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When I lived in South Carolina, I loved taking weekend trips to Charleston. On these trips, my favorite memories almost always revolved around food.
Charleston is a foodie city. You won’t have to look too hard to find world-class southern cuisine, fresh seafood, mouthwatering BBQ, or a brunch place with biscuits so good the line wraps around the block.
To help you plan your own culinary adventure in the Holy City, here are fifteen of the best restaurants in Charleston, South Carolina you won’t want to miss.
15 Best Restaurants in Charleston, South Carolina
From fine dining to quirky breakfast spots, you won’t have to look too hard to find incredible places to eat in Charleston, SC.
Eli’s Table Charleston
Located downtown near Charleston City Hall, Eli’s Table is known for their upscale lowcountry cuisine. They’re open all day and even have an outdoor seating area for enjoying the warm southern weather.
I’ve eaten at Eli’s Table for both brunch and dinner, and you really can’t go wrong either way. The dinner menu has dishes like smoked gouda fondu, vegetable risotto, catch of the day, fried brussel sprouts, and duck and waffles.
At brunch, Eli’s table is the perfect place to try crab cakes, shrimp and grits, wild mushroom omelets, and pickled beets salad. Make sure to grab an order of beignets and anything involving fried green tomatoes.
Eli’s Table Charleston hours: Eli’s Table is open Sunday through Thursday from 9:00am until 10:00pm and Friday through Saturday from 9:00am to 11:00pm.
- Website: www.elistable.com
- Contact: 843-405-5115
- Address: 129 Meeting St, Charleston, SC 2940
To celebrate a special occasion or enjoy a fancy night out in historic downtown Charleston, FIG is a local favorite for fine dining. FIG has won the James Beard Award for Outstanding Restaurant, Best Chef in the Southeast, and Wine Program, and they’re known for offering exciting seasonal dishes in a warm, elegant setting.
The menu changes daily and features plates made from local ingredients, like Ricotta Gnocchi alla Bolognese, Porchetta Tonnato, and Lowcountry Bourride with shrimp and mussels.
FIG Charleston hours: FIG is open Tuesday through Saturday from 5:00pm until 10:30pm.
- Website: www.eatatfig.com
- Contact: 843-805-5900
- Address: 232 Meeting Street Charleston, SC 29401
Build in a historical home that dates back to the late nineteenth century and named after a beloved local dog, Poogan’s Porch has been serving up southern classics since the 1970s.
Start your meal with small plates like cornmeal fried pickled okra, pimento cheese fritters, mac and cheese, and my personal favorite, fried green tomatoes. For your main, choose from popular dishes like bone-in fried chicken, sweat tea glazed salmon, or chicken fried pork chops.
Poogan’s Porch Charleston hours: Poogan’s Porch is open every day from 9:00am until 3:00pm for brunch and 4:30pm until 9:30pm for dinner.
- Website: www.poogansporch.com
- Contact: 843-577-2337
- Address: 72 Queen St, Charleston, SC 29401
Searching for a charming French bistro in Charleston? Maison is the place to be for incredible French dishes like Foie Gras, Burgundy Escargot, and Raclette Brûlée. Guest reviews rave about the Monk fish and dessert options, but it’s a good idea to make a reservation ahead of time since the space is cozy.
Maison Charleston hours: Maison is open from 4:30pm until 10:00pm Tuesday through Thursday and 4:30 pm until 11:00pm Friday and Saturday.
- Website: www.maisoncharleston.com
- Contact: 843-990-9165
- Address: 708 King Street, Charleston, SC, 29403
Chez Nous serves an exciting selection of classic dishes from France, Italy, and Spain, and the menu changes daily. Every day, guests can choose from two appetizers, two entrees, and two desserts for either lunch or dinner, and the choices vary based on season and what’s locally available.
Across the board, Chez Nous gets excellent reviews for their amazing food and charming atmosphere. To get an idea of what’s being served, head to the drool-worthy Chez Nous Instagram account for daily menus and dishes.
Chez Nous Charleston hours: Chez Nous is open for lunch from 11:30am until 3:00pm and for dinner from 5:30pm until 10:30pm. They’re open every day except for Monday.
