The Jones Oyster Co. brings fresh seafood to downtown Greenville
GREENVILLE, S.C. – The Jones Oyster Co. recently opened its doors, bringing fresh seafood and a coastal vibe to downtown Greenville.
“We’ve been here only a few weeks, and almost, literally, everything on the menu is seafood,” Table 301 Corporate Chef Rodney Freidank said. “It’s just a small space right in downtown. We wanted it to be a cozy, regulars kind of place where people could just relax and have a good time. It’s not really very upscale, you know, but it’s all about fresh seafood. We’re bringing in the freshest stuff we can get.”
The Table 301 Restaurant Group’s newest restaurant is located on East Court Street next to Connolly’s. The restaurant’s name gives a nod to the old Jones Furniture Co., which occupied the space in 1929.
With about 40 seats in the restaurant, Chef Freidank said their goal was to have an intimate space to enjoy the flavors of the coast.
“Carl [Sobocinski] is from up North, and I’m also from Long Island, so we grew up eating these lobster rolls and clam rolls and things like that, right? There was no place really in Greenville that you’re getting those, you know?” Freidank said. “The thing about here is it’s East Coast seafood with just a hint of New Orleans. It’s not just New England, but it’s a lot of New England. It’s not just the South, but we’re in the Carolinas. It’s got to be a little bit of the South. You can get kind of the flavor of the whole coast.”
Because of the size, The Jones Oyster Co. does not take reservations.
“We’re open from 11 o’clock in the morning all the way through the evening. Five days a week. I will tell you this. I managed to get out of here early one day, and I said, ‘Oh, let’s grab the family. We’re going to come for dinner.’ I showed up and it was an hour-and-a-half wait. I had to go eat at The Lazy Goat,” Chef Freidank said with a laugh. “It’s a great spot. Just come on out. No reservations. With this few seats, it’s almost a disservice to have reservations and have tables just sitting there when people are dying to sit at them.”
If the chef can’t even get in, you know it’s good!
WHAT’S ON THE MENU?
“Probably the most important thing [on the menu] is the oysters. We’re an oyster company, so fresh oysters,” Chef Freidank explained. “Literally, they’re coming out of the water, and they’re here within a day or two, so very, very fresh. Then those are gone within just a few days. Literally, we’re bringing in oysters every single day, and that’s your raw oysters on the half shell.” See full menu here.
Aside from oysters, word is getting around about the lobster rolls. The Jones Oyster Co. offers two types of lobster rolls: Maine and Connecticut.
“We’ve got the Connecticut lobster roll, which is amazing because it’s all of this fresh-cooked lobster that’s drenched in butter,” Freidank said. “And then we have a locally-made bun that we put that on, like a top-sliced hotdog bun that is made by our friends at Bob Jones University culinary program. So, I’m really proud of that and that relationship.”
“We’ve gotten very good reviews,” Freidank said. “The team is really focused every day. When you do simple food and when you do seafood, it’s really about focusing on getting it as close to perfect as you can and as fresh as you can. So, keeping your ordering tight, making sure the techniques are being done right. We hand-cut our fries in house, so we’re making sure those are getting done right every single day. We have our own seasoning blend that we’ve made up that seasons our peel-and-eat shrimp and seasons our French fries and potato chips and things. Even coleslaw, we’re cutting cabbage and making slaw from scratch, and everything has some level of love and passion put into it.”
The Jones Oyster Co. is open Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 11 a.m. until 9 p.m. It is open Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. until 10 p.m. Visit the restaurant at 22A East Court Street in Greenville.