Famous Restaurants in Charleston, SC

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Charleston, South Carolina is a city known for its beaches and old-styled architecture. One of the oldest cities in the U.S., it is characterized by cobblestone streets and antebellum houses. You will even find horse drawn carriages on the streets. The residents of Charleston have taken great care to preserve their city’s history. This is even more true for neighborhoods like the French Quarter and the Battery District. 

Charleston is home to several famous restaurants you will appreciate visiting if you are ever in town. They have various themes and specialties, but you’re nearly guaranteed to love any of them. People from all over go to Charleston to visit these places after all. So make sure you check them out!

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167 Raw Oyster Bar

New England style seafood restaurant with a raw oyster bar. 

This platter is ready to eat. Image courtesy of 167 Raw

193 King St | Charleston | 167raw.com/charleston

167 Raw Oyster Bar is a New England style oyster house in the heart of the south. Their menu highlights seafood from the east coast, which is a seafood haven. They pride themselves on bringing their customers the freshest seafood possible. And you’ll get to enjoy this seafood in a variety of ways. They have a raw bar where you can get oysters, little neck clams, jumbo shrimp cocktail, and caviar. 

They also serve oven roasted oyster, ceviche, lobster tostadas, and shrimp tacos. You can get scallop or oyster po boys, lobster rolls, tuna burgers, and pastrami’d swordfish. They even have some options that change daily and a few delectable desserts. They have homemade key lime pie, amaro montifero, and even a dessert of the day!

“10/10 recommend! Their menu is small but everything is so well done. We got the daily crudo which had a delicious strawberry purée and avocado cream. The clear winner was the scallop po boy. 4 large diver scallops grilled with butter and stuffed into a sweet buttered roll. Topped with a few sauces and chives and served with chips. CHEFS KISS. Order a few because you won't want to have just one!”–Yelp Review

167 Raw Oyster Bar isn’t accepting GiftYa digital gift cards just yet, but check here for all the other GiftYa cards available. 

Hall’s Chophouse

The best spot in Charleston to enjoy steak. 

434 King St | Charleston | hallschophouse.com

Hall’s Chophouse is a prime steak house that is known for specializing in high quality steaks. They proudly serve only USDA prime steaks from Allen Brothers of Chicago. Allen Brothers is the premier purveyor of fine prime meats. The steaks are hand selected, aged, and hand cut. Their steaks are among the best in the world!

At Hall’s, you can have filet mignon, New York strips, ribeyes, porterhouses, and dry aged steak. The New York strip steak is richly marbled and combined with their wet aging process, ribeye with marbling that slowly melts and bastes the meat, and porterhouses that contain both the sirloin strip and the tenderloin. But aside from steak, you can also get rack of lamb, chilled lobster tails, pan seared scallops, and parmesan truffle fries. 

“From the moment you enter you know you have chosen the perfect restaurant. Service is over the top. Food is amazing. There is not one service step missed! You will not be disappointed. Everyone is so pleasant and genuine. If you are only going to dine out one night or need a special occasion. Hall's needs to be your #1 pick. Don't settle for less.”–Yelp Review

Hall’s Chophouse isn’t accepting GiftYa digital gift cards just yet, but check here for all the other GiftYa cards available. 

Magnolia’s

This restaurant serves elevated Southern cuisine.

This decadent dish looks very tempting. Image courtesy of Magnolia’s

185 E Bay St | Charleston | magnoliascharleston.com

Magnolia’s was founded back in 1990 and has been paving the way for a new generation of low country cooking in the south ever since. They serve upscale southern cuisine. They take traditional ingredients and cooking techniques and elevate it with their personal flair and presentation. Their highly celebrated menu has many creative dishes to choose from!

Magnolia’s serves classics like fried green tomatoes and shellfish over grits, alongside their interpretation of dishes like lowcountry bouillabaisse and parmesan crusted market catch. They also serve down south egg rolls, Charleston crab cakes, blue crab bisque, and blackened catfish. They also serve delicious southern desserts. You can try their warm cream cheese pecan brownie or their salted caramel cheesecake. 

“10/10 definitely recommend Magnolias! Probably one of the best restaurant experiences I've had. Everyone was very attentive and made sure we were taken care of, drinks never emptied, etc. they definitely went above and beyond. The food was absolutely delicious! I got the blackened catfish and it was wonderful! Definitely recommend the housemade chips as an app and the sangria. Will definitely recommend this to anyone visiting Charleston!”–Yelp Review

Magnolia’s isn’t accepting GiftYa digital gift cards just yet, but check here for all the other GiftYa cards available. 

Poogan’s Porch

Southern foods with a twist inside a gorgeous Victorian home. 

72 Queen St | Charleston | poogansporch.com

Poogan’s Porch is Charleston’s oldest independent culinary establishment. It offers a fresh approach to Lowcountry cuisine. This restaurant has been recognized by several famous and reputable people and establishments. They have been featured in Martha Stewart Living, The Travel Channel, and Southern Living among other publications. Many well known politicians, celebrities, tourists, and locals absolutely love Poogan’s Porch. If you stop by this restaurant while you’re in Charleston, you will definitely learn what all the fuss is about!

The restaurant is in a beautifully restored Victorian house. It is a gorgeous atmosphere for people to enjoy during brunch and dinner. Your meal there won’t be easy to forget. You get to try their biscuits and gravy, sweet tea glazed salmon, and she-crab soup. They have BBQ Mahi Mahi and mac and cheese. They also serve a daily fresh catch! 

