On a recent Tuesday evening, a friend and I drove to Tybee Island to check out Bo Bien Hut (www.bobienhut.com), the Asian fusion restaurant that opened in July.
Sure, it's still August, but the summer beach bustle has already faded. The vacation season isn't entirely over, but with many schools back in session, Tybee is a lot quieter than it was a couple of weeks ago.
Take a quick look at a few of the vacation rental websites, and you'll find dozens of properties with immediate availability.
And if you drive out to Tybee for dinner on a weeknight, you'll probably find ample on-street parking like we did.
Bo Bien Hut is at 1605 Inlet Ave., right behind Arby's. The building has been home to several other restaurants, including a Chinese spot before the structure was moved from the north end of the island.
Bo Bien Hut, which can be translated as "Vietnamese beach hut," is the third restaurant opened by Kurtis and Sarah Schumm, who also own Tybee Island Social Club and Tybee Island Fish Camp.
Unlike its sister restaurants, Bo Bien Hut does not have a dining room. Patrons order at a walkup window, and all the food is packaged for takeout, but several picnic tables are available for those who want to eat on the premises. The side yard is comfortable enough now, but with a little time and a little more landscaping, the space could develop into something special.
Bo Bien Hut also offers delivery. It seems like delivery would be in high demand on Tybee, especially to vacation rentals during the high season, but few restaurants offer the service.
A couple of months ago, on the night Little Tybee was performing at Tybee Island Social Club, I asked Kurtis Schumm about his plans for Bo Bien Hut. He replied by asking if I had ever eaten at Xiao Bao Biscuit in Charleston. That's an Asian fusion spot, too, off the beaten path of tourists, with an eclectic, inexpensive menu including dishes specific to several different Asian cultures.
We tried a number of different dishes on our first trip to Bo Bien Hut.
The crab Rangoon ($6) was the best I've had in a long time, and the three spicy duck wings ($6) were especially rich and flavorful. Regrettably, the octopus and jalapeno skewers ($8) weren't available the night we went, but both the green curry with shrimp ($12) and the banh mi baguette with grilled steak ($10) were excellent. I'd order any of those dishes again in a heartbeat.
Bo Bien Hut seems to fit in with several culinary trends in the Savannah area. We're seeing entrepreneurs explore new concepts, and we're seeing chefs experiment in fresh ways.
Bo Bien Hut is currently open from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, from noon to midnight Friday and Saturday and from 2 p.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday.