Charleston SC/Savannah GA possibilities, no car
Will be visiting both Savannah (for ca 2 days) and Charleston (for ca 3 days) in the foreseeable future and would like some thoughts on some possibilities I've researched. Am especially interested in local specialties (Low Country and Southern cuisine). Will not have a car, will be staying in the Historic District areas of both cities, and would like to avoid dicey parts of town.
Savannah: have seen consistent praise for Mrs. Wilkes and very mixed thoughts on The Lady and Sons here. What little I've seen re Belford's, Wall's, Olde Pink House, and Shrimp Factory has been positive. Mrs. Wilkes opens at 11 AM (lunch only) and seems to be really popular -- is there such a thing as a slow day there, and how far ahead of 11 AM should I be there if I go?
Charleston: comments seem to be all over the place here. The one constant is that everyone seems to like SNOB and nobody seems to like Jestine's or Hyman's. Hominy Grill seems mostly positive with a few dissenters, while Magnolia's and 82 Queen seem to draw wide differences of opinion. Have seen nothing regarding A.W. Shucks.
Any other spots I should be considering?
You've probably seen nothing regarding AW Shucks because the place isn't worth the time it takes to type. Horrible food served in a complete tourist trap. I'd eat at Hyman's before I'd eat at Shucks, and that's pretty darn bad.
I'm an 82 Queen fan from way back, but I'll admit that not everything there is stellar. Stick with the she crab soup. SNOB is great and really shouldn't be missed. I've also generally liked Magnolia's, although the last time we went (November 08) it seemed to have lost a bit of its lustre.
I'm a Savannah guy and I'll mos' def recommend Mrs. Wilkes over The Lady. It's the real, genuine old-timey Savannah boarding house deal. You are going to stand in line at either place, but you'll be better rewarded by the food at Mrs. Wilkes.
Wall's is interesting, I guess, but it's really just a little shack of a place down an alley and I'm not sure that it's THE BEST BBQ on the planet or anything like that. Go for lunch and take your sammich outside to eat on a bench in one of the squares.
The Olde Pink House really is a nice place to have drinks and a dinner.
Before I went to the Shrimp Factory, I might think about Garibaldi's or Savannah Bistro on Congress Street, Vic's on the River, B Mathews on Bay, or Noble Fare. Especially Noble Fair. If you want to try the best Savannah has to offer, catch a cab to Elizabeth on 37th and have them get you a cab back to your hotel. I mention the cab because E'sa little bit out of the downtown core and some people consider the neighborhood "dicey," although I've never been bothered walking in that neighborhood.
There's a local place called Express Deli and Bakery on Barnard just south of Congress that is a great place for breakfast and lunch - one of my favorite non-fancy places downtown. For breakfast, I like to get a toasted bagel with cream cheese and lox, topped with a slice of raw onion, a slice of tomato, and capers - but that's just me, they have other stuff too, including some wicked good freshly-baked crusty breads, croissants, etc. For lunch they have quiches and salads and sammiches, including one of the great sammiches of all time, goat cheese, roasted red peppers, and pesto on a panini-style grilled flatbread. Man is that good? Get the hell outta here, LOL!
I do get over to my beautiful sister city from time to time, and yes, do go to SNOB. Another place I like a lot is a little to the north and I think a street over - that would be Fig. Hominy Grill is one of those places that always leaves me going "HUNHH???" The food always struck me as decent but nothing I ever felt all rapturous about. Funny, meh?