Tasting Table Publishes Charleston City Guide

By Tasting Table’s estimation, Charleston is one of the nation’s 10 most interesting eating cities – or at least it’s one of the first 10 U.S. cities to score its own Tasting Table city guide.

The daily e-mail publication, which emphasizes epicurean recommendations, this week released its round-up of local culinary must-dos (Full disclosure: I helped compile it, a process which included multiple camera-toting visits to Dave’s Carry-Out. I’m not complaining.) While you’re unlikely to find any surprises on the greatest hits list, it’s a handy link to share with visiting friends. If I do say so myself.

Desano Pizza, Caviar & Bananas, Charleston Beer Works Opening Airport Locations

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How’s that for pre-flight eats?/ Desano Pizza Bakery

While it’s likely small consolation to travelers flying in and out of Charleston this Christmas, the airport recently approved a plan to upgrade its eating-and-drinking options with eight new restaurants and kiosks, including locations of Charleston Beer Works, Desano Pizza Bakery and Caviar & Bananas.

Delaware North, a Buffalo, N.Y.-based hospitality management company, will also operate Harvest Grounds Bakery & Coffee, Jack Nicklaus Golden Bear Grille and Wendy’s.

Charleston International Airport spokeswoman Becky Beaman says all of the new outlets will be operating by the time the airport’s ongoing Terminal Redevelopment and Improvement Program is completed in 2015, although “you might see some of them coming online sooner than that.”

Delaware North this month posted a Craigslist ad seeking a general manager for the Charleston airport. Continue reading

Unsolicited Advice for Seeking Local Restaurant Advice

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Lest the following sound petulant, I want to emphasize at the outset how much I enjoy responding to reader requests for restaurant recommendations. As my grandmother might say, I don’t eat eight burgers a week for my health. The fun of exploring the local food scene is sharing what I find: I love trading tips with residents and helping visitors plot their Charleston dining adventures.

But it’s astounding how many e-mails don’t provide any details about what the writer’s seeking. “You probably get questions like this a lot, but it looks like there are many great restaurants in Charleston,” a correspondent wrote this morning. “Can you recommend any that would be within walking distance of the Embassy Suites near Marion Square?”

According to a downtown Charleston restaurant map I picked up at Tales of the Cocktail this summer, that narrows the choices down to about 107 eating places. I consider many of them pretty great, but I have no idea whether the writer and I have the same definition of greatness. He sounded like an awfully nice guy, so I’d hate to steer him wrong.

By contrast, another future visitor last week sent me his tentative dining agenda, along with the following guidelines for additional ideas: Continue reading

Halls Chophouse Wins TripAdvisor Fine Dining Award

hallschopThere are only five restaurants nationwide which provide a better fine dining experience than Halls Chophouse, according to TripAdvisor reviewers.

The downtown steakhouse today was listed sixth on the crowd-sourced website’s list of domestic “Travelers Choice” winners, sandwiched between Dallas’ The French Room and Virginia’s Inn at Little Washington. The top slot went to New York City’s Colicchio and Sons Main Dining Room, the only U.S. restaurant to also appear on the international winners list.

To qualify for the competition, restaurants must serve dinner and have a check average of at least $50 per guest. Continue reading