Dining Out in Downtown Charleston

downtown charlestonDowntown Charleston is a dining nirvana. You can find everything from Southern comfort food to the finest French and Japanese cuisine. Following are some of our favorite restaurants.

Cru Café
Quaint Lowcountry Dining $$$$
18 Pinckney Street, Charleston, SC 29401-2006, (843) 534-2434
Lunch and Dinner

Known for its motto, “Comfort Served Daily,” Cru Café features amazing entrees such as Thai Seafood Risotto, Poblano and Mozzarella Fried Chicken, and barbecued beef brisket. Run by famed Le Cordon Bleu Chef John Zucker, Cru Café has been one of Charleston’s top restaurants since its opening in 2002.

Fine Italian Dining $$$
102 North Market Street, Charleston, SC  29401, (843) 722-6393

Voted Charleston’s Best New Restaurant by the City Paper, Mercato is noted for its incredible Italian dishes, such as Veal Picatta, Housemade Potato Gnocchi, and Prosciutto and Arugula Pizza. Mercato’s atmosphere transports you to Italy with its Venetian plaster walls, fine Italian leather seats, and 60-year-old Italian chandelier.

39 Rue de Jean
French $$$
39 John Street, Charleston, SC 29403, (843) 722-8881
Lunch, dinner

According to its website, 39 Rue de Jean is “a refined French café and bar offering the best in classic Brasserie cuisine.” Enjoy delicious wine from France’s finest vineyards as you dine on Trout Beurre Blanc with almond rice pilaf, Lamb Shank with brandied figs, and Duck Confit with goat-cheese potato croquette.

Wasabi of Charleston
Wasabi Sushi and Japanese Fusion Bar $$$
61 State Street, Charleston, SC  29401, (843) 577-5222
Lunch, dinner

With professional chefs trained in Japan, Wasabi of Charleston is quickly becoming the place to go for sushi and fine Japanese cuisine. You’ll have a difficult time deciding what to order with entrees such as Nabe Yaki Udon and Hibachi Steak and Shrimp and over 45 varieties of sushi and sashimi, including tamago (egg custard) and saba (Japanese king mackerel).

Hominy Grill
Southern (excellent for brunch and breakfast) $$ – $$$
207 Rutledge Ave, Charleston, SC 29403-5864, (843) 937-0930
Brunch, Breakfast, Lunch, dinner

For some good old Southern comfort food, go to the nationally acclaimed Hominy Grill. Everything is prepared with locally sourced, fresh ingredients, and you’ll love the hearty breakfast with housemade sausage and hominy grits for breakfast. For brunch, try the salmon potato cakes with poached eggs, and for lunch or dinner, indulge in the Low Country Purloo, rice casserole with ham, sausage, chicken wings, and shrimp.

Which amazing downtown Charleston restaurants have you tried?

Dining Out in The Charleston Area: Mount Pleasant

charleston restaurantsCharleston is famous for its restaurants! From succulent Lowcountry fine dining to zesty Italian bistros, and quaint barbecue hot spots to vibrant Mexican eateries, Charleston truly is a culinary melting pot.

For many of you who are visiting from out of state, you may not be aware that Charleston is segmented into various different areas that include downtown Charleston, Folly Beach, James Island, Johns Island, Mount Pleasant, North Charleston, West Ashley, and Daniel Island (there are a few other neighboring cities, towns, and islands thrown in there, but these are the main ones). Each and every area in Charleston is home to exciting restaurants, cafes, bars, and pubs that naming them all in one blog post would be way too much. This is why we’ve decided to create a series on Charleston restaurants. Each post in the series will focus on a different area of Charleston and some of the best restaurants found in that area.

This first post will focus on Mount Pleasant, which is located right across the Ravenel Bridge from downtown Charleston.

Below are just 5 of our favorite restaurants and cafes in Mount Pleasant:

Crave: Serving up artisan sandwiches, pasta, steak, and seafood, Crave provides an eclectic mix of various foods that are sure to delight your palette. The atmosphere is casual and the food is moderately priced. One of our favorite dishes is the turkey club sandwich complimented by a mermaid martini!

1968 Riviera Dr # O, Mount Pleasant, SC 29466 / (843) 884-1177 / brunch, lunch, dinner

Mustard seed: For some great food, a casual atmosphere, and excellent service, take a trip to the Mustard Seed. This quaint restaurant features everything from creamy pasta dishes to fresh salads, chicken entrees to mussels and linguine, and much more. The bread that they put on your table at the beginning of dinner is also exceptional and is covered in seasoning and cheese.

1036 Chuck Dawley Boulevard,Mount Pleasant, SC 29464-4178 / (843) 849-0050 / lunch, dinner (not open Sundays)

Yamato: If you love Hibachi-style cooking as much as we do then you’ll definitely want to check out Yamato. With a fun and social atmosphere, great food, huge portions, and silly chefs, Yamato will instantly steal your heart. This restaurant is particularly great for larger groups.

1993 Riviera Drive, Mount Pleasant, SC 29466 / (843) 881-1190 / dinner

Red Drum: With somewhat of a Tex-Mex thing going on Red Drum will add a flair to your night. Serving up excellent culinary masterpieces such as lamb shank, fresh seafood, and enchilada appetizers this elegant restaurant is sure to knock your socks off. Note that Red Drum is considered fine dining and we suggest calling in advance to book a reservation.

803 Coleman Boulevard, Mount Pleasant, SC 29464 / (843) 849-0313 / sunday brunch, dinner (closed Mondays)

Mozzo: This deli is a must when visiting the Charleston area. With a huge selection of artisan sandwiches, pasta salads, cole slaws, and desserts, it can be easy to go overboard when dining at Mozzo. They’re a deli that definitely knows what they’re doing. Some of our favorite sandwiches include the Roma, The Godfather, Fusion, Dig the Fig, and Fat Boy.

730 Coleman Boulevard, Mount Pleasant, SC 29464 / (843) 388-5755 / breakfast, lunch

Some other Mount Pleasant restaurants that we love include Opal, Langdon’s, Jacob’s Kitchen, Basil, Next Door, Sette, and Uno Mas (great margaritas).

Have you ever been to Mount Pleasant? What’s your favorite restaurant in the area?