For lunch the next day, we discovered Butcher & Bee, a delicious gourmet local-ingredient sandwich shop with a menu that changes daily. I inhaled my hummus toast, kale slaw & tomato onion salad. Don't you love the rustic vintage industrial decor? It reminded me of a place you'd find in Seattle.
For the rest of the day, we meandered along King Street, browsing boutiques, antique stores, and gift shops. Until the predicted heavy rains came down in sheets! We raced through the sopping streets to our hotel and cozied up indoors, opening the window and squealing with excitement as the thunder shook our room. We don't get storms like this on the west coast!
Our dinner that night was a special one at Fulton Lane Inn's sister restaurant, Circa 1886. We had reservations for a 3-course meal with wine pairings. Chef Marc Collins' creations were out of this world. My main course was heart of palm "marrow", with spinach, crispy fried onions, beluga lentils and grapefruit. Being a vegetarian in the south can be tricky. But I felt welcome and celebrated here.
The restaurant is located within the original carriage house of the Wentworth Mansion, a gorgeous historical property built in 1886. Before our meal, we were offered a champagne tour. We ascended a spiral staircase to the rooftop cupula to admire the 360 degree view of Charleston. Naturally, we sang a song in 4-part harmony, the same song we sung at the top of the Eiffel Tower many moons ago.
The next day, we rented a car and drove into the heart of lowcountry to visit the Charleston Tea Plantation, the only tea garden in the U.S. We boarded the little vintage trolley for a fascinating tour of their 127 acres of American Classic Tea.
At the gift shop, we rocked on the porch, sampled their teas and nibbled on boiled peanuts. My new snack obsession!
For lunch, the ladies at the tea plantation recommended Stono Market & Tomato Shed Cafe on John's Island. We couldn't have asked for better farm-fresh grub, cooked authentically southern with with heavy butter and cream. I got my mac n' cheese fix and their famous tomato pie. We wrote down a quote from our waitress, spoken in drawl:Firefly Distillery on Wadmalaw Island, where we sipped handcrafted vodkas, sweet tea bourbon and white lightning moonshine!
And then visited the infamous Angel Oak Tree. 500 hundred years strong.
My aunt, uncle and cousins, who recently moved from Seattle to Charleston, raved about the beaches and 70-degree ocean. Sold! We drove to Sullivan's Island and followed a quaint boardwalk leading us to the surf.
We called ourselves the Princesses of Tides. Appropriately named after our book.
After showering away the salt and sand, we enjoyed our final dinner at Husk, where we spilled our individual hopes and dreams for the next five years over geechie boy grits. And as we do at every meal, we gave a toast around the table using one letter of the alphabet. That night, we chose: H.
"To Hope. To Happiness. To Humor. To being Here together in Charleston... Heaven on earth."
OUR GIRLFRIEND GETAWAY IN CHARLESTON - PART 1
P.S. If you're interested in reading more about our South Carolina culinary adventures, Tiffany of Eat Your Heart Out LA, will be sharing mouth-watering meal posts in the next few days!