Hampton Park Area
Moe’s Crosstown Tavern (714 Rutledge Ave., 843/722-3287, Mon.–Sat., 11 a.m.–midnight, bar until 2 a.m., $10–15) is not only one of the classic Southern dives, but they’ve got one of the best kitchens on this side of town, known for hand-cut fries, great wings, and, most of all, excellent burgers. On Tuesdays, the burgers are half-price at happy hour—one of Charleston’s best deals.
With a motto like “Grits are good for you,” you know what you’re in store for at Hominy Grill (207 Rutledge Ave., 912/937-0930, breakfast Mon.–Fri. 7:30–11:30 a.m., lunch and dinner 11:30 a.m.–8:30 p.m., brunch Sat.–Sun. 9 a.m.–3 p.m., $10–20), set in a renovated barbershop at Rutledge and Cannon near the Medical University of South Carolina. Primarily revered for his Sunday brunch, Chef Robert Stehling has fun, almost mischievously so, breathing new life into American and Southern classics.
Because this is largely a locals’ place, you can impress your friends back home by saying you had the rare pleasure of the Hominy’s sautéed shad roe with bacon and mushrooms—when the shad are running, that is.
The newest rave of Charleston foodies is the Tuscan-inspired fare of Chef Ken Vedrinski at
Trattoria Lucca (41 Bogard St., 843/973-3323, www.trattorialuccadining.com, Tues.–Thurs. 6–10 p.m., Fri.–Sat. 6–11 p.m., Sun. 5–8 p.m., $20–23). The menu is simple but perfectly focused, featuring handmade pasta and signature items like the pork chop or the fresh cheese plate. You’ll be surprised at how much food your money gets you here. Sunday evenings see a family-style, prix fixe communal dinner.
© Jim Morekis from Moon Charleston & Savannah, 4th Edition