The Bluffton Room - Bluffton, SC

This dinner was a part of the guys trip to RJ's. The Bluffton Room left a pretty strong impression on me. This is a modern American restaurant situated in the heart of old town Bluffton, a beautiful brick building. The old town strangely reminded me of the downtown Greenwich.

We were greeted by Tonja and Cory Hughes, super energetic and friendly couple who are the proprietors along with the chef Jeff Congdon.

The ingredients were top notch and perfectly executed.

Excellent Baked Oyster

Duck Duck Goose, incredibly decadent and original

This was one of the best duck breasts I had in the states. If you are in the downtown Bluffton, you owes to yourself to try it.

My sincere gratitude goes to the team for the great experience.

  • 2002 Louis Roederer Champagne Cristal Brut - France, Champagne (4/6/2023)
    Beautifully mature nose displaying juicy yellow fruit with a hint of white, lemon curd, baked apple, yellow peach, apple, strong brioche, light caramel, burnt sugar, smoke, sweet spices and limestone. Excellent concentration, layers upon layers of generous yellow fruit, rich, medium fine generous mousse, sweet and deeply toned, excellent precision and balance, bright acidity, strong limestone mineral, and along dense rich yellow fruit driven finish with brioche and caramel at the end. This rich and concentrated style of Cristal is drinking beautifully. This seems to show a bit more freshness than the previous bottles. (96 points)
  • 2009 François Raveneau Chablis Grand Cru Valmur - France, Burgundy, Chablis, Chablis Grand Cru (4/6/2023)
    Expressive nose displaying concentrated ripe yet pure yellow citrus fruit with a hint of white, lemon curd, sour apple, beeswax, saline, vanilla, cream, honeysuckle, cedar, cool mountain stream and crushed rocks. Excellent concentration, layers upon layers of succulent yellow citrus fruit, rich, dense and opulent, excellent balance and precision, bright acidity, strong mineral, and a long concentrated yellow fruit driven finish with a hint of lanoline at the end. A classic rich and generous Raveneau from a ripe and concentrated vintage. Drinking really well. (96 points)
  • 2006 Château Rayas Châteauneuf-du-Pape Reserve - France, RhĂ´ne, Southern RhĂ´ne, Châteauneuf-du-Pape (4/6/2023)
    Beautiful classic Rayas nose displaying sweet ripe red fruit, cherry liqueur, strawberry jam, dry cherry, candied rose petal, strong tobacco, white pepper, root beer, brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg and mineral. Perfectly integrated palate, layers upon layers of decadent red fruit, warm, sweet and round, but also silky and fluid, medium acidity, strong mineral, and a seamless long decadent slightly dry red fruit driven finish with tobacco and cinnamon at the end. This is very expressive and drinking well. (97 points)
  • 2009 Domaine de la RomanĂ©e-Conti Richebourg - France, Burgundy, CĂ´te de Nuits, Richebourg Grand Cru (4/6/2023)
    Intoxicating classic DRC nose displaying perfectly ripe opulent black fruit, blackberry concentrate, black berry liqueur, strong Chinese herbal medicine, rose, stem, sap, roasted coffee bean, exotic incense, smoke, sand crushed rocks. Excellent concentration, layers upon layers of perfectly ripe pure black fruit, rich and opulent but also rich and beautifully detailed, perfect amount of acidity and mineral, and the never ending finish. This is incredibly expressive and drinking perfectly in a youthful way but can easily improve for a couple more decades, gaining sous bois and tertiary notes. (98 points)
  • 1948 Château Lafleur - France, Bordeaux, Libournais, Pomerol (4/6/2023)
    Fully mature nose displaying intense black fruit, blackberry, blackberry liqueur, ink, licorice, bitter chocolate, leather, dark spices and scorched earth. Excellent concentration, nicely layered generous black fruit, still quite dense and rich, perfect amount of acidity and mineral, and a long concentrated black fruit driven finish with a hint of caramel and smoke at the end. This was purchased from Luxembourg in 2007, the height of old Pomerol craze. I paid around $1k, equivalent of 4 Rousseau Chambertins. I am reasonably certain that this is a counterfeit but it is really darn good, showing the fully mature black fruit. The fruit is clearly mature, at least 30 years old. It would be very difficult to identify as “fake” if served when people are inebriate. My educated guess is that this is made by H. Rodenstock. (94 points)
  • 2012 Scarecrow Cabernet Sauvignon - USA, California, Napa Valley, Rutherford (4/6/2023)
    Expressive nose displaying hedonistic black fruit, blackberry liqueur, crème de cassis, licorice, milk chocolate, cab floral dust, lead pencil, vanilla/oak, caramel and mineral. Exceptional concentration, layers upon layers of intense black fruit, rich and unctuous, perfect amount of acidity and mineral, and a long opulent concentrated black fruit driven finish with ink and milk chocolate at the end. This is drinking incredibly well. (97 points)
  • 2019 Domaine Coffinet-Duvernay Bâtard-Montrachet - France, Burgundy, CĂ´te de Beaune, Bâtard-Montrachet Grand Cru (4/6/2023)
    Expressive nose displaying pure white and yellow fruit, pear, white peach, apple, lemon curd, lemon, a hint of flint, white flowers, spicy spices and crushed rocks. Excellent concentration, very finely layered pure white and yellow fruit, cool and elegant, bright acidity, very fine mineral, and a seamless long pure white fruit driven finish. This is very refined Batard, more like Chevalier than Batard. (96 points)

