South Carolina has diverse culinary traditions, from the Lowcountry Gullah cooks to traditional Southern fare like shrimp and grits to the upscale restaurants that make up Charleston’s famed culinary scene. The Palmetto State offers a dining experience appropriate for every palate, from the mountainous Upstate to the Midlands to the ocean.
A significant portion of South Carolina’s culinary landscape consists of locally manufactured and harvested goods. Many of the ingredients that go into our finest recipes are cultivated here in South Carolina, from fruits and vegetables to shrimp plucked from the Atlantic Ocean’s coastlines.
Best Restaurants To Try in South Carolina:
10. Hamptons – Sumter, SC
In one of the most stunning and historic buildings in the heart of Sumter, South Carolina, the Hamptons serves regional American cuisine with an Italian flair. The Hamptons relocated to their current location in 2018 and started welcoming visitors after undergoing a makeover that honored the history of the building.
Hamptons attracts customers and admirers from Sumter and far beyond as a destination restaurant well of traveling for with a world-class chef, a sizable rooftop with stunning views, a private dining room, and an elegant and cosmopolitan cocktail lounge upstairs.
The Hamptons is the go-to location for a top-notch dining experience for holiday parties, supper clubs, dinner parties, and luncheons.
9. Summa Joes – Anderson, SC
We deliver a flavor of the Upstate to your plate at SummaJoe’s. To create a unique eating experience, we use fresh ingredients from nearby farms whenever possible.
When available, we take great pride in using products from Polecat Vegetable Farm, Split Creek Farm, and our neighborhood Anderson Farmers Market. We prepare fresh meals daily to provide you with the highest quality possible.
Instead of the frozen, processed dishes prevalent in many American restaurants today, we employ fresh, healthy ingredients. We intend to demonstrate that homemade, fresh cuisine can be prepared in a restaurant. At SummaJoe’s, they make their pizza dough by hand, make each of our sauces from scratch, and roast our lunch meats daily.
8. The Wilcox – Aiken, SC
The great reputation of our kitchen is a result of our chefs’ inventiveness. Even though our chef finds inspiration abroad, the food remains American. You can be confident that your meal will be memorable and that your service will be prompt and pleasant, whether you are relaxing in our dining room, taking in Southern breezes poolside, or enjoying the warm club atmosphere of our lobby.
High praise has been given to The Willcox for sustainability, and our community, Best Chefs of America, Wine Spectator, and our team have all given us accolades for our food, cocktails, and service. Come and join us for a meal. The experience is casual and surprisingly excellent.
7. Michael’s Rock Hill Grille – Rock Hill, SC
To deliver a customer-centered experience, Michael’s Rock Hill Grille launched in Rock Hill, South Carolina, in 2007. It uses distinct trademark sauces across the menu, and it’s signature tropical cocktails.
It won’t be easy to choose from the extensive appetizers and homemade soups. Still, you can’t go wrong with Michael’s Rock Hill Grille’s Palm Canyon clam chowder, fried pickle puckers, or golden fried asparagus.
A chicken Baja salad, a ginger salmon salad, an orchard bountiful, and a blackened tuna salad are among the meal-worthy salads on the menu. The Maryland crab cakes, Kentucky-style grille sandwich, black & blue burger, Cajun chicken tortellini, and tempura-style Gulf shrimp are additional standout menu items.
6. Wade’s Family Restaurant – Spartanburg, SC
Wade’s Restaurant specializes in mouthwatering “Southern Cooked Meats and Vegetables,” delivered by a helpful wait staff or from the well-organized takeaway section. Since 1947, Wade’s has specialized in Southern cuisine, and they take great pride in their standing.
In addition to winning local “Favorite” awards for their fried chicken and sweet tea, they were chosen as Southern Living’s Best Family Restaurant in the 2006 Readers’ Choice Awards. Wade’s typically feeds around 2500 visitors every day.
The guests’ favorites include macaroni and cheese, sweet potato soufflé, fried chicken, turkey and dressing, meatloaf, “genuine” mashed potatoes, and peanut butter pie. Wade bakes 3500 of their renowned yeast rolls daily and brews 260 gallons of iced tea.
