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Pizza is pretty much delicious, no matter how you slice it, but these pies deserve special notice.
Eggy & Leggy Pizza at Mellow Mushroom
$11 10-inch, $19 14-inch, $24.50 16-inch
Who doesn't eat pizza for breakfast? But why not eat a breakfast pizza for dinner? This delicious oil and garlic base pie is topped with pancetta, sunny-side-up eggs, fresh scallions, and cracked black pepper. It's a sure crowd pleaser.
Pork Trifecta at EVO Pizza
$12 8-inch, $14 12-inch
Three layers of meat — housemade sweet sausage, pepperoni, smoked bacon — combined with fresh mozzarella and red sauce on top of a wood-fired crust makes for a worthy challenge. Eat three of them and you're a bona fide hero.
The Chauncinator at D'Allesandro's
$8.75, $13.50, $17.50
Any pizza with a double dose of pepperoni deserves a place in your heart. Add fresh mozzarella, basil, and red sauce and a delicious New York-style crust and you've got a pizza that deserves a place on this list.
What's a food list without burgers? Probably the most controversial topic in all of eaterdom, burgers have rabid fans (and detractors). Here's our list for ones worth eating in town.
The Cheeseburger at Husk
As soon as Chef Sean Brock's burger debuted, it reached legendary status, which means we couldn't very well have a list of Charleston's most famous and beloved dishes without including this burger — a double-pattied, smoky, cheesy mess of goodness. You can find it at the Husk bar at dinner time and in the restaurant at lunch.
The Memphis Burger at Sesame
Bacon, peanut butter, banana, and beef? Sounds like something Elvis would love. It's a crazy combo that tastes amazing.
Hop Frog Burger at Poe's
Why is the Hop Frog better than, say, the Black Cat (with chili, onions, bacon, and pimento cheese) or the Tell-Tale Heart (with a fried egg, bacon, and cheddar cheese)? Hard to say. No matter which burger, Poe's buns are perfectly soft yet sturdy, and if you order it medium rare, the beef patty is reliably pink in the middle. The Hop Frog's bacon, BBQ sauce, and Monterrey Jack cheese strike just the right balance of traditional and edgy, and when you top it off with handcut fries and a cold COAST IPA you have a Saturday lunch to treasure.
The Barnyard Burger at Rita's
Served on an English muffin, the Barnyard comes stacked with bacon, cheese, and a fried egg. It's a breakfast sandwich with an extra helping of meat, which is perfect for a hangover day or any day you want a hearty, greasy treat. Luckily, Rita's opens at 10 a.m.
BBQ Buffalo Burger at Fuel
When you think of bison burgers, it's usually in the context of some overdone, smarmy joint focused on all the wrong attributes of a genuine good time. But Fuel serves it low-brow, with a sweet slaw and a bit of mango ketchup. It goes exceedingly well with cold beer and bocce on the back deck.
The Wilbur at Triangle Char and Bar
It's a big fat slab of pork belly — and we mean big, fat, and intrusive — slapped on top of a burger. Need we say more?
Any Half-Price Burger at Moe's Tavern
They had half-price burger night on Tuesdays long before anyone else, and it's a local rite of passage to find your way to Moe's and squeeze yourself into the crowds and chow down on one of their delicious burgers (we like the roasted poblano and goat cheese).
California Burger at A.C.'s Bar and Grill
The hamburgers at A.C.'s are always well seasoned, but the California burger, topped with green olives, is one of Chucktown's best. It's even better than their Grand Ma burger — and that's saying something.
We could've made an entire list of 101 beguiling sweets, but instead we limited ourselves to just eight. The crème de la crème, as they say.
Chocolate Croissant and French Press Coffee at G&M/Fast & French
$2.90 croissant $1.50 coffee
There's no better way to start a Charleston morning than with a flaky, warm croissant filled with half-melted chocolate and a cup or two of dark, rich coffee made in a French press.
The Coca-Cola Cake at Jestine's Kitchen
We might mock tourists for standing in line in 110-degree weather to eat at Jestine's Kitchen, but we've got to admit that the fried chicken, cornbread, and sweet tea are pretty darn good. And then there's the Coca-Cola Cake, a classic Southern recipe that the eatery has perfected. The super moist cake has a mild chocolate flavor and is topped with sticky chopped pecans and whipped cream. Be sure to save room for it when you're playing tourist-in-your-own-town.
Sticky Buns at WildFlour
WildFlour owner and pastry chef Lauren Mitterer is a terrible tease — she insists on making her addictive sticky buns available only one day a week. Stop by the Spring Street bakery on Sundays between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. and choose between a bun with caramelized pecans or one with cream cheese frosting — or both. You might want to save one for later in the week when you need your sticky bun fix.
Macaroons from Macaroon Boutique
There's something about the texture of a macaroon that is more perfect than the most perfect cookie or brownie. It's delicate but toothsome, creamy and just a touch crispy, and perfectly indulgent. Flavors include chocolate, pistachio, and vanilla, but opt for the raspberry.
Lavender Gelato at Paolo's Gelato
Like some mad culinary genius, Paolo Dalla Zorza consistently churns out both classic and inventive flavors of gelato, from Stracciatella to simple strawberry. Be sure to try the lavender if you get the chance — it's unexpectedly sweet and earthy.
Beet Ice Cream from Roots Ice Cream
@RootsIceCream. Charleston Farmers Market and various events
Bright magenta in color, earthy in flavor, the beet ice cream is the shining example of what gourmet, seasonal ice cream can be. The other flavors are nice too, but this one stands out as particularly swell.
Earl Grey Tea Painted Chocolate from Christophe Artisan
Christophe's hand-painted chocolates are all so beautiful that you hardly want to bite into them. Keep an eye out for the bright blue flat dome with the little white flakes: the dark chocolate ganache inside is laced with Earl Grey tea in a luxurious blend of dark, sweet mystery.
Chocolate Sea Salt Popsicle from King of Pops
The texture of a Jell-O pudding pop, the chocolate sea salt popsicle is so good it will have you chasing this popsicle cart all over the Lowountry.
Did we neglect to include one of your favorite dishes? Leave it in the comments.