Enjoy an Unforgettable Night Out at These Top 10 Restaurants in Downtown Charleston

Tired of cooking at home? Treat yourself to a delicious meal at a restaurant instead! Charleston is home to a wide array of top-rated restaurants and bars. From upscale lounges to chic bistros, Charleston has an eclectic assortment of spots for you and your friends to try. Not only is it easy to find a spot that will satisfy your cravings, but it’s definitely doable to find a place that will also work with your budget. Not sure what restaurants to check out? We’ve got you covered! Check out our guide to the top 10 restaurants in Charleston now. 

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1. O-Ku Sushi

Sophisticated Japanese restaurant that is known for its unique and fresh cuisine

plate of sushi

Treat yourself to a fresh plate of sushi at this top-rated Charleston restaurant. Image courtesy of Yelp.

463 King St | Radcliffborough | o-kusushi.com

First up on the list is O-Ku Sushi. If you’re in the mood for fresh sushi rolls and authentic Japanese cuisine, O-Ku Sushi is the place to be. Located in Radcliffeborough, O-Ku Sushi offers an upscale and rustic dining space where you can sit back and relax with friends.

On the menu, you’ll find a wide selection of Chef Specialty dishes, hot items, box style sushi, nigiri, and rolled sushi. Some of our favorite menu items include the Wagyu Tataki, Lobster Temaki, Braised Beef Short Rib, and Firecracker Roll. O-Ku Sushi also offers plenty of cocktails, beer, sake, and wine to enjoy alongside your dish. 

Ready to try O-Ku Sushi out for yourself? Reserve a table for your next meal now!

“This is contemporary fusion sushi. Rolls feature things like potato crisps, but an open mind and experienced palate will enjoy O-ku's departure from tradition. My favorite roll was the Salmon and Lemon with crab salad filling. It was a simple, but deliciously delicate flavor bomb.” - Yelp Review

Purchase a GiftYa card for O-Ku Sushi.

2. Husk

Charming restaurant in Downtown Charleston that uses locally-sourced ingredients for all of its dishes

entrees of lamb
Husk is known for its savory and inventive dishes. Image courtesy of Yelp.

76 Queen St | French Quarter | huskrestaurant.com

Next up on the list is Husk. Husk is an award-winning restaurant that is dedicated to providing true Southern food using locally-sourced ingredients. In 2011, Bon Appetit named Husk as one of the Best New Restaurants in America. 

The menu frequently changes depending on what the region’s producers are offering on a particular day. You can check the website for the menu of the day as well as past menu offerings. Past menu items include Yellowfin Tuna Tartare, Charcoaled Pork Toro, and Wood Fired Stono River Oysters. Husk also offers a small dessert menu, filled with fun treats like Peach Beignets and a Sorbet Trio. 

Reserve a table for your next lunch or dinner now!

“Always a fan favorite. Husk forever will be one of my favorite places to visit when in Charleston. Start with the dragoons punch, a drink recipe from the 1790s made up of various teas and spirits! Their pimento cheese dip with their homemade benne crackers and chili crunch topping is to die for. Super creamy and tangy!” - Yelp Review

Purchase a GiftYa card for Husk.

3. Indaco

Rustic Italian restaurant that offers wood-fired pizzas, handcrafted pastas, and more delicious cuisine

Sit back and relax inside Indaco’s rustic dining space. Image courtesy of Indaco.

526 King St | Cannonborough | indacorestaurant.com/location/indaco-charleston

If you’re in the mood for Italian food, we recommend stopping by Indaco. This rustic Italian restaurant offers hearty dishes and great drinks. It’s the perfect spot to kick back and relax with friends.

On the menu, you’ll find a wide selection of pizzas, pastas, and meat and seafood entrees. Some of our favorite dishes include the Roasted Duck Breast, Ziti Verde, Eggplant Pizza, and C.A.B. 18 oz Ribeye. Can’t decide on just one dish? Order the three-course, family-style meal for the table! 

“Our server was super friendly and funny and took great care of us. We devoured our Margherita pizza as an appetizer - it was incredible. To say that the pasta was out of this world is still an understatement. Fresh. Delicious. Flavorful. Vibrant. Mouth-watering.” - Yelp Review

Purchase a GiftYa card for Indaco.

4. Anson

Charming and rustic restaurant that is known for its savory Southern cuisine

12 Anson St | Ansonborough | ansonrestaurant.com

Anson is a stylish, rustic restaurant in Ansonborough that is known for its savory and innovative Southern dishes. The restaurant is open Tuesday through Saturday starting at 5pm, making it the perfect dinner spot for after work food and drinks. 

