As you probably know, Ben and I snuck away for a few days (almost a week!) last week and made the trip down to one of our favorite spots…South Carolina! With some vacation time to burn and nothing on the calendar, we made the spur of the moment decision a few weeks ago when we saw some cheap airfares. The timing was perfect. It is a gorgeous time of year down in the Lowcountry and we were so happy to have a few days to kick back and relax!
A few days before we left, I asked Ben what he wanted to do while we were in Kiawah Island/Charleston but before he could even answer, I rephrased my question…What do you want to eat? And that’s basically what we did! We hung by the pool, chilled, and enjoyed lots of great food and drinks. It was perfection.
So, without further adieu, here’s the recap…
Upon arriving into Charleston, we decided to hit an old favorite for lunch. And, let me just tell you that Bull Street Gourmet is nothing like what it was like while I was in college at College of Charleston. They’ve relocated and upgraded and are basically a full blown gourmet market. Good thing they still offer the same dynamite sandwiches, even if they no longer call the monster roast beef a “Roast Beast.” We still loved it. If you follow me on Instagram, you know I was pumped to be served a monster chicken salad sandwich with a fork so I could really go to town. Yum!
It rained cats and dogs for the first part of our trip, but we didn’t let that stop us. After a long day of travel, we decided to keep it easy for dinner and stopped by the Wild Olive on John’s Island. This place may be a little off the beaten bath, but Ben and I beat a path to their door every time we’re in town. They serve the best Italian food and everything is fresh and local. It doesn’t get much better than the Wild Olive for Italian. We’d love a restaurant like this at home. Ben never strays from his fave- the Chicken Parmesan which is served with alfredo pasta (yum!) and I tried a daily special (shocking, I know) with pulled chicken, roasted red peppers, and tomatoes. It was divine.
The weather continued to be uncooperative the next day, but that didn’t stop us from alligator stalking…Don’t worry Mom, we didn’t go too close. This bad boy may not appear to be too big, but I’d say he was 10 or 11 ft long. I wasn’t getting one step closer. Plus, you never really know what is lurking in those ponds…probably more alligators.
When we stay out on Kiawah, we usually have a hard time mustering up the motivation for the car ride to Charleston. With all of the hype we’d heard about the new Upper King district, we were so excited to see what was in store for us. We decided to stop by a few places for drinks first. It was the perfect plan.
We started off with cocktails at the Rarebit. Nothing special on my end, but Ben tried his first Moscow Mule. What rock have we been hiding under!? We loved it! I had erroneously thought that I did not like ginger beer. Not only did I like it, I loved it and we may have spent the rest of our vacation drinking Moscow Mules
Next stop, Prohibition! Prohibition was a super cute, dark, friendly bar with a you guessed it…Prohibition theme. Not normally one to drink mixed drinks over wine, I opted again for a Elderflower Cucumber cocktail that didn’t disappoint. And Ben continued his streak of Moscow Mules…See? I told you we drank them the rest of the trip!
Based off a recommendation, we made a reservation at The Macintosh for dinner and were nicely surprised with not only an awesome atmosphere, but great (and creative) food.
I’m always a sucker for softshell crabs, so I started with that while Ben got the seafood charcuterie (interesting, huh)? It was everything you see on a normal charcuterie platter, except the seafood version. Both were outstanding. They were followed with a swordfish dish for me and steak for Ben (unphotogenic steak though delicious)…
Once the sun came out on our third day, it was HOT! I had my first iced coffee of the season. Always such a turning point for me…
The gardens were in FULL bloom and were hands down, the prettiest flowers I’ve seen in forever. I wish I had these green thumb skills. Plus, that purple stuff? Oh yea, it’s kale. How awesome is that?!
The next day, we ventured back into Charleston to visit the Palmetto Brewery! This is a standard Ben and Bri vacation stop. We always try to find a craft beer brewery nearby to stop in for a tour. It’s such a fun activity if you’ve never tried it! Sadly though, they were under construction so even though we hung out for a bit…no pics.
We did however hit an old standby for lunch. Basil, we love you. There is no Thai restaurant that can measure up to Basil, even after Ben’s fun experience with the crazy mushrooms. This place holds a spot in my heart and I know it does the same with Ben. So, so good! We HAD to get the chicken lettuce wraps. I was having a major pad thai craving and Ben always gets his crispy fried Basil Duck. Period.
Ben and I conducted some beer sampling of our own, too. Why doesn’t Maryland have make your own six packs mix and match style? We loved it!
How cute is this place? I mean, the Village at Freshfields is adorable. I love it!
We also made the mandatory stop at Hege’s for their ohmygod-out of this world-ridiculous cheeseburger. Because, who goes to an outstanding restaurant and doesn’t get the cheeseburger? Hands down, best burger of our lives! No Really. I’m trying to recreate it currently. It’s like burger meats fluffy meatball covered in cheese on an English Muffin. Whoa. PS. The fries are really good too.
We did some bike riding, mostly with cocktails or coffees in hand. We enjoyed Moscow Mules at the beach one afternoon. I knew reality would be rough when we had to return.
We enjoyed some lunch fare at the Ryder Cup Bar. Blackened mahi sandwich and bistro fries for me. A, get this, Pimento Cheese Fried Green Tomato Sandwich for Ben. Oh yea, with Onion Rings. It’s amazing he didn’t die of happiness right there. We enjoyed all of this fare overlooking the putting green and the beach. It was so relaxing!
Our last night, we kept it simple and ordered take out pizzas from La Tela Pizzeria. Not just average delivery pizzas though…Ben got the quail egg and pecorino pizza while I enjoyed a prosciutto and arugula pizza. Perfect!
Can you believe how much great food we had on this trip? It was really outstanding. The awesome food scene in Charleston definitely has so much to offer. We often wish our restaurants at home would pick it up a few notches. It makes visiting Charleston so special. And, for every restaurant we visited, there’s so many more that we didn’t even hit.
That’s a wrap! Most of our plates looked just like the one below when we were finished! The sign of a great trip! Take me back!