Charleston is known the world over for its history, its natural beauty, its culture and its people. And it is also quickly being recognized as the place to please your palette. That is absolutely true in the eyes of this self-proclaimed judge of all things delicious. The good news is that you don’t have to break the bank or often times, even make reservations to enjoy many of these unique local culinary delights.
Here we go:
- The Fried Oyster Mac & Cheese at the Morgan Creek Grill.
There’s not much better than Southern fried oysters. And who doesn’t love homemade mac and cheese? Magic happens when oysters, cavatappi and a blend of three cheeses are enjoyed overlooking the water in nearby Isle of Palms.
- The Blackened Ahi Rare Tuna BLT at Laura Albert’s Tasteful Options.
It’s certainly worth a trip to beautiful Daniel Island if only to savor this remarkable sandwich and the Asian slaw side at what has quickly become a local favorite eatery and wine shop. Delicious happens when a mother and daughter team up.
- USDA Prime Filet Foie Gras at Grill 225 in the Old Market.
Imagine filet mignon, sliced foie gras with truffled Béarnaise, Parmesan cheese and fig demi-glace. A classic meal. A classic location. Classic service. Who can have a beef with that?
- Coq Au Vin from the Fat Hen on John’s Island.
French Lowcountry cuisine at its best. A half local chicken- red wine braised with bacon, roasted sweet potato, carrots, kale, mushrooms, parsnips and green onions from a chef-owned dining spot committed to its local farm to table roots.
- The Lowcountry Platter at Hyman’s Seafood in Downtown Charleston.
Crispy-fried flounder, oysters and shrimp with your choice of side. It’s a can’t miss. Splurge for the extra side. Go for the fed rice and the succotash! Savor what generations of seafood masters can create firsthand.
- A Southern Red Velvet Cupcake from Cupcake DownSouth on King Street.
Since each of their more-than-50 flavors featured the finest all-natural ingredients, you might be swayed to go a different way. Not me, though. The red velvet is ridiculously addicting. It’ll be hard to stop at one.
- The Meat Loaf Dinner at Boone Hall Farms.
House ground sirloin blended with onions, peppers and homemade gravy accompanied by your choice of sides. Oh yeah, be sure to pick up some fresh pimento cheese to keep you happy the entire next day. Simple. Delicious. Affordable.
- Broad Street Seafood Pasta from the Charleston Crab House.
Al dente pasta tossed with sautéed shrimp, delicious crabmeat, sweet mussels in a tomato basil sauce…Rome meets Charleston in a dish that promises to please the discerning palette. The toughest choice? On the water in James Island or downtown in the Historic Market.
- The Charleston Crunch Roll from Ichiban Steak House and Asian Fusion in West Ashley.
Raw, hot and spicy may not exactly describe your average day in Charleston, but it succinctly describes this delicious creation. Inside: Soft shell crab, shrimp tempura, cucumber, avocado and spicy tuna with crunchy flakes. Outside: Eel sauce, spicy mayo with mango sauce. Wow!
- Strawberry Chocolate Truffle Cake from Saffron Bakery.
It’s worth the 24-hour call ahead time to discover multi-layer happiness. Two layers of chocolate, one layer of chocolate truffle, one later of chocolate mousses, a layer of chocolate mousse and strawberry filling. This awe-inspiring cake to-go, from a Downtown Charleston institution, is topped off with chocolate ganache icing and chocolate dipped strawberries. Sweet!
What are you waiting for? Time to hit the list!