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DINING – MYRTLE BEACH

Max & Erma's

The place: 1004 Glen Forest Road, Myrtle Beach. Hours: 11a.m.-10 p.m. Sunday-Thursday; 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday. Details: 843-903-1030.

The taste: Max & Erma's gave me lots to like – guilty pleasures, not-so-sinful indulgences and prices that were reasonable. The restaurant's menu is friendly both to vegetarians and meat lovers. The appetizers include barbecue chicken quesadillas, cheese skewers, hand-scooped skins, chicken tenders and nachos grande. However, I skipped the appetizers and decided to go straight to the entrees. The menu includes chicken Parmesan, Cajun shrimp and pasta, lemon herb Alaskan halibut, a black bean veggie burger, Southern chicken salad and numerous other items. I went with the Caribbean chicken. The lunch portion came with a grilled, marinated chicken breast with tropical fruit salsa on top. The dish comes with herb rice and steamed buttered broccoli. The lunch was flavorful and filling. I also sampled the tortilla soup and the bacon and cheddar potato soup. Both were excellent and hearty. For dessert, I ordered cookies. The chocolate chip and the white chocolate macadamia nut cookies were wonderful. Other desserts include banana cream pie, which is made from scratch.

To drink: Nonalcoholic beverages include watermelon fizz (Sprite with a splash of watermelon) and peach tea. The gourmet sodas and teas are $2.99, while frozen treats are $3.59. Draft beer starts at $3.25 (prices are lower during happy hour). Wine by the glass ranges from $4.50 to $8.75.

The price: Entrees begin at $9.59; sandwiches start at $7.49. The 10-ounce gourmet burgers are $7.99 to $11.59. Johanna Wilson, The Sun-News

PARTYING – NORTH MYRTLE BEACH

Filets

The place: 2120 Sea Mountain Highway, North Myrtle Beach. Hours: 4-9 or 10 p.m. daily. Details: 843-280-5200.

The vibe: Filets offers a casual dining experience with a variety of dishes. Dine inside the main restaurant where there are great views of the waterway or sit outside on the water if the weather is nice. There is a lot of seating outside, and there's also a tiki bar where you can enjoy appetizers and drinks.

The drink/taste: Filets offers one of the best happy hour deals around: from 4 to 7 p.m. daily, all appetizers, except for soups and salads, are half-price. Drink specials include $2.75 house liquor, $2.35 house wine and 50 cents off all domestic bottles. No beers on tap are included in the happy hour specials. The menu offers a variety of steaks, seafood, salads, sandwiches and appetizers. Filets also has a large sushi menu. If you're in the mood for just a few pieces of sushi or want to have it as your main entree, Filets is the place to go. You can order a sushi dinner that includes a salad and more than 12 pieces of sushi. You can order up to three different types of sushi as well. There is enough in this order to share.

The crowd: Mostly 30s and older, with a few 20-somethings mixed in. Several couples were dining together, but there didn't seem to be any young children.

Overheard: “He can drink faster than I can.” Anne-Kathryn Flanagan, The Sun-News

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