Wooden shutters, white tablecloths, and really good Southern food are all things that come to mind when we think of “classic Charleston restaurants.” Really though, we’re just describing Magnolias in the French Quarter. This beloved spot serves upscale takes on fried green tomatoes, crab bisque, and shrimp and grits and is great for occasions when you want to eat somewhere just slightly fancier than you normally would, like for your parents’ anniversary or after a graduation. Much like Charleston itself, it’s the kind of place where dressing up isn’t required, but you won’t feel out of place if you do.
More spots in French QuarterSee more
Pearlz Oyster Bar
Pearlz Oyster Bar is a low-key spot in the French Quarter known for cheap beers, fresh oysters, and a great Happy Hour.
Slightly North Of Broad
Slightly North of Broad (SNOB) in the French Quarter serves Lowcountry dishes and local seafood and has a lively bar that’s very popular with locals.
The Rooftop Bar At Vendue
The Rooftop Bar at Vendue is one of the more low-key rooftop bars in town and is a great place to escape the crowded French Quarter.
More American spotsSee more
Peninsula Grill at the Planters Inn is an upscale steakhouse and seafood restaurant that's well known for their famous Ultimate Coconut Cake.
Hank’s Seafood is an upscale Ansonborough restaurant known for seasonal lobster, local oysters, and shellfish towers
Rodney Scott’s BBQ
Rodney Scott’s BBQ in North-Central specializes in whole hog barbecue and serves classics like pulled pork, ribs, and lots of great sides.
Suggested by our writers
Husk serves refined Southern food and is the best known restaurant in Charleston. If you can't get a table, head next door to the Bar at Husk instead.
Leon’s Oyster Shop
Leon’s Oyster Shop in the West Side serves fried chicken, frozen and draft cocktails, soft serve, and yes, really good chargrilled oysters.
Poogan’s Porch is located inside a century old Victorian house and is known for their Lowcountry brunch dishes, like pimento cheese fritters.
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