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Charleston City Guide

By: Janice McDonald

Charleston Restaurants Guide

©2006 Charleston CVB The Low Country Cuisine you'll find inCharleston has its roots in the centuries-old culinary traditions of the region.

Charlestonians love their food. You'll find a great mix with a heavy leaning toward seafood because of its location on the ocean. There's a unique style of cooking called "Low Country Cuisine" that harkens back to dishes that have been cooked in the region for centuries based on the vegetables and meats available. While here, you should have a plate of shrimp and grits or Hop N' John (rice, black-eyed peas, onions, and ham).

Robert's (182 East Bay St) is like no other restaurant around and requires planning ahead. The restaurant provides just one seating a night at 7:30 pm and Chef Robert Dickson will serenade you as your enjoy the delectable five-course meal.

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The Mobil Three-Star Cypress A Low Country Grille (167 East Bay St) is a little easier to get in with reservations, but also is one of the local favorites. Part of the fun here is enjoying some of their tableside creations like the garlic and herb rubbed rack of lamb.

For a bit of a Parisian experience in the heart of historic Charleston, try Rue de Jean (30 John St). You can't go wrong with anything on the menu, but if you are a fan of mussels, they have six different ways to prepare them.

The best contemporary Low Country Cuisine is at the Mobil Four-Star Charleston Grill (224 King St). Try the tradition Frogmore Stew, which includes shrimp, sausage, and corn and is an updated version of a traditional Low Country dish.

For some of the most creative seafood dishes on the Peninsula, try Coast Bar and Grill (39 D John St). Items like buffalo shrimp tacos or Carolina Lump Crab Cakes make for some excellent eating while live music plays.

For fresh seafood, venture over to Shem Creek Bar and Grill (508 Mill St, Mount Pleasant). You can just sit on the deck and watch people catch crabs, so you know the seafood you get here will be fresh.

No matter where you choose to dine, be aware that the average tipping rate is 15 percent. Parties of six or more are charged an 18 percent gratuity.

With so much to see in Charleston, how can you ensure that you do everything? Keep reading -- on the next page, we'll provide several suggested itineraries to help you hit the landmarks and locations that are most interesting to you.