By Becky Billingsley
Monday, July 18, 2011, North Myrtle Beach - Mandy Dennis-Hunnell is a second grade teacher most of the year, but this summer she is manager at the new Cherry Grove Seafood Hut in North Myrtle Beach where she is selling a lot of fresh local fish, shrimp and more.
The restaurant is across the street from the ocean at the east end of Sea Mountain Highway in the former location of Cherry Grove Deli, and partners Dan Cribbs and Keith Carver opened it on June 7. The restaurant has a handful of tables in a small and immaculate dining room, and behind the counter is a small kitchen where fresh seafood can be grilled, blackened or steamed.
Appetizers (called Bait) are $2-$7 and include Fried Green Tomatoes, Hushpuppies, Fried Pickles, Fried Okra, Calamari and Shrimp Cocktail. They also have wings in four flavors: teriyaki, mild, barbecue and Asian Zinger.
Seafood Platters are $11-$15 and come with fries, slaw and hushpuppies. Those baskets can be filled with shrimp (regular or Calabash style), oysters, scallops, clam strips, crab cakes, soft shell crabs, fish of the day and many combinations thereof.
Many of those same seafoods can come as a Po' Boy sandwich, or you can have shrimp or chicken on a house or Caesar salad.
They have house-made She Crab Soup complete with sherry, Crab Cakes made with lump meat and daily specials like shrimp sauté full of fresh locally grown vegetables.
If a customer wants something not on the menu, Dennis-Hunnell encourages them to ask for it, saying, "If we can do it, we'll do it."
So far their seafood bakes are selling extremely well. They go for market price (right now $32 for two, or $55 for four people) and include corn on the cob, Snow Crab legs, oysters, clams, local shrimp and fish of the day such as flounder, triggerfish or whiting.
This fall a new deck will be added to the side of the restaurant facing Sea Mountain Highway.
Cherry Grove Seafood Hut is at 203 Sea Mountain Highway, and the number is (843) 249-8700.