North is a direction, south is a lifestyle.
Charleston is the epitome of Southern charm. Quaint streets lined with sprawling, pastel homes and palm trees. Some of the nicest people I’ve ever met. And, seriously good eats.
Last spring, I flew to Charleston for a long weekend with friends where our main objectives were to wander as much as possible, and indulge in some great Southern cooking.
We were, without a doubt, successful. The weekend was packed with great eats, delicious cocktails and fun experiences learning more about this southern city. I’ve had a lot of people reach out recently for top food/drink recos as a result of heading to Charleston for a bachelor/bachelorette party or fun weekend getaway.
These are the places I’d unquestionably go back the next time I’m in Charleston.
Top Picks for Coffee:
- Black Tap Coffee: Loved this place so much, we came back twice. Cold brew is great, but the coffee cocktails were my favorite thing on the menu. Recommend trying the Black Julep- espresso, cold brew, mint and honey
- Kudu Coffee: Liked the vibe of this place a lot, plenty of indoor and outdoor garden seating
- Tricera Coffee: Coffee & dinosaurs? Two of my favorite things! Tricera’s close-location to King Street makes it a good place to stop if you need a mid-afternoon pick-me-up from shopping/wandering
Top Picks for Drinks:
- The Gin Joint: One of my favorite cocktail bars in Charleston, this place revamps their menu seasonally. We came a week after they introduced the spring menu and weren’t disappointed. If you’re there when the Studmuffin (Charleston Madeira, Hoodoo Chicory Liqueur, St. George Coffee Liqueur, Amaro Sibilla, Sumac Bay Leaf Ice Cubes) is on the menu, I highly recommend ordering it
- Proof: Another one of my favorite bars in Charleston. They have a great happy hour, but also a solid cocktail menu. Grab a seat at the bar and work your way through their drink list- my favorite one: the Martinez, served with a cheese slice garnish
- The Belmont: Cozy bar with old black and white movies playing on the side wall
- The Griffin: A dive located near HUSK, it’s been a local staple for 20+ years
Top Picks for Eats:
- HUSK: Unable to get a dinner reservation here, we came for lunch on our first day in Charleston. Everything we tried was delicious. Using only ingredients from the south, HUSK nails hearty home cooking
- Waiting for a table? Grab a drink at The bar at HUSK. They carry an outstanding selection of bourbon and whiskey. I’m a big Madeira fan and appreciated the ones they have on the menu here
- Hominy Grill: Located in a historic Charleston single house, Hominy Grill feels as though it has been open for generations. It’s southern food perfection, you have to try the shrimp and cheese grits
- Callie’s Hot Little Biscuit: Is there anything better than bacon, egg and pimento cheese on a fresh baked biscuit for breakfast?