5. Alodia’s Cucina Italiana – Columbia, SC
The love of an Italian family inspired the creation of Alodia’s Cucina Italiana. The first restaurant owned by proprietor Adam Huneau has wowed taste buds in Irmo with its authentic Italian cuisine made up of dishes from his family’s cookbook.
The food at Alodia’s is authentically Italian, as is the setting. The core of the food that brought generations together is fresh sauces and homemade pasta.
Adam is committed to making his eateries as hospitable and cozy as his home kitchen. Adam and his wife, Betsy, are happy to introduce Alodia’s cuisine to a younger crowd.
4. Sole Italian Restaurant – Myrtle Beach, SC
Carlos and Patricia Ribera are a renowned husband and wife duo that run the Italian restaurant Sole. As the chief chef, Carlos is responsible for designing and carrying out the meal each night.
All things Italian are celebrated in the cuisine at Sole. Fried calamari, eggplant rollatini, mozzarella Caprese, and crab-stuffed mushrooms with garlic and oregano sauce were served as appetizers.
For the main courses, Sole reinvented traditional Italian dishes such as chicken cacciatore, veal marsala, linguini alla vongole, shrimp scampi, and salmon Florentina pan-seared over angel hair pasta with spinach and a homemade lemon garlic sauce.
3. Soby’s New South Cuisine – Greenville
Soby’s New South Cuisine is a unique fusion of modern continental cuisine with traditional Southern ingredients that gives your old favorites a brand-new spin.
In a 19th-century cotton mill that has been restored, the restaurant is situated in the center of downtown Greenville. Reimagined Southern cuisine is served in a spacious, brick-walled setting with a sizable wine cellar.
The team is well-trained to give our visitors a fantastic eating experience in a friendly and lively environment. Additionally, more than 500 options are on the wine list, which is a regular recipient of awards from Wine Spectator Magazine.
2. The Jazz Corner – Hilton Head Island, SC
The Jazz Corner is the leading jazz restaurant and club in the South East, serving delicious meals every night in a cozy and comfortable setting.
They debuted on March 30th, 1999, with The George Shearing Quintet. They’ve remained committed to providing a distinctive experience to individuals who value excellent jazz combined with good dining and exceptional service in a sophisticated setting.
Although the instrumentation and vocalization of the musicians on The Jazz Corner’s schedule today vary, the four categories remain the same. The club’s weekday programming differs slightly from its weekend schedule in that two new types have been introduced for greater diversity.
1. Halls Chophouse – Charleston, SC
Halls Chophouse is an American-Fine Dining establishment that offers excellent steaks, Lowcountry, and fresh seafood dishes in a vibrant, eye-catching setting.
Halls Chophouse is the newest dining option in Charleston’s Upper King Street design and dining neighborhood. Distinctive desserts, a sizable wine list, a lively bar, and imaginative, rich decor similar to old-world steakhouses complement it.
Halls Chophouse is a classic American steakhouse with excellent service and knowledgeable staff that provides a memorable dining experience that will tempt visitors to return time and time. They provide two audio-visual-equipped private dining rooms that accommodate groups of up to 32 people.
Frequently Asked Questions
What famous food is South Carolina known for?
Shrimp and grits, previously a cost-effective Lowcountry favorite, have unquestionably become one of South Carolina’s most famous dishes and are now a menu favorite throughout the state.
What are things you can only get in South Carolina?
Tea from Charleston Tea Plantation. An operating factory, 127 acres of plants, a gift shop, and any Carolina Sea Salt may be found at the Charleston Tea Plantation.
What snack is South Carolina known for?
The official snack of South Carolina is boiled peanuts since they are so well-liked in the Palmetto State. South Carolina’s official state snack should not be missed. When they are at their prime, which is in the summer and early fall, look for them at roadside stalls.
What BBQ is South Carolina known for?
South Carolina BBQ is a whole-hog country when it comes to meat. This entails slow-cooking a 125-pound pig for at least 12 hours over a brand-new bed of hot coals in a pit made of cinder blocks until the meat comes apart. The earliest type of barbeque is whole-hog cooking.
What food was invented in South Carolina?
Traditional American cookies called benne wafers come from Charleston, South Carolina. Butter, sugar, flour, eggs, baking powder, and benne—the Bantu name for sesame seeds—are all combined to make them. They used to be given good luck tokens to guests leaving plantation festivities.
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