Friday, February 27, 2015

Charleston Eats

Last weekend, I headed to Charleston, South Carolina with four of my five "honorary bridal party" members. Mr. H and I only had one friend each stand up with us on the big day, but I am fortunate enough to have five ladies that I call "my best friend." One, I've known since childhood when we were just silly sixth graders, others I met in college at Kappa Alpha Theta and we share a unique bond of sisterhood, and one I collected here in Cleveland as adults. All are simply "my best friend," no matter how long I've known them, or how often I see them. I'm so lucky, and this past weekend just proved that once again. We had an amazing time exploring Charleston together (we missed you, Cristin!).
Of course, much of trip was focused around food and drink. My friends know me well, as this was a "wedding celebration," of sorts, since we didn't have time to squeeze in a bachelorette trip before our December wedding.

We landed in Charleston on Friday morning, checked into our adorable house that we rented for the weekend, and then went on the hunt for lunch. Completely by chance, we found The Park Cafe in our neighborhood and walked over.
It ended up being one of our favorite meals of the weekend! How random. I loved their "Dog of the Day," which was a house-made sausage with cheddar cheese whiz, caramelized onions, and one of the best buns that I've ever had.
The Bloody Mary wasn't a bad start to the trip either. I'd highly recommend The Park Cafe for brunch or lunch.

Our good eats continued all weekend, with only a few flops. I wanted to share the highlights, because apparently a lot of Ohioians find themselves in Charleston. One Uber driver (we used it all weekend) told us that there used to be a Charleston website called "Go Home to Ohio."

Other meal highlights included:

Dinner at Hominy Grill (James Beard award-winner) for some Southern classics like shrimp and grits, collard greens, fried green tomatoes, and more.
Brunch at Butcher & Bee, which included a Shrimp and Chorizo Benedict for me. It was hearty, but outstanding.
Our last dinner of the weekend was a memory-maker as well. Husk Restaurant (James Beard award-winner) was the most popular suggestion for Charleston eats, and it did not disappoint.
From the craft cocktails, the atmosphere, to the food, this was fine Southern dining at its best. I enjoyed the Oysters...
...and the Striploin, which was the smokiest-tasting beef that I've ever had. In the best possible way. The meat literally melted in my mouth.
I'll be thinking about that meat for a long time.

We also really enjoyed the bar scene in Charleston. They've embraced craft cocktails, and we kicked off the weekend with a Mixology tour of three bars on King Street. I highly recommend taking one of these tours, or the walking food tours. We visited Prohibition, The Cocktail Club, and Republic. All were fantastic. Also during the trip, we enjoyed an afternoon wine flight at Social Wine Bar and Restaurant...
...and really wanted to check out The Gin Joint next door (but they weren't open yet).

We spent a lot of time strolling down King Street. It has a ton of restaurants, bars, high-end shopping, and local shops. We also walked along the ocean, just soaking in some sunshine and water views. It was a chilly weekend for typical Charleston weather, but anything was better than the negative temperatures we all came from in Ohio, New York, and Windsor!

Truly, it was a wonderful weekend in a quaint city that I would certainly visit again. Time flew by, and we left with a long list of things we still wanted to do. I guess that's always a good feeling when checking out a new city. It was a nice break from the Cleveland weather we've been having, and it's always good for the soul to spend time with the people you love most. The comment was made several times that weekend..."Katrina, you have really awesome friends." I couldn't agree more.


bonnjill said...

Did you do one of the walking food tours? I did and was super unimpressed with it. The tour took us to a Belgian chocolate store, a praline store and a cooking store that was kind of like Sur La Table. And a barbecue place that I am pretty sure was a chain. The only place that was acceptable was Dixie Supply Company. I would have never eaten there otherwise, but their tomato pie is fantastic and fried chicken was amazing. If you do a food tour in Charleston be sure to ask where they will take you. Belgian chocolates and pralines are NOT a highlight of Charleston.

Bite Buff said...

Jill- No we did not. You're probably right, and visitors would need to be careful what company they are touring with. Our guide for the Mixology Tour had just completed a food tour, and it seemed like he had included some good options within walking distance.