- Website: www.cheznouschs.com
- Contact: 843-579-3060
- Address: 6 Payne Court Charleston, SC 29403
The Obstinate Daughter
Little beats having a delicious meal while enjoying the lovely sea breeze, and The Obstinate Daughter offers exactly that. Located just outside Charleston on Sullivan’s Island, the whole restaurant has an eclectic beachy vibe and an delicious menu.
Guests can enjoy southern-style seafood, pasta, and wood-fired pizza, all of which are sourced from local farmers. The Obstinate Daughter even has a Green Restaurant Certification, thanks to their focus on sustainability.
The Obstinate Daughter Charleston hours: The Obstinate Daughter is open from 11:00am until 10:00pm Monday through Thursday, 11:00am until 11:00pm on Friday, 10:00am until 11:00pm on Saturday, and 10:00am until 10:00pm on Sunday.
- Website: www.theobstinatedaughter.com
- Contact: 843-416-5020
- Address: 2063 Middle Street Sullivans Island, SC 29483
Head to Husk on Queen Street for unforgettable southern dishes like pimento cheese, smoked pork ribs, fried chicken, and pastrami-glazed swordfish. The menu changes with the seasons, and you can visit for dinner every day of the week and brunch on weekends.
The Husk restaurant was built inside a historical building that dates back to the late 19th century, and you can also grab a drink at the next-door bar and patio area.
Husk Charleston hours: Husk is open from 5:00pm until 10:00pm Monday through Thursday and 5:00pm until 11:00pm on Friday.
On Saturday, they’re open for brunch from 10:00am until 2:00pm and dinner from 5:00pm until 11:00pm. On Sunday, they’re open for brunch from 10:00am until 2:00pm and dinner from 5:00pm until 10:00pm.
- Website: www.huskrestaurant.com
- Contact: 843-577-2500
- Address: 76 Queen St Charleston, SC 29401
Xiao Bao Biscuit
A favorite among locals with casual indoor and outdoor seating, Xiao Bao Biscuit offers amazing Asian fusion dishes like dumplings, bao buns, curry, and okonomiyaki.
The charming Charleston restaurant is located in a converted gas station on Spring Street, and reviews highlight knowledgeable staff and laid-back atmosphere. Each dish is well balanced and made with love, giving your taste buds a memorable experience.
Xiao Bao Biscuit Charleston hours: Xiao Bao Biscuit is open from 11:00am until 10:00pm Monday through Saturday. They’re closed Sunday.
- Website: www.xiaobaobiscuit.com
- Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Address: 224 Rutledge Ave, Charleston, SC 29403
The Vicious Biscuit is a family business whose goal is to provide you with the best brunch experience possible.
Choose from over a dozen award-winning buttermilk biscuits with toppings like fried green tomatoes and pimento cheese, shrimp and grits, slow roasted pork, and fried chicken, and make sure to grab an order of beignets to top it all off.
Vicious Biscuit Charleston hours: Vicious Biscuit is open from 7:00am until 3:00pm Monday through Friday and 8:00am until 3:00pm Saturday and Sunday.
- Website: www.viciousbiscuit.com
- Contact: 843-388-7362
- Address: 409 W Coleman Blvd, Mt Pleasant, SC 29464
Charleston Crab House
The Charleston Crab House has been a staple seafood restaurant in the city for almost 30 years, and their downtown location is centrally located among Charleston’s beautiful historic buildings.
As you can probably guess from the name, crab is the house speciality, but you can also choose from dozens of seafood dishes like she crab soup, chilled fresh oysters, grilled shirmp, and sea scallops.
When we ate here, the hush puppies were definitely a crowd pleaser. I’m not a huge seafood person myself, but the fried green tomatoes and southern style veggie sides were more than enough to keep me happy.
Charleston Crab House hours: Charleston Crab House is open from 11:30am until 9:00pm Monday through Thursday. It’s open 11:30am until 9:30pm on Friday, 11:00am until 9:30pm on Saturday, and 11:00am until 9:00pm on Sunday.
