“I had seen this man several times before, right here in Clary’s drugstore. He was one of the regulars who came in for breakfast every morning. Although we had never spoken before, I knew who he was. That was one of the main things about Clary’s drugstore. It was a clearinghouse of information, a bourse of gossip.” –Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil
Made famous by John Berendt’s bestselling book and the movie adaptation, this quaint southern cafe (formerly a drugstore) still stays true to its roots. Clary’s Cafe is a Savannah tradition, beloved by locals as well as visitors. It’s not fancy, but its quirkiness is all part of its charm.
Paralleled with Savannah’s own unique personality, Clary’s is a classic diner but with even more flair. The atmosphere (complete with stained glass decor and a giant jukebox), the patrons (who range from art students, to old regulars, to those just stopping by for the weekend) and the waitstaff (with their southern friendliness) all make the restaurant an experience in and of itself. The food is good as well, but at Clary’s it’s not only about the food.
With a menu consisting of breakfast and lunch, though, you can get almost anything you crave at Clary’s Cafe. For breakfast, the restaurant has a large assortment of savory egg dishes (including omelets and egg and meat combos), as well as the sweeter meals of French toast and pancakes. Lunch features a large selection of sandwiches, croissants, burgers and salads. The famous house specials boast a surprisingly diverse selection, including Hand Carved Norwegian Smoked Salmon, Crab Cakes Benedict, and a hoppel poppel dish.
The Dishes: Eggs Benedict Florentine with breakfast potatoes, Stuffed French Toast with bacon, Our Special Creamy Oatmeal and Caramel Pecan Sticky Bun (the latter two ordered by our husbands)
What’s Special About It?
Kenda: “I love that you can go enjoy a nice breakfast with your husband and friends and always get great service and food here – with a Savannah smile.”
Eleanor: “Sitting in this restaurant gives you a sort of feeling of belonging. Established in 1903, Clary’s Cafe is as much a part of Savannah as grits and seersucker suits, and whether you’re a local or just visiting for the day, this place will give you a feel for the city and welcome you to share in its secrets.”
What Did It Taste Like?
Eleanor: “The Eggs Benedict Florentine was presented beautifully, with its two poached eggs topped on English muffins and lightly layered with “absolutely fresh” hollandaise sauce and sautéed spinach. It was creamy but a still somewhat light breakfast (especially when split between my husband and me), and the breakfast potatoes (like little ‘French fry cubes’) made it a complete and filling meal.”
Kenda: “The Stuffed French Toast was pleasantly sweet, topped with fresh whipped cream and sandwiched between layers of cream cheese and strawberries. It was not overly sweet, though, even when I added syrup on top, but then again, I do have a bit of a sweet tooth. It contrasted well with the crispy side of bacon.”
What Did We Say About It?
Kenda: “Whether you are a fan of Midnight in the Garden and visiting Clary’s for that reason or whether you simply want a good dining experience, give Clary’s a try and let it charm you with its delicious food and eccentric atmosphere.”
404 Abercorn Street
Mon-Fri 7 am to 4 pm
Sat-Sun 8 am to 4 pm