Everything tastes better homemade – Blue Turtle Bistro is proof. The midtown restaurant makes its entire menu from scratch, from its bread to its sausage. And, case in point, the sandwiches are tastier, the sauces are creamier, and even the biscuits seem fluffier.
A member of the Gaslight Group (the same owners of B. Matthews Eatery, Blowin’ Smoke Barbecue, and Abe’s on Lincoln), Blue Turtle has a slightly different feel than its “siblings.” Here the focus is on healthy and innovative offerings; more lightly-dressed salads and seafood pastas than southern-fried chicken and country ham. Popular dishes include the Cured Salmon Sandwich and the Blue Turtle Fish Tacos for lunch, a wide collection of soups and salads, and dishes like Braised lamb and Jamaican Jerk Baby Back Ribs for dinner.
The bistro is the first of the Gaslight Group’s restaurants/bars to be located outside of downtown. Thankfully, for those of us living in midtown, it brings their renown for quality food that much closer!
Blue Turtle is open for lunch and dinner every day of the week in addition to a popular Sunday brunch. The dishes for brunch are also varied and fresh, including the traditional pancakes and eggs benedict, but also surprising you with more creative concoctions such as Smoked Shrimp and Grits with Gravy and Duck Prosciutto and Spinach Polenta. We were told by our waitress in a tone of excitement that on Sundays the chef serves up the bistro’s house-made sausage with biscuits and gravy. Surely it’s something that shouldn’t be missed.
The Dishes: Risotto of the Day, Philly Sandwich, and Strawberry Basil Shortcake
What’s Special About It?
Eleanor: “The chefs and owners clearly had a lot of fun with the menu at Blue Turtle Bistro. Nearly all of the choices have a slightly different spin to them; a Cool Papaya Melon soup special and a Seared Scallops and Duck Prosciutto pasta dish, for example, are just some of the interesting things you can try at the restaurant.”
Kenda: “I was already a pretty big fan of the sister restaurants, B Matthews and Blowin’ Smoke BBQ, so I knew the food at Blue Turtle Bistro had to be good. It definitely didn’t disappoint. I appreciated their attention to style and detail to the dishes that were served, as well as the blending of ingredients.”
What Did It Taste Like?
Kenda: “The Philly chicken sandwich was just what a philly ought to be – topped with warm, gooey cheese. I chose the brie, as recommended by our waitress, which gave it a pleasant sweet zing. My side of choice was the bacon cheddar potato salad, which may sound decadent but was surprisingly light. It had a nice smokey, salty taste from the bacon and cheese. The strawberry basil shortcake was unlike any strawberry shortcake I’d ever tasted. The basil-laden strawberries were both herbal and tart. They were drizzled in between and on top of the shortcake along with fresh whipped cream, giving the biscuits a moistness.”
Eleanor: “I ordered the day’s risotto (the restaurant offers a different combination each day). The rice itself was done to a creamy perfection, and the lemon and sage sausage (made by the chef himself) added a hint of sweetness amidst the contrasting bitter and tangy goat cheese and spinach. It was the ideal summer comfort food.”
What Did We Say About It?
Kenda: “The perfect location for midtown Savannahians or tourists looking to try something beyond downtown, the Blue Turtle Bistro is a gem of a find!”
Blue Turtle Bistro
5002 Paulsen Street
Hours: Monday – Thursday, 11am – 9pm
Friday & Saturday, 11am – 10pm
Sunday Brunch, 10am – 2pm