Charleston is known as a culinary capital, and for a good reason. Charleston eateries spare no expense when it comes to dishing out unforgettable dining experiences. Whether you’re looking for a hearty meal complete with a juicy steak or international fare inspired by flavors from around the globe, the Holy City’s restaurants represent the diversity + uniqueness of the Charleston culinary community. While there is no shortage of delicious dining spots, we’ve picked a few of our favorites to add to your list.
For the Steak Savant: Oak Steakhouse
Found on Broad Street, Oak Steakhouse is a quintessential American steakhouse. Executive chef Mark Keiser serves carefully prepared local and regional dishes paired with a masterfully curated selection of wines. Oak’s pine floors and fireplaces offer a cozy + intimate setting to enjoy a special evening with to-die-for food.
For a Boss Burger: The Macintosh
James Beard-nominated chef Jeremiah Bacon has created a sultry restaurant rooted in Southern tradition. With a menu featuring locally-sourced produce, you’ll find modern American cuisine that is both recognizable + innovative. And you can’t go to The Macintosh without ordering their burger. Trust us, you won’t regret it.
For Superb Sushi: O-Ku
Fusing together traditional Asian cuisine + southern influences, the team at O-Ku has expertly crafted a menu featuring unique ingredients presented in beautiful + sophisticated ways. You will find dishes featuring fish sourced from some of the world’s most sought-after waterways, providing the foundation for an unforgettable dining experience.
For Impressive Italian: Indaco
Wood-fired pizzas + handmade pastas are only the tip of the iceberg at upper King Street gem, Indaco. Executive chef Michael Holler has prepared a rustic Italian menu best-enjoyed family-style at one of the restaurant’s community tables. In between bites, you can sip on Italian varietals or a Negroni on tap (we mean, c’mon) for a meal even your Italian grandmother couldn’t complain about.
For the Cocktail Connoisseur: The Cocktail Club
Seemingly transported straight from the streets of New York City, The Cocktail Club offers a sexy lounge space to enjoy a night out, away from the hustle-and-bustle of King Street. You’ll enjoy a vast list of carefully-crafted cocktails prepared by true libation pros for a night of good drinks + great times. Pro Tip: Order the popcorn. You won’t regret it.
For the Lively Locavore: FIG
Helmed by James Beard Award-winning chef Mike Lata + executive chef Jason Stanhope, FIG has earned its status as a Charleston staple, serving up delicious dishes that are both creative + comforting. The restaurant’s wine program, led by James Beard Award winner Morgan Calcote, is specially curated to create a well-rounded meal full of heart + soul. Our advice: Snag a seat at the bar, you won’t regret it.
For Sensational Seafood: The Ordinary
The Ordinary is a charming Southern seafood hall delivering a menu inspired by the Lowcountry’s coast. Located in an old bank, the team at The Ordinary blends unforgettable food with impeccable service to produce a high energy + memorable dining experience. Their impressive Seafood Tower is the stuff of dreams, so do yourself a favor and make sure it finds a way to your table.
For Hip Half Shells: The Darling Oyster Bar
A vintage-inspired setting meets modern cuisine at King Street eatery, The Darling Oyster Bar. Fresh seafood takes center stage on a menu inspired by classic dishes with a flair for new flavor. Grab a seat at the raw bar or settle into one of the restaurant’s green-colored booths for a flavorful + fun dining experience. Don’t forget Sunday brunch, either!
For Homegrown Hospitality: The Park Cafe
Forget about complicated cuisine and menus that leave you scratching your head. At The Park Cafe, each dish is simple, yet flavorful, leaning heavily into the idea of farm-to-table. Even better? The recently-renovated dining room is filled with natural light, providing the perfect atmosphere to enjoy a cozy + comfortable meal with friends.
For Top-Notch Tiki: Wiki Wiki Sandbar
Prepare yourself for some serious island vibes at this Folly Beach outpost. From the first step you take in Wiki Wiki Sandbar, you’ll feel like you’ve been transported to the beaches of the South Pacific. (There’s even a giant octopus hanging from the ceiling!) The menu features tropical-inspired treasures, including pupu platters and the not-to-be-missed Spam sliders. Wash your meal down with a tiki cocktail and kick back for an afternoon in paradise.
For a Flavorful Fiesta: Taco Boy
With locations in downtown Charleston, Folly Beach, and Summerville, you’re never too far from this colorful eatery. Drawing inspiration from the flavors of Mexico, you’ll find fun + modern takes on the classic taco, including traditional al pastor + carne asada options and funky favorites like the fried chicken or kimchi beef tacos. And no trip to Taco Boy would be complete without their Original Frozen Screwdriver or a tried-and-true margarita.