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On Charleston: Where am I supposed to go first?!

A list of the most buzzworthy dining establishments in Charleston.

As you may or may not be aware, I just moved to Charleston, South Carolina. Only part of the reason is the phenomenal food. Like 95%. It seemed that each consecutive trip to Charleston was yeilding a longer and longer list of places I wanted to eat at. I thought moving here might help to shorten my list, but actually it just got longer. So here, in no particular order, is a list of places: Places to Taste: PTT:  

  1. Hugers - My friend Joey says it's the best Soul Food
  2. The Glass Onion- West Ashley - I can't tell you the number of times I have heard they are good. Open Lunch and Dinner.
  3. Nirlep Indian Restaurant- A local cheesemaker said this is pretty darn good. Open Lunch and Dinner, Closed Monday.
  4. Zen Asian Fusion - Joey Approved, and The Local Palate also wrote them up 
  5. Tattoed Moose - I like the atmosphere. Food sounds great. I've heard 98% great reviews
  6. Muse - TLP Rec.
  7. Bin 152 - McCrady's Staff Approved
  8. Martha Lou's Kitchen - Soul Food - Searching for Fried Chicken 
  9. NextDoor - Only been once, wanting to return. It's another Ben Berryhill place (see Red Drum Chef)
  10. Avondale Wine & Cheese - I love cheese. 'nuf said.
  11. Carolina's Restaurant - Next door to CBX, this is one of the oldest restaurants in SC. I'm just curious
  12. O-Ku Sushi- Chef Sean Park has gotten a lot of recognition for his talents. This is part of the Indigo Road company. They also own The MacIntosh, Oak Steakhouse, and Cocktail Club
  13. Oak Steakhouse- It looks pricey but again it's Indigo Road
  14. Eli's Table - Walked past here on my way to dinner at HUSK and it looked cool. Still new in town. Breakfast, lunch, dinner.
  15. Tristan- Someone told me this was goos last year. The reviews are all great. Website is douchy but maybe I'll go if someone pays for it. Chef worked for Penninsula Grill so must be pretty good. 
  16. The Vegetable Bin- Local Produce
  17. The Grocery - A newer place recommended by the guys at CBX who never steer me wrong. I keep hearing it in conversations all over town
  18. Five Loaves Cafe - Another McCrady's staff suggestion
  19. 82 Queen - I keep hearing that they have the best sushi in town and I believe they serve at least partial sushi menu till 12am! 
  20. Tattooed Moose- I hear mostly good things. Food sounds good. I like the atmosphere. Nice staff. Haven't eaten here but had a drink. 
  21. Bull Street Gourmet and Market - Good curb appeal brought me in for a quick run through but I didn't have time to eat. They have two locations in town and recently (i'm guessing) franchised to Durham, NC
  22. The Royal American - This is mostly a place to hang and have drinks. They only have burgers and chili on the menu. Apparently late night drinks are $3, $2 canned beers (including Oskar Blues and Westbrook??), and $2.50 draft. Cool building, and any place with Schlitz and Allagash on the menu is good in my book. 
  23. The Gin Joint - I came here as dd after dinner so I got nothing but atmosphere and some candied ginger out of it. Want to try it again. Heard iffy things about the food, but I still think it's worth a try
  24. Carter's Kitchen- While writing this list Carter's popped up, its closer to my living quarters in Mount Pleasant and it gets great reviews
  25. Boulevard Diner - It's been there FOREVER and my parents said it was good on a recent visit
  26. Oriental Garden - People in the biz say this is the best sushi joint in town. We shall see. It's in Mount P AND there is a drive thru. Written up in Charleston Magazine
  27. H & L Market - I've been for groceries, now I need to go for the Pho fix
  28. Charlie's Grocery - A friend in the food biz said this is authentic Middle Eastern food. I'm in.
  29. Patat Spot Friet and Falafel - It's in the name 
  30. La Fourchette - Local Suggestion
  31. Sermet's Downtown and Daniel Island - Recently redesigned downtown. It's been in town for a long time and I never noticed it. McCrady's staff approved. 
  32. High Thyme- Sullivan's Island gets great reviews from local regulars
  33. The Co-OP - Gourmet Grocery and Deli on Sullivan's

