It turns out that the Charleston area is virtually surrounded by water. It is in our culture, our blood and our way of life. We are water dwellers. We also love great food and a cold craft beer. Naturally, the marriage of dining, drinking and a great view of the harbor or the marsh is enough to whet our appetites.
Here are just a few of the wonderful options where you can kick back, have a cold one and let the sun do all the work.
Dining and Drinking on the Water in Charleston:
- Fleet Landing – 186 Concord Street, Charleston, SC – Right on the Charleston Harbor in downtown Charleston is the place to be if you want mouth-watering seafood, a glass of wine and a calm view of the harbor. If it is a casual evening of light appetizers, we highly recommend the chilled Blue Crab Dip, Stuffed Hush Puppies, Tuna and Salmon Tartare or the Friend Green Tomato Stack. These exceptional starters with a Pinot Noir or Riesling will make for a perfect evening on the water.
- Marina Variety Store and Restaurant – 17 Lockwood Drive, Charleston, SC – For many, this is a hidden gem right on the marina in downtown Charleston. Known for their open window views of the marina, excellent breakfast/dinner and warm staff (Steak Philly Omelet and Santa Fe Wrap are personal favorites), this is a great spot to watch the sailboats and enjoy some fried fish or a Eggs Benedict. Make sure you stop by Salty Mike’s on the lower level for a cocktail and some pool afterwards.
- Red’s Ice House – 98 Church Street, Mount Pleasant, SC – Nothing defines Shem’s Creek like Red’s. Dock your boat, park your car or bike and enjoy a bucket of cold ones. Whether you are on the deck or upstairs, you can let you cares run away and enjoy some Zac Brown Band while the day just passes by.
- The Stono Breeze – 2408 Maybank Highway, John’s Island, SC – As you leave James Island and head over the bridge to John’s Island, you will see The Stono Breeze to your right. This large white building with a huge outdoor deck is a tranquil escape from the fast paced Charleston city life. Make a right at the light and come in for a bit of a watery break. Note: The bugs are in a league of their own at this location so bring some spray. It is a local hangout, so you rarely have to worry about crowds.
- The Windjammer – 1008 Ocean Blvd, Isle of Palms – What can you say about The Windjammer. Kickin’ live music, bikini clad women, cold frosty beer and a good old southern beach environment. This is your benchmark for beach bars. Expect it to be loud and fun. Get to the deck overlooking the ocean and see where the day and night takes you.
Vickery’s Bar & Grill – 1313 Shrimp Boat Lane, Mount Pleasant, SC – In February 1999, Vickery’s opened on Shem’s Creek and for the last 17 years, have been offering up great seafood, incredible creek views and a family style kick back relaxed setting. Some places just give off good vibes. Vickery’s is one of those places. From Blackened Grilled Salmon to their Seared Crab Cakes, this restaurant knows seafood and with their second floor Shem Creek view, you are set for a memorable dining experience.
- Charleston Harbor Fish House – 32 Patriots Point Road, Mount Pleasant, SC – Where can you get solid food, a nautical theme, a view of the Charleston Harbor and a legendary view of the USS Yorktown (Let me tell you, when the sun sets over the Cooper River Bridge, wow). Come to the Charleston Harbor Fish House. Come for the Charleston Creole Shrimp and Grits or Cedar Plank Salmon and then go upstairs to the outdoor bar to watch the sunset.
- Charleston Crab House – 145 Wappoo Creek Drive, Charleston, SC – First things first: In the last two visits just before the sunset, I saw two dolphin sightings. If you are looking for dolphins, the creek side restaurant is a good bet. The steam pots and raw bar offer up some of the freshest area seafood. With boat docking and ample parking, you can come by water or road. The Crab House loves families and will cater to any size.
- Morgan Creek Grill – 80 41st Avenue, Isle of Palms Marina, SC – With a picturesque view of the Intracoastal Waterway, open outdoor settings perfect for Oyster Roasts, bonfires in the winter and live music, second floor bar area, traditional house decor restaurant and a truly isolated setting, Morgan Creek is a year long romantic dining getaway. Offering a warm traditional Southern feel, professional service and exceptional views, Morgan Creek Grill caters to couples, groups and families. From final waterfront dining to a casual Oyster Roast, there are options all year long.