Hello sunshine! It had been a super-duper week in Charleston, SC, and I can’t belief all this is already in the past. We had an exciting time with some necessary relaxing moments. But most of the days, I had been eating, photographing food or tasting everything I could reach. As I am not the lying on the beach type, if it comes to choose a vacation destination, I need a little more to do and see than water and sand. Some sightseeing, long walks, of course shopping, some cultural stuff and good restaurants. I found all this and a lot more in Charleston and I am sure this was not my last visit. Actually you would see me bouncing, if I could go again right away.
We were lucky to find a small vacation home which the owner has left as it was since her mother died (I hope this didn’t happen in this house, although it would explain the nasty smell in one room). This house was as cute as you can imagine, the furniture and everything else inside this dreamy cottage was antique: cabinets full of lovely painted dishes, heavy cast iron pans which bottoms had been scratched for decades until they become so smooth, kitchen gadgets I had never seen before and these days most of them had been replaced with something with a plug. A back in times cottage with a swing on the porch, colorful quilts were piled in one dresser and the other contained hand stitched tablecloth. A food photographer’s dream, how often do you come along with a house full of styling props? I wish I had more time. Don’t make me started with the antique cookbook collection, my fingerprints are all over these recipes.
Back to business, even before I hit the road I knew Charleston has some darn good restaurants, but actually it is a dream foodie town and I had a few of the best meals in a while there. My restaurants choices are not from the what’s hip right now list (I think “hip” is not even hip anymore?). It’s more what my appetite wanted at this point of time and where I lingered around when my stomach growled.
Hope and Union Coffee Co.
A coffee lovers heaven. In need for your caffeine fix? Go there! Slurp an espresso and chat with the friendly barista while your hand brewed cup is dripping. My thought at the first sip: exceptional strong! But it’s not, actually it was the flavor that hit me in the face. Not for ‘brown water’ coffee drinker. (199 St Philip St, Charleston, SC)
Go there on sticky buns Sunday, they are legendary, cinnamon rolls are also available. Every Sunday from 8 am to 1 pm. Just a few minutes walk from Hope and Union Coffee, so makes sense to combine both. At the end you got two hands, one for the coffee mug and one to hold a cookie or cupcake. 73 Spring St, Charleston, SC
They don’t have a homepage? Do they? This is where the natives enjoy their low country cuisine. I think “rustic” is the first impression everyone gets, it’s not fine dining at all. The service is very friendly and helpful. I tried the she crab soup, it’s a South Carolina specialty similar to New England clam chowder, a heavy and rich white soup. Don’t drink the sherry, it’s for the soup. Daily specials with fresh fish, most menu items are deep-fried. It takes some time to get there but worth the drive: 4808 N Highway 17, Awendaw, SC
I am in love with this one! Everything is terrific, friendly and obliging service, fresh and creative food and this seams to sound more than strange, but even the restrooms are beautiful and comfortable. It’s in the detail and they nailed it… We enjoyed our lunch, the menu is changing daily and you can look it up at their internet page.
I wish this cozy place could be my neighborhood bar. It’s a wine bar (don’t panic they also serve beer) with a pleasant selection of domestic and international wines. And they don’t stop there, they also pamper you with a choice of cheese or cured meats. I bet you also have a hart time to choose from their variety of salami, prosciutto or/and imported cheese. 152 King St, Charleston, SC
The first impression is not wrong: welcoming, sunny and bright, a place to stay a while and relax from all the sightseeing. We enjoyed locally roasted coffee and tempting baked goods: cookie, whoopie pie and don’t end with a big piece of cake with buttercream frosting (in this order please!). 160 East Bay St, Charleston, SC
I did not even mention every place we put our feet under the table in Charleston, SC. This ones left a mark on my mind and on my taste buds. Hope to see you soon!