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Charleston’s Top Restaurants

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A city built on seafood and rice, Charleston remains focused on its abundance of local fish and produce, especially as its restaurant scene continues to boom. This once sleepy Southern town is now an international dining destination.
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464 N Nassau St, Charleston, SC 29403, USA
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It seems criminal that what many consider the best barbecue in Charleston comes from a Texas pit-master, but such is the nature of a global food scene in a thriving culinary city. John Lewis arrived in town with focus and intention, constructing...
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3001, 19 Broad St, Charleston, SC 29401, USA
A hole-in-the-wall bakery is not where you’d expect to find excellent oysters, rosé on tap, and food from one of the city’s rising-star chefs, but Bar Normandy made its name by bucking all preconceived notions of a...
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1503 King St, Charleston, SC 29405, USA
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You’ll need a car to get to Workshop, but the industrial food hall is more than worth the drive to the Neck area. Housed in a Silicon Valley–esque complex of start-up office spaces, the spot offers a myriad of dining options,...
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544 King St, Charleston, SC 29403, USA
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A two-story dining room with an always-packed raw bar, The Ordinary serves some of the South’s best seafood. Here, chef Mike Lata dishes up must-try options like a seafood tower, crab toast, fish chowder, and triggerfish with fingerling...
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224 Rutledge Ave, Charleston, SC 29403, USA
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XBB, as locals call it, occupies a remodeled and brightly furnished former gas station in the Elliotborough neighborhood. Catering to its surfer clientele with Nicaraguan beer, the spot also offers a constantly changing menu of authentic Asian...
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76 Queen St, Charleston, SC 29401, USA
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At this Charleston hit, James Beard Award–winning chef Sean Brock reinterprets traditional Southern dishes with a steadfast commitment to local and regional ingredients—the restaurant even has its own garden. Constantly changing, the...
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207 Rutledge Ave, Charleston, SC 29403, USA
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For those seeking a true taste of Charleston, it’s hard to recommend anywhere better than Hominy Grill. You’ll likely have to wait for a table, but just grab a drink in the front courtyard until it’s your turn to sit. Meals...
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232 Meeting St, Charleston, SC 29401, USA
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It’s a big deal when a chef wins a James Beard Award for “Best Chef: Southeast.” It’s an even bigger deal when that chef’s successor wins the same award a few years later, but that’s exactly what happened at...
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2 Unity Alley, Charleston, SC 29401, USA
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The restaurant where Sean Brock got his start, McCrady’s has a long history as a neighborhood watering hole and pub that goes all the way back to the 1700s. In 2016, however, the cozy building, with its brick interior and homey bar, got a...
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1870 Bowens Island Rd, Charleston, SC 29412, USA
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Few places mean more to Charleston than Bowens Island Restaurant, which has existed in one form or another since 1946. The original building, covered in Sharpie messages signed by diners over the years, burned to the ground in 2006. Current owner...
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698 King St, Charleston, SC 29403, USA
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Leon’s is a meticulously renovated former auto-body shop that's now famous for oysters and fried chicken. Don’t overlook chef Ari Kolender’s shrimp roll, though—lightly dressed with horseradish mayo, it’s served...
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1081 Morrison Dr, Charleston, SC 29403, USA
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This cavernous brewpub has a wide-open kitchen, a long bar, tall communal tables, and a patio shaded by live oaks. If you can, grab a seat at the chef’s counter and watch the team spread creamy aïoli on locally made rye...
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1068 Morrison Dr, Charleston, SC 29403, USA
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This tiny soul food restaurant is a great spot to visit for fried chicken, fried pork chops, and, for the adventurous, fried chitterlings. Don’t let all that deliciousness keep you from trying the stand-out veggies, though, which range from...
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2063 Middle St, Sullivan's Island, SC 29482, USA
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Just blocks from the beach, the Obstinate Daughter focuses on Italian favorites and local food, with a heavy dose of seafood appropriate to its Sullivan’s Island location. The space is nautical without feeling cheesy, featuring walls covered...
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710 King St, Charleston, SC 29403, USA
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When local restaurateurs Brooks Reitz and Tim Mink shut down Saint Alban, Charleston was distraught. They had something different in mind for the space, however, and replaced their airy, all-day café with a cozy steak house straight out of...
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229 St Philip St, Charleston, SC 29403, USA
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In the South, it's quite easy to eat bacon at every meal—it shows up in everything from the Bloody Marys to the brussels sprouts. After several days in Charleston, however, you might need a break from all that meat. Thankfully, the crew...
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6 Payne Ct, Charleston, SC 29403, USA
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Everyone seems to be talking about Chez Nous and, frankly, it’s easy to see why. A meal here feels like dining at your most fashionable friend’s place. The restaurant is tucked away from the main drag in a beautiful Charleston single...
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476 1/2 King St, Charleston, SC 29403, USA
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Callie’s Charleston Biscuits, a mail-order business selling from-scratch biscuits, opened up this counter-service restaurant in 2014. Naturally, biscuits make up a big portion of the menu, with sweet and savory options available...
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616 Meeting St A, Charleston, SC 29403, USA
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Spero focuses on small plates made with local, seasonal produce. The restaurant’s unpretentious vibe belies its sophisticated menu, for which most everything is crafted on-site—including the delicious bread (order the bread-and-butter...
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730 Rutledge Ave, Charleston, SC 29403, USA
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Despite its refined food and atmosphere, the Park Cafe is really a neighborhood spot at heart. It opens up at 7 a.m. on weekdays, dishing out top-notch coffee and avocado toast, and stays open into the evening with great cocktails and a diverse...
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1219 Savannah Hwy, Charleston, SC 29407, USA
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This sweet restaurant in West Ashley serves up all the Southern classics, from fried green tomatoes to pimento cheese and grits, but makes everything with local ingredients. The grits come from nearby Edisto Island, and much of the produce is...