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The Royal American serves up stellar music, boozy punches, and solid bar bites, with a few standouts

Ruta Smith

Restaurant Reviews

The Royal American serves up stellar music, boozy punches, and solid bar bites, with a few standouts

Dive Bar Royalty

by Vanessa Wolf

Let's get one thing straight: The Royal American is a self-aware, quirky dive bar of the highest order. Calling it effortlessly cool is probably going a bit too far, as obviously a lot of effort has gone into curating the idiosyncratic relics, but it's got a hip, self-effacing vibe that's hard to resist. Keep reading...


Architectural Digest names Vintage Lounge most beautiful bar in the state

Gold-leaf got us like

by Connelly Hardaway

As if this city didn't have enough accolades already, Architectural Digest has named wine bar, Vintage Lounge, the most beautifully designed bar in the state of South Carolina. Hip, hip.

How the Matzo Y Masa pop-up was born from two Charleston chefs' free time

Think chickpea and egg chilaquiles

by Mary Scott Hardaway

Working in a professional kitchen is all about compromise. Compromising time (yes, I'll take this shift), compromising space (I'll just prep over here), and compromising vision (your special ribeye tonight, my special crudo tomorrow). It means working long hours, smelling faintly of cooking oil at all times, and flexing your creative culinary muscles — to an extent.

Come next year you could be drinking blue wine at NICO

Allez le bleu!

by Connelly Hardaway

I drank blue wine last night. No, I was not at a frat party. I was actually at respectable French spot, NICO. The Coleman Boulevard restaurant, with owner and Chef Nico Romo at the helm, just celebrated a year of Scotch oysters, fire roasted fish (my order, if you're wondering), and pommes frites. And now, Romo's ready to leap into the future with the promise of le vin bleu.

Stems & Skins shares tips for how to celebrate the holidays ... with tinned seafood

Not your average chicken of the sea

by Mary Scott Hardaway

The Stems & Skins crew wants you to forgo the pigs in a blanket and sad artichoke dip this year. Here are their tips for an at-home holiday happy hour spread that will have your out of town guests saying, "incroyable!"

One80 Place hosts sixth annual turkey and a $20 drive Tues. Nov. 20

Give a little gobble

by Mary Scott Hardaway

Help your neighbors take part in a feast of their own this year with One80 Place's annual Turkey & A $20 drive. From 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Tues. Nov. 20 drive through One80 (35 Walnut Street) and drop off turkeys plus donations. The more you give, the more the nonprofit will get: this year, donors have committed to giving $20,000 if One80 Place can raise $30,000. Help them reach their goal of raising $50,000 and collecting 500 turkeys.

A peek at 2019 High Water Festival 'experiences' off stage before they're on sale Thursday at 10 a.m.

Pass the Peas, Oyster Education, and Low Tide social

by Mary Scott Hardaway

Go for Leon Bridges, stay for the Seaborn Oyster Co. led bivalve education class and learn about the intricacies of oyster farming whilst humming "River." High Water Festival 2019 promises plenty of opportunity to eat your way around Riverfront Park, for a small additional fee. After that initial $150 buy-in, may as well round out the weekend with all the experiences you can handle, right?

Bread + Butter brings top chefs into local high school culinary programs

In the Kitchen

by Mary Scott Hardaway

Tomorrow, Thurs. Nov. 15, the official launch of local nonprofit Bread + Butter will kick off with a series of fundraising events running through the end of the year.

Basic Kitchen hosts a "Very Basic Thanksgiving " dinner on Turkey Day eve

Worry free, fancy-full

by Mary Scott Hardaway

Your in-laws are slowly but surely invading your pantry, your nieces and nephews have all but destroyed the dining room — you can't serve a turkey in a blanket fort, unfortunately — and your wine supply is dwindling faster than you could ever have anticipated. It's the holidays, y'all, and we all need a break from close-quarter family time every once in a while. Grab your crazy fam and get them out of the house Wed. Nov. 21, Thanksgiving Eve, for Basic Kitchen's Very Basic Thanksgiving feast.

Bertha's Kitchen and FIG once again named among Eater's 38 Essential American restaurants for 2018

"The engines of connection we need in these fractured times"

by Mary Scott Hardaway

Eater restaurant editor and national critic Bill Addison's list of "America's 38 Essential Restaurants" for 2018 was announced today; the list was first started in 2015. In order to choose which of all the seafood, barbecue, tapas, ethnic, modern American — the delineations go on — eateries in the country were the best of the best, Addison had to do some eating. Lots of eating.

Tis' the season for birthday parties: five area restaurants (and one brewery) celebrate another year around the sun

Put your party pants on

by Mary Scott Hardaway

Sure there's the turkey tradition, and then we have the melange of December holidays: Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza, mass commercialization of poor, tired Santa Claus. All that holly jolly spirit really sets the tone for birthday parties, though, and there are quite a few anniversaries worth celebrating around town. Light one up (a candle, we mean!) for these establishments in the next few weeks:

Swig & Swine hosts Trophy Lakes oyster roast Sun. Dec. 9

Steamed and swine

by Lauren Hurlock

What's better than a crisp fall day at Trophy Lakes and all you can eat oysters, a barbecue buffet, live music, helicopter rides, bouncy castles and axe throwing? There's all that and more at the Johns Island Oyster Roast on Sunday, Dec. 9.

Chefs Leila and Italo Marino talk red sauce nights, pop-up popularity, and cooking outside

From embers to ashes

by Mary Scott Hardaway

The concepts that involve a chef or chefs dragging their ovens and cutting boards and blenders and serving utensils and tablecloths east of the Cooper and back, borrowing kitchens or making their own cooking space wherever they end up.

Moe's Crosstown celebrates 20 years of burgers on Sat. Nov. 17

Bunderful!

by Mary Scott Hardaway

Celebrate 20 years of bad ass beef (and the people behind the scenes) next Sat. Nov. 17 at Moe's Crosstown starting at 5 p.m

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