SoHo University with music, dancing and fun. It’s located within easy walking distance of many college housing complexes, and the vibe is charged with youthful energy.
SoHo University is at 1300 S.C. 544 between Conway and Myrtle Beach, and the number is (843) 347-7600. It’s open daily from 11:30 a.m. to 2 a.m.