On the menu, you’ll find delicious meals like the 16 oz NY Strip, Roasted East Coast Oysters, and Shrimp & Grits. Dessert is also available! Our favorite desserts include the Pecan Pie ala Mode and Creme Brulee. 

Reserve a table for your next dinner at Anson now!

“Food and service was great. Had a bottled wine special. We had a tuna crudo special, she crab soup, crispy whole flounder, and the curry grouper. The grouper particularly had incredible flavors. And ended with the duck fat apple streusel. Highly recommend eating here!” - Yelp Review

5. Tempest

Elegant seafood restaurant that is located in the former historic Harriott Pinckney Home for Sailors

32 N Market St, Suite C | French Quarter | tempestcharleston.com

Next up on the list is Tempest. This stunning restaurant is famous for both its regal dining setting and fresh seafood dishes. In 2020, it was voted Best New Restaurant by USA Today’s 10 Best. 

The menu features a wide selection of small plates, entrees, roasts, sides, and desserts. Some of their most popular dishes include the Roasted Cherrystone Clams, Spring Ravioli, and Tuna Tataki. Brunch is offered every weekend from 10am-3pm. You can expect savory dishes like Shrimp and Grits and Champagne Benedict if you stop by then. 

Check out their full menu to learn more!

“Charming location with two levels and an outside for dining. The downstairs is richer in time and upstairs is more contemporary. The Fin Star Green Leaf was one of the best salads I have had in years. It was fresh and perfectly dressed.” - Yelp Review

6. 39 Rue De Jean

Refined French cafe and bar that will bring you back to the 1800’s

39 Rue De Jean cultivates an upscale, yet friendly, atmosphere. Image courtesy of Yelp.

39 John St | Mazyck-Wraggborough 

39 Rue de Jean will take you back to Paris of the late 1800’s. With a rustic, brick wall setting and menu filled with Parisian-inspired classics, you’ll forget that the city of Charleston is just outside. 

Under “Les Entrees,” you’ll find mouthwatering dishes like the Pan-Seared Duck Breast, Seared Scallops, and Braised Short Rib. Cocktails, wine, and spirits are also available to enjoy alongside your meal. Check out their menu online to see their full selection of dishes! 

“We stopped in for lunch. My husband and I had the French onion soup. Delicious! Rich beef broth, Carmelizes onions and beautiful Gruyère cheese that made the whole thing. One if not the best I have had. The cheese was so good and not stringy.” - Yelp Review

7. Poogan’s Porch

Popular Southern restaurant located inside a Victorian townhouse

plates of food
Poogan’s Porch offers an extensive brunch and lunch menu. Image courtesy of Poogan’s Porch.

72 Queen St | French Quarter | poogansporch.com

Located inside a restored Victorian house, Poogan’s Porch offers a truly unique dining experience. Since 1976, locals have flocked to Poogan’s Porch for its charming ambiance and delicious Southern cuisine. Guests can stop by for brunch or dinner. Whenever you go, you can expect to enjoy some of the best food of your life. 

On the menu, you’ll find a wide selection of starters, salads, entrees, and desserts. Some of their most popular dishes include the Chicken Fried Pork Chop, BBQ Mahi Mahi, and Sweet-Tea Glazed Salmon. Reserve a table for brunch or dinner now!

“If you're visiting Charleston, this is the perfect place for brunch/lunch. The food and outdoor patio were outstanding, but the service is what made our breakfast so great.” - Yelp Review

8. FIG

Local neighborhood restaurant that offers an upscale bistro setting

plates of food on wooden table
Since 2013, locals have flocked to FIG for its inventive dishes. Image courtesy of FIG.

232 Meeting St | Ansonborough | eatatfig.com

If you’re looking for fresh and flavorful food, FIG is the place to be. Located in Ansonborough, FIG is dedicated to providing hearty dishes for its guests using the best ingredients around. 

For dinner, you can enjoy mouthwatering plates like the Sauteed American Red Snapper, Pork Tenderloin Milanese, and Cast Iron Strip Steak. For dessert, you can try some Creamy Basque Cheesecake or enjoy a sweet cocktail like the Houdini’s Martini. Learn more on their website now!

“Delicious! The highlights were the gnocchi and the arugula salad starters. The gnocchi had the fluffiest texture. The bolognese sauce was so good I wanted to scrape every last drop off the plate. The arugula salad was simple and fresh.” - Yelp Review

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