I assume they were corkage friendly, do you remember the fee? We are headed there in June and sounds like a great spot.


Well done Kevin. Not sure what the Scarecrow was doing there!

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My parents live in Bluffton so I know where I’m eating next time I visit.

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Hell of a meal - Great lineup, thanks for sharing!

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Nice, Kevin. And good to know. I Was just in Bluffton a few weeks back and ate at Farm- a few doors down. Also very good.
PSA to others- If you ever find yourself on Hilton Head or surroundings- make the short drive to Bluffton for better eating, drinking, coffee, etc. Cool little area.
Burnt Church Distillery in town is a good hang as well.


I have a home in Beaufort and will visit Bluffton often. Could not agree more about the Farm, The Bluffton Room and Burnt Church Distillery. If you are in the area, all worth a visit and as I recall, corkage was quite reasonable.

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I am not sure but the owners are winos too. It was one of the best duck dishes I had in awhile.


We all took five to six bottles down to SC. Clearly, that wasn’t my contribution. :grin:

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I wholeheartedly agree. It is a small quaint town with a lot of excellent restaurants. I was surprised by the super affluent vibe!


Lots of boomers from the NE and elsewhere are retiring to Hilton Head, Savannah (see The Landings), etc. I know it is making housing prices go up a great deal in Savannah. Plus, this is making a lot of money for certain natives of the area. Bluffton is very close to Hilton Head and I guess must be benefitting from all of this. Beautiful area from around Charleston all the way through coastal Georgia (Savannah, Sea Island, Jekel Island, St. Simon’s Island) down through northern Florida along the coast (like Amelia Island, for example).

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I gotta tell you that restaurant sounds fantastic, I’m definitely putting it on my list. I go to the Low Country often. Howard is right, this is a phenomenal area to retire.

It wasn’t a bad place to grow up either. My family moved to HH in 1979 when I was 8. It’s a lot different now.

Interesting. I grew up in Savannah and would go up to HH once or twice a year. Except for new things going up, never noticed that much changing in terms of look and feel - always has been beautiful and sort of majestic. I now go there only once every few years so maybe I have lost track, but how is it a lot different now? Has it really expanded beyond the island to places like Bluffton, which used to be really sleepy when we drove through it in the 60s and 70s.

The whole area is booming

When we moved to HH there was literally only one stoplight, about 10K residents year round and 40K including tourists during the season. I rode my bike everywhere and we went to the beach every day of the summer. There was no cross island expressway and it was a swing bridge. It’s quite built up now and it’s a hassle to park anywhere and go to the beach. Better restaurants now but so many people.

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(Apologies for ongoing drift - had to put this somewhere!) Another endorsement of Farm in Bluffton - fantastic meal last night. It would be among the restaurants i love to visit if it were in Atlanta. Wine list was not bad, but the cocktails seemed a better choice and the beer list almost got me (a few from Edmunds Oast). For Atlanta folks, I’d compare it somewhere between a slightly more conservative Deer and Dove, and a more adventurous Miller Union, given its focus on good local ingredients and general “southern-ness” without boundaries. The skillet cornbread is not to miss.


Oh, yeah, that cornbread is fantastic! Glad you enjoyed.

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I must read too much political news, because I keep reading this thread title as “Buffoon Room.”