“Food here is great! I had the "Downhome breakfast," which included hash browns, eggs and sausage. They also served some warm biscuits for the table. The best thing on the plate - the hash browns. My goodness! Light, fluffy, crispy, seasoned. You can just order a whole side of these. Highly recommend for brunch.”–Yelp Review

Poogan’s Porch isn’t accepting GiftYa digital gift cards just yet, but check here for all the other GiftYa cards available. 

Fleet Landing Restaurant & Bar

Fresh, friendly, and consistent southern restaurant. 

This meal is loaded with delicious flavors. Image courtesy of Fleet Landing Restaurant & Bar

186 Concord St | Charleston | fleetlanding.net

Fleet Landing Restaurant & Bar is Charleston’s best waterfront restaurant. Housed in a 1940s retired naval building on the east side of the Charleston peninsula, this restaurant has amazing views. They feature classic and contemporary Southern cuisine and remain dedicated to freshness, quality, and consistency. They have a committed close knit team that works hard to provide energetic southern hospitality alongside their delicious meals. 

This restaurant has gotten lots of great press over the years, and for good reason. They have made very “best of” lists, and have been featured in Food & Wine, Southern Living, and Food Network. On their menu, you’ll find lump crab bruschetta, Lowcountry seafood gumbo, and Charleston shrimp & grits. You also get to choose their fresh catch of the day! 

“Food service. View. Beer. The combination was just perfect. The bartenders were very friendly and nice. Once we got our outside seats, I was amazed by the view. It was like sitting on the water. We ordered calamari and low seafood pasta. They were fulfilling enough for two people. Pasta has loooooooooots of seafood. Overall, great time and I would recommend it!”–Yelp Review

Fleet Landing Restaurant isn’t accepting GiftYa digital gift cards just yet, but check here for all the other GiftYa cards available. 

Hank’s Seafood Restaurant

One of the best seafood restaurants in Charleston. 

10 Hayne St | Charleston | hanksseafoodrestaurant.com

Hank’s Seafood Restaurant is one of the best seafood restaurants in Charleston. It is located in the heart of Charleston’s famous historic district. With its warm wood interior, caught that day entrees, and white dinner jacket wait staff, Esquire once named it one of America’s Best New Restaurants. Its appreciation for fresh, local ingredients and authentic Charleston flavors are the main things that makes Hank’s the culinary force it is today. 

This restaurant’s chef has studied and worked in the food industry for many years, and has used his expertise to create a dynamic menu. They have a raw bar where you can order tuna tartare, jumbo shrimp cocktail, and ceviche. Hank’s classics include pan seared sea scallops, roasted salmon, and bouillabaisse. Their dessert menu is also long and tempting. They have milk chocolate peanut butter parfait, key lime pie, and creme brule. 

“Well, I've just had the best dinner I've ever had. In. My. Entire. Life. Thank you, Hank's, for the amazing sautéed flounder with asparagus salad and tomato beurre blanc. I don't have words to describe the pleasure of that first bite - the gentle crispness of the fish, the green and fresh salad, the sweet lump crab ... for someone avoiding carbs, this dish filled the bill. And it did it deliciously.”–Yelp Review

Hank’s Seafood Restaurant isn’t accepting GiftYa digital gift cards just yet, but check here for all the other GiftYa cards available. 

82 Queen

One of the pioneer’s of Charleston’s famous Lowcountry cuisine. 

A casual atmosphere combined with elevated food. Image courtesy of America’s Cuisine

82 Queen St | Charleston | 82queen.com

82 Queen was founded to provide a uniquely Charleston dining experience that prioritizes fresh food and hospitality. They serve food inspired by French, African, Anglo-Saxon, and Caribbean cuisine. This cuisine is now known as Lowcountry cuisine, but back when 82 Queen started serving it, it had been an unnamed cuisine. They pioneered the rise of this cuisine in the area and remain a culinary powerhouse in the community. 

If you want to experience authentic Lowcountry cuisine, 82 Queen is a great place to visit. Their menu includes she-crab soup, jambalaya, crispy roasted duck, and shrimp and grits. They also have a gift shop that sells their she-crab soup mix so that you can make it yourself at home!

“With so many traditional Lowcountry restaurants in Charleston, it was difficult to select just one for dinner.  However, after reviewing several menus and reviews, I settled on 82 Queen.  The quaint dining room was a bit worn and the restrooms were filthy, but environment aside, the food was fantastic!”–Yelp Review

82 Queen isn’t accepting GiftYa digital gift cards just yet, but check here for all the other GiftYa cards available. 

Five Guys

A classic burger chain with a combination of options. 

364 King St | Charleston | fiveguys.com/364-king-street

If nothing on this list has caught your attention so far, you could always try an American classic. Five Guys is one of the best burger chains in the country, and is famous because of its prominence. Five Guys has many locations all over the country and offers over 250,000 ways to customize your burger and over 1,000 milkshake combinations. 

You won’t find freezers in the restaurant. Everything they use is completely fresh. They double cook their fries and hand prepare all their ingredients each day. The workers at Five Guys strive to provide their customers with the best experience they could have every time they visit. This classic burger spot never disappoints. 

“Definitely the place to go for a good burger and loads of fries! We practically ate ourselves sick! I had a little cheeseburger loaded up with onion, mushrooms and more. I love that you can get all the toppings you want at no extra cost! The amount of fries in the lil cup is plenty for me! Everything we had was really good, and the service was excellent. I was very pleased with this Five Guys, and plan to return soon!”–Yelp Review

Five Guys is accepting GiftYa digital gift cards!  

Charleston, SC is home to many famous restaurants of different kinds. You can enjoy foods from various cultures there, but especially Lowcountry cuisine which was pioneered in the city. Make sure that you enjoy all of what Charleston has to offer while you’re there, especially the food!

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