Places to Return: PTR: (you can't judge a place, even if its gets high marks, on one visit, or if it's opened within the last 6 months)

  1. Two Boroughs Larder - The guys at CBX pointed us here. I want to go again. I'd give it a 75/100.
  2. Butcher & Bee - Woah, yummy. Menu changes regularly. Dying to return. Kinda $$$. Open all hours.
  3. The Macintosh - Dually impressed. Must try again and again
  4. Taco Mamacita - Great prices, not really my thing, but no reason to avoid it
  5. The Fat Hen - Haven't been in at least two years
  6. F.I.G - Been too long. Opening a new place i need to check out.
  7. Closed for Business- The Scotch Egg just had to exist to make me happy, now I need to try something other than beer
  8. Social - It's a wine bar. I don't like how their menu is set up. The food was pricey but really good. The server was not great and the ceiling dripped water on my food. When I told the server she sort of shrugged and then put my food under the drip even though I was clearly avoiding that spot. Whatever the chef is new-ish so I'll try again. 
  9. Atlanticville- Sullivan's Island. I had a bad experience here once, which I think had nothing to do with their food or quality, I was just developing an allergy to some thai ingredients. Haven't been back since. Want to try again. 
  10. Basically everywhere in Mount Pleasant. I can hardly remember food at these places

Breweries to Tour: BTT:

  1. Holy City 
  2. COAST
  3. Palmetto 

 Places I've Been: PIB:  ( I may have next to no money but I'm still trying to fight the good fight. These are places I've made it too since I got into town in April)

  1. Coleman Public House - Oh man, you need to go here. It's great. Moules Frites. 
  2. Street Hero - My favorite stall at the Marion Square Farmer's Market. Interview and more info on the way soon. GO HERE. SERIOUSLY
  3. The Glass Onion - Friendly helpful staff, the scallops and butter beans were good, I would have liked another scallop for the price, or an extra side or something. The bean/corn salad was tasty though. Cornbread was really strange. It was spongy not cakey and really dense. I did not like the cornbread. I'll go back to try the chicken liver po' boys which seem to be really popular with the guests. Although, the staff said they don't eat them. They all suggested the meatloaf po' boy, risotto, and scallops. 
  4. Lost Dog Cafe - This is a brunch spot on Folly. I love it. 
  5. Gaulart & Maliclet- I won't pretend to pronounce this place. Cool old lunch counter. Need to try more than the Croque Monsieur but I enjoy the vibe here. Suggested by Page at Thomas Creek Brewery
  6. NextDoor - Friendly staff, great wine and beer list. Interesting menu. Not the best food I've ever had. The sweetbreads ROCKED but the pasta was a little underwhelming. Very interested in going back.
  7. The Griffon - Great bar food, dive-y atmosphere. Perfect spot to kick back and play darts. 
  8. Cafe Medley - Coffee, Breakfast Sandwiches, Ice Cream, Fresh Local Pastries, Wine Tastings, Beer Floats
  9. Ali Baba Mediterranean Deli on Daniel Island - Deli style it is. Great it ain't
  10. Wasabi Daniel Island - Supposedly the better one. Really pricey, even their happy house was $$$. Service was TERRIBLE. The poor woman was offering to be nice but she kept forgetting things and ringing things up wrong and pouring water in a martini. Just generally weird mistakes.

Is this list long enough? Guh.  Check out my Yelp! profile and bookmarks for a more interactive way to see these spots, it's all mappy and such. Anyone looking to treat a poor girl to dinner just email me. robin@goodforthepalate.com.  I'm serious. 

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Greg Hambrick May 23, 2012 at 02:11 AM
Martha Lou's Kitchen? Robin, you have been doing your homework! Welcome to Charleston.

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