If the names of Charleston neighborhoods were based on their residents, Elliotborough — with its scads of skinny jeans-wearing, ironic facial hair-sporting folks — would definitely be Hipsterborough. Independent restaurants and unique boutiques keep this area on the cool kid's radar, so for this week's column, we explored the neighborhood after dark.
Wealth management firm Jericho Advisors hosted the opening reception for Jennifer Ervin's This Side of Summer show on Wednesday. The local artist's black-and-white photography capture glimpses of her family's idyllic Southern summers, giving us a welcome visual respite from the January weather that chilled the Lowcountry last week. Art supporters crowded the space in search of the aesthetic inspiration we've lacked since the end of the holidays. After the party, many scattered down the street to grab a slice at D'Allesandro's.
The next night, we wandered across Bogard Street for the Elliotborough Mini Bar's "Jerky Off." Dried meat enthusiast and bartender Ben Lucas invited patrons to bring their dehydrated creations to the bar and compete for best jerky. The small bar was packed when we arrived, and though we missed the awards being announced, we got word that the "People's Choice" winner may have had a few friends in the crowd to stuff the ballots. The jerky samples were laid out on the bar, and for $5, anyone could get their fill — the money was later donated to the Charleston Animal Society. Saving animals and eating others, all in the same night. The names of the creations were rather colorful: "Knock Knock Merguez Who," "Whisky Dick Boiler Maker," and "Circle Jerky" were among those that made us giggle. The establishment offered half-priced Quaddlebaums that evening, a wine cocktail/shooter. The after-party was held at Cutty's, just a few blocks down the street, but instead we cut through Percy Street to check out the shindig at Rogue Wave Surf Shop.
Owner Rhett Boyd had invited the Brooklyn-based band Pluto Moons to play at his store on Spring Street. RWSS caters to the hip downtown surfers so the crowd was dominated by tan, fit, and well-dressed college-age kids — we got the feeling that we'd stumbled into a vintage advertisement for surfboards. The party was BYOB, so many attendees shared cans of PBR with those in need. If you ever wondered what a mash-up of Passion Pit and the Allman Brothers would sound like, Pluto Moons is the band for you. We heard shouts of an after-party, but decided to call it a night when we realized we probably graduated college by the time most of the crowd was in elementary school. We like a good late-night throw down, but not when we're old enough to be the chaperone.