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Second Empire Restaurant Review: Among the most elegant restaurants in the city, Second Empire occupies a restored “Second Empire Victorian” mansion. Refined details include an ornate hand-carved staircase and white linen-draped tables set with Christofle and Villeroy & Boch, and chef Daniel Schurr lives up to the high expectations the atmosphere suggests. His menu changes frequently, offering such starters as a butternut squash and braised duck leg salad that includes roasted golden beets and kohlrabi, and a cioppino made with coastal Carolina shrimp, clams, scallops and other seasonal fish. Richness imbues the main dishes as well. Consider the rack of pork with stone-ground grits and cabbage galette and wild mushroom purée; or fried Georgia quail with sweet potato purée. Dinner for two will set you back $150 or more, depending on how much the first-rate wine list inspires you to extravagance. Downstairs in the lower level, a more low-key experience in the less formal Tavern offers simpler fare ranging from risotto to pan-fried mountain trout.