- Website: www.charlestoncrabhouse.com
- Contact: 843-795-1963
- Address: 41 S Market St, Charleston, SC 29401
Rodney Scott BBQ
Meat lovers, Rodney Scott’s bbq is your dream restaurant and you’ll know why once you get close enough to smell the barbecue pit. Established in 2017, Rodney Scott and his team are passionate about slow, intentional cooking through traditional techniques. Today, they have restaurants in Atlanta and Alabama in addition to their Charleston location.
Guest reviews rave about the flavorful pulled pork, brisket, potato salad, and mac & cheese. Remember to save room for the banana pudding for dessert.
Rodney Scott’s BBQ Charleston hours: Rodney Scott’s Barbecue is open from 11:00am until 9:00pm each day.
- Website: www.rodneyscottsbbq.com
- Contact: 843-990-9535
- Address: 1011 King Street Charleston, SC 29403
Located in downtown Charleston near Market Street, Queology is a friendly barbecue restaurant that’s combines classic barbecue meats with all your favorite comfort foods.
Queology serves traditional smoked meat dishes as well as tacos, sandwiches, nachos, mozzarella sticks, and jalapeño poppers. With an outdoor patio and local beers on tap, you may not want to leave.
Queology Charleston hours: Queology is open from 11:00am until 10:00pm Monday through Thursday and 11:00am until 11:00pm Friday and Saturday.
- Website: www.queology.com
- Contact: 843-958-8500
- Address: 6 N Market St, Charleston, SC 29401
Toast has been acclaimed by The New York Times magazine as a “must eat” restaurant in Charleston and in 2021, it was ranked the 23rd best brunch spot in the USA, according to TripAdvisor. When you try it for yourself, you will understand that the reputation is well earned.
Stop by for all day breakfast, brunch, lunch, or dinner, and enjoy dishes like stuffed French toast, shrimp and grits, fried green tomato BLTs, and sweet tea glazed fried chicken. There’s also live music and mimosas, so what are you waiting for?
Toast All Day Charleston Hours: Toast is open from 6:00am until 3:00pm every day.
- Website: www.toastallday.com
- Contact: 843-534-0043
- Address: 155 Meeting Street Charleston, SC 29401
If you’re in the mood for pizza, you can’t miss D’Allesandro’s on St. Philip Street. My friends and I have eaten here about a million times over the years, and I highly recommend one of their amazing hand-tossed pizzas or calzones.
With an impressive beer list and a comfortable, relaxed atmosphere, D’Allesandro’s is one of my favorite Charleston restaurants for a casual bite with friends after a long day of exploring the city.
D’Allesandro’s Charleston hours: D’Allesandro’s is open from 11:00am until 11:00pm Sunday through Thursday and 11:00am until midnight on Friday and Saturday.
- Website: www.dalspizza.com
- Contact: 843-853-6337
- Address: 229 St Philip St, Charleston, SC 29403
Bay Street Biergarten
Bay Street Biergarten combines traditional German pub culture with the unique southern charms of Charleston. If you like fusion cuisine, it’s the best place to try tasty combinations like schnitzel and grits, Bavarian pretzels, German pulled pork sandwiches, and pretzel bread pudding.
With a beautiful interior space, TV screens for watching games, and an an outdoor patio area that’s dog friendly, Bay Street Biergarten has thought of everything.
Bay Street Biergarten Charleston hours: Stop by Bay Street Biergarten Wednesday through Sunday from 11:00am to midnight.
- Website: www.baystreetbiergarten.com
- Contact: 843-266-2437
- Address: 549 E Bay St, Charleston, SC 29403
Charleston Food Tour
If you’d like to sample a wide variety of southern cuisine with a knowledgable guide, a food tour is a great way to spend the afternoon. This Charleston Food Tour has over 400 five-star reviews and previous guests recommend going early in your trip so you can revisit your favorite stops.
Final Thoughts: Best Charleston, SC Restaurants
Charleston’s best restaurants are the perfect way to fuel up for a memorable trip. For more Charleston and Southern USA travel guides, check out the posts below.