Going out to eat isn't always about cravings. Often enough, mealtimes dictate our choices, limiting restaurant possibilities. When circumstances narrow the options, let 10Best help. We'll direct you to the best Brunch restaurants in Charleston and save you the hassle of calling around for business hours. 10Best readers find much to enjoy at Hominy Grill thanks to its all-around good offerings. It's also hard to beat Saffron Café & Bakery, which serves just what you're looking for when you're in the market for a great Brunch.

The Boathouse
Practically any Charlestonian can attest to the fact that this restaurant is a local favorite. The Boathouse offers casual dining and one of the most spectacular sunset views imaginable. The food is special, too, with an emphasis, of course, on Lowcountry seafood. The restaurant is extremely popular with both locals and tourists, so expect long waits. Best time to go is in the off season! (843-886-8000)

Slightly North of Broad
Frank Lee prepares the best regional fare in the open kitchen of this local favorite. Casual yet sophisticated, the restaurant has earned accolades from just about every regional and national gourmet publication. Select a premium vintage from their impressive wine list to accompany a delightful Southern entrée like grilled dolphin glazed with pesto on a bed of tomatoes, grilled beef tenderloin with green-peppercorn sauce, topped with a deviled crab cake, or honey-and-sesame-crusted sea bass with roasted beets. (843-723-3424)

Once the site of the Charleston's original Customs House, Magnolias is a downtown restaurant intent on showcasing its deep Southern roots. Chef Don Drake's commitment to adding worldly spice to old Southern flavors sets Magnolias apart from all other coastal fine dining. The modern presentation of homegrown dishes like the Down South Egg Roll, or the Buttermilk Fried Chicken, cleverly appeals to all tastes. Entrees such as the Shellfish Over Grits, which introduces lobster to traditional Shrimp 'n Grits, are accompanied with sides of Carolina Dirty Rice, Creamed Corn, and Collard Greens. Dinner reservations recommended; Sunday Brunch offered 10 a.m. - 3:45 p.m. (843-577-7771)

Hominy Grill
Hominy Grill, at home in a historic 19th century house, features a giant wall mural of waitress "Rosie" serving up a steaming bowl of grits. James Beard Award winning chef Robert Stehling serves up classic southern staples for lunch, dinner, and Sunday brunch, like the Catfish Sandwich, Pecan Crusted Pork Chop, and quite possibly the best Shrimp & Grits in all of Charleston. An addition was completed in summer of 2011 to add a full bar and courtyard, making long waits a little easier. Very popular with locals and visitors alike, be prepared to wait, especially during Sunday brunch hours. (843-937-0930)

82 Queen
Enjoy Lowcountry cuisine in a historic area. Menu offerings include award-winning she-crab soup laced with sherry, charcoal-grilled spicy oysters with sesame and soy sauce, a traditional Carolina bouillabaisse, New Orleans-style shrimp-and-chicken gumbo with andouille sausage and okra, and crab cakes with sweet pepper and basil rémoulade sauce. Still hungry? Well then the bourbon pecan pie is not to be missed. Outdoor dining is always pleasant here. (843-723-7591, 800-849-0082)

Barbadoes Room
Located in the historic Mills House Hotel, the Barbadoes Room offers an upscale dining experience . Enjoy Southern specialties such as pan-fried Lowcountry crab cakes, grilled salmon glazed with honey jalapeño sauce, pork tenderloin with curried fruit compote, blackened shrimp and scallops with grit cakes, and ginger-encrusted tuna with apple relish. For dessert, the mud pie can't be missed. (843-577-2400, 800-874-9600)

Saffron Café & Bakery
Popular Saffron Café & Bakery serves some of Charleston's best Mediterranean cuisine. Not to be missed is the roasted lamb stewed with cilantro and parsley and served with saffron rice. Nibble on a wide selection of muffins, cookies, and chocolates while sipping on gourmet coffees and teas. Dine in or take it out — just be sure to check out the imported food products from around the world. (843-722-5588)

High Cotton
Dine on inventive Nouvelle cuisine in a place that really gives you the Charleston feel with its potted palms, ceiling fans and mahogany shutters. Starters such as buttermilk-fried oysters with arugula and Green Goddess dressing are sure to please the palate. For mains you can't go wrong with BBQ-spiced Carolina trout or bourbon-glazed Eden Farm pork with white cheddar jalapeno grits. At brunch, meanwhile, there's the shrimp and lobster crêpe or the BBQ duck hash, and you haven't lived until you've sampled High Cotton's heavenly praline soufflé. Their bar boasts several wines by the glass, great cocktails and nightly live music. (843-724-3815)

Fat Hen
Perennially busy, this casual cafe offers a host of delicious dishes any time of day. Sunday morning is an especially good time to stop by for a brunch that features omelets, créme brûlée french toast and crab cake benedict. (843-559-9090)

39 Rue de Jean
This appealing brasserie practically recreates Paris in the Lowcountry. Its warm decor, zinc bar, and even an outdoor terrace speak of Gallic comforts, and the food follows suit beautifully. Traditional — and affordable! — fare includes such classics as steak frites, steamed mussels, duck confit, escargots, and bouillabaisse. A great burger is also a strong draw. Plus, the bar scene is a lively event, as folks gather amiably to indulge in a cocktail, a terrific bottle of wine, or simply to people-watch from the patio. (843-722-8881)

Maps and Directions

The Boathouse 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Seafood, Southern
Neighborhood: Isle Of Palms
Cost: $$
Slightly North of Broad 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Local Specialty, New American, Southern
Neighborhood: Downtown
Cost: $$
Magnolias 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Local Specialty, New American, Seafood, Southern
Neighborhood: Downtown
Cost: $$
Hominy Grill 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Diner, Local Specialty, Southern
Neighborhood: Downtown
Cost: $
82 Queen 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Local Specialty, Southern
Neighborhood: Downtown
Cost: $$
Barbadoes Room 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Local Specialty, Southern
Neighborhood: Downtown
Cost: $$
Saffron Café & Bakery 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Bakery, European, Mediterranean
Neighborhood: Downtown
Cost: $
High Cotton 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Continental, Regional, Southern
Neighborhood: Downtown
Cost: $$
Fat Hen 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, European, French, Seafood, Southern
Neighborhood: Johns Island
Cost: $$
39 Rue de Jean 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: European, French
Neighborhood: Downtown
Cost: $$
comments powered by Disqus