Although, I have lived in the Charleston area for eight years now, I haven't as of yet cut beyond the crust of all the fine restaurants available throughout the city. They are numerous. One of the most highly anticipated culinary events in the Charleston area, Charleston's Restaurant Week, affords Lowcountry residents and visitors an excellent opportunity to sample the best at a discount. This is one event I look forward to year after year.
I generally pick two from the long list of participating restaurants offering prefixed menus consisting of three items for one set price at either $20, $30 or $40. The last time I chose High Cotton on E. Bay Street. You can read about the adventure here. I've had some great culinary experiences and some unexpected surprises in the form of staples, pun intended with a smile. The next installment is September 4-15.
You will have to wait a few months for Restaurant Week, but in the meantime, there are two opportunities for you to enjoy Charleston's finest with an added treat in this month of June. The first is a Blue Jeans and Craft Beer Dinner at Circa 1886 on Friday, June 14th and the second is part of 82 Queen's Summer Dinner Series, a Bourbon Dinner featuring Jim Beam on Friday, June 28th.
Circa 1886 is located on the grounds of Wentworth Mansion and was the original carriage house, and this is no surprise, built in 1886. It offers an elegant dining experience and it is unlikely you would see patrons wearing blue jeans, but for this event putting on your favorite pair of blue jeans is required. Join Chef Marc Collins for an informal fun food and craft beer night.
Festivities start with a reception on the patio from 6:30-7 p.m. followed by a 4-course dinner paired with newly released beers from Westbrook Brewery. The dinner is $50 per person, price excludes tax, gratuity and additional beverages. Reservations are required. Click on Blue Jeans and Craft Beer Dinner at Circa 1886 for more information. I personally have not been to Circa 1886 and it is on the top of my must-see list. It is located at 149 Wentworth Street.
82 Queen is located in the Historic French Quarter and its address, you guessed it, is 82 Queen Street. It has been serving southern hospitality for 30 years, but its address is 300 years old.
I have been to 82 Queen. The entrance is a long alley way that opens up into a beautiful outdoor courtyard. Inside are eleven different dining rooms spread throughout three buildings, each with its own name. The restaurant is famous for its she-crab soup.
The special event, Bourbon Dinner featuring Jim Beam, is part of the restaurant's Summer Dinner Series. Chef Steven Lusby has created a menu that not only compliments their unique Bourbons such as Basil Hayden's and Knob Creek, but infuses their special elixirs into the food. It's the mating of an old all-American tradition with the famous Lowcountry cuisine. Tickets are $79 in advance, or $99 the day of the dinner. Prices excludes tax and gratuity.
Want to have some fun and an opportunity to win something? Penelope the Pineapple has returned to Wentworth Mansion starting Monday, June 10th with a full itinerary of warm weather adventures through Charleston. You can follow her documented travels on Charming Inns of Charleston's blog and their Facebook.
Each week on Monday, you’ll have the opportunity to guess where she is, who she’s hanging out with and what she’s up to. You will have until Wednesday of each week to guess correctly and be entered in a drawing.
The prize is an overnight package for two at the Kings Courtyard Inn and a $30 gift certificate to Charleston’s brand new breakfast and lunch restaurant Kitchen 208. Contest ends Wednesday, July 3rd. Full details are on Charming Inns of Charleston.