Charleston Day I

I have to admit I got off the plane and went straight to eat.  I had a list; okay? Charleston history while rich and dramatic pales in comparison to its culinary, art and architecture offerings.  I started at Hominy Grill…highly touted for its Shrimp and Grits.

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Pardon my culinary confidence but I can do Shrimp and Grits at home.  I started with She Crab Soup and I wouldn’t even begin to compete with this.  Deliciously rich with that subtle hint of sherry that takes it over the top.  Of course, the cornbread didn’t hurt.  Then, instead of Shrimp and Grits I did the Pan Seared Chicken Livers with Country Ham Gravy…you heard me…I really should’ve gone to confession ’cause it was sinful.  The collards were good but the mac and cheese might be the best I’ve ever had.  And, the coleslaw was straight out of my mother’s kitchen.  She would “just be sick” if she knew what a difference red wine vinegar makes.

I spent the afternoon on King Street.  I needed to walk and walk a lot.  King Street in Charleston has everything that anyone could need for anything; antiques, art, fashion, food, beverage and on and on and on!!!

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The Michael Mitchell Gallery has a collection of home furnishings and art that I haven’t seen the likes of outside NYC.  This place has those pieces of furniture and art gives a home personality.  I found his use of color and texture extremely refreshing and the staff was genuinely pleasant.

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The old South is ever-present. I thought I might get this covered casserole for our next Supper Club and I seriously wanted the Deco Platter. Then I looked at the price and realized what all I could do with SEVENTY-SEVEN THOUSAND DOLLARS!!! No one ever said I didn’t have good taste!!!

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Steeples, spires and architectural pediments are to Charleston as concrete and pavement are to other cities.  There are elements of design everywhere you look.  Amazingly enough some of the buildings have dates on them notating they’ve been in America longer than America has been America…WOW!!!

Since I spent the afternoon walking it was fitting that I found a place for sustenance. Next on the list…The Ordinary.

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It was over top but I had to have it…Beef Carpaccio with Fried Oysters…deliciously decadent.

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I sat at the Raw Bar and thoroughly enjoyed watching these craftsmen at work. Their skill was amazing and the attention to detail refreshing.

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They eventually created my platter that was indeed a work of art.  Six oysters from Massachusetts, six from South Carolina, a dozen Littleneck Clams, Six delicate boiled shrimp and more Snow Crab Claws than I deserved.  I never thought I could have too much shellfish but I had to slow down and take my time.  It was truly a fabulous feast.

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I sat there for about two hours.  Just before I left I realized The Ordinary was once a bank and the kitchen is in what was the vault.  The Raw Bar was literally built around the vault door.

What an incredible day…everything was lovely and a good time will continue in the days to come.

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