When you come for the expert spinal care at the Southeastern Spine Institute (SSI) in Charleston, South Carolina, stay for lunch before heading home again. If you’re staying in town for an extensive treatment, head out one day for a memorable mid-day culinary experience. This seaside city is known as a foodie destination, so it’s hard to wrong. But here are a few recommendations for the best places to get lunch in Charleston:
Here’s a twist: a restaurant that’s only open for lunch (11:00 to 3:00) and for late-night snacks (8:00 to 1:00). The menu changes daily, but you’ll always find something you’ll like or something new to try. Because they specialize in lunch in Charleston (although they also have a location in Nashville, Tennessee), they feature hot and cold sandwiches, soups, sides and salads. Their motto is: “Your sandwich is in good hands.”
This café has two locations for lunch in Charleston, so you know the food has to be good. The owners, a husband-and-wife team, make their foods from scratch every day, and they proudly display their salads and desserts in the showcase counter. Order a fresh sandwich, homemade soup or a lunch entrée made daily. Caviar & Bananas is the go-to lunch spot for many locals. Join the fun.
An unusual name for a restaurant, to be sure, but it’s the Vietnamese word for “feast.” So if you’re in the mood for something outside the normal soup-salad-sandwich thing, try the Asian fusion food at CO. Start with an order of beef and kimchi dumplings, and then try their wings or rolls. Or skip to the full-sized salads. You can also find noodle dishes, rice dishes, entrées and desserts. You can’t leave hungry.
Here’s a local treat: a full-service restaurant focused on gourmet delights, but moderately priced for lunch in Charleston. Their dishes are so exquisite, the menu alone will make your mouth water. Try the mesclun fried goat cheese salad, fried green tomatoes, lemon caper shrimp pasta or turkey and brie sandwich. Cru Café is a little more expensive, but if you think you deserve it, you do.
The owner is Maudell “Dell” Grayson, and she puts love into every wrap and salad she serves. The list of available wraps is a mile long, and you may want to try every one. The Big Daddy barely contains your choice of three meats; the Beach Bum features spicy shrimp; and the Hummer is filled with black bean hummus. Support a Charleston tradition at Dell’z Deli.
This inexpensively priced restaurant serves lunch in Charleston from 11:00 to 5:00, but they also have a location right in Mount Pleasant. Just a 12-minute drive from the SSI campus, Five Loaves offers sandwiches, salads and soups that are always fresh and delicious. For example, consider their hot ham and brie sandwich served with green tomato jam and mustard slaw. They also offer vegetarian and gluten-free options.
It’s truth in advertising: this restaurant serves French food quickly. You can have one of the daily lunch specials or try “something very French,” such as cheeses, meats and breads. While their specialties revolve around simple French cuisine, they do offer vegetarian options. You can get breakfast all day because nothing’s more French than a ham-and-cheese croissant and a French-pressed coffee in the afternoon.