About Magnolias

185 East Bay Street
Charleston, SC 29401
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Igniting a culinary renaissance upon opening in 1990, Charleston's most popular restaurant is located at the site of the city's original Customs House (circa 1739). Led by chefs Don Drake and Kelly Franz, Magnolias remains a forerunner in upscale Southern cuisine, blending traditional ingredients and cooking techniques with a modern flair for artful presentations.

Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Southern, Low Country

Hours of Operation:
Lunch: Monday - Saturday starts at 11:30am
Dinner starts at 4:00 pm daily
Sunday Brunch starts at 10:00am

Cross Street:
located between Cumberland & Queen Streets

Dress Code:
Smart Casual

Price Range:
$31 to $50

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(843) 577-7771

Website:
http://www.magnoliascharleston.com/

Parking Details:
Private parking lot adjacent to the restaurant is available weekdays after 5:00pm & all day Saturday & Sunday. **Please note:This lot is not open during lunch Monday-Friday. However, public parking is available in the garage at the corner of Cumberland & Concord and rates will apply.

Public Transit:
Charleston CARTA to and from Visitors Center can be picked up 1/2 block from the restaurant on the quarter hour. There are also local cab companies and Charleston's famous Rickshaws that will transport guests to their hotels.

Executive Chef:
Kelly Franz

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Restaurant Photos

Magnolias
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buttermilk fried chicken
Pimiento Cheese
Hummingbird Cake
House Lager
Fried Green Tomatoes
Shellfish Over Grits
Spicy Shrimp And Sausage With Grits
Seafood & Grits w/sauteed Spinach
Fried Green Tomato B.L.T.
fried catfish sandwich
Pan Fried Pork Chops

Private Dining

Magnolia's private upper level dining rooms can be reserved for parties of 16 to 140 guests.

Magnolias Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.6

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.6

service

4.6

ambience

4.5

value

4.3

noise

Moderate

95% would recommend it to a friend

Loved For

Southern
South Carolina
Most Booked
South Carolina
Southern
Charleston
1 More
Most Booked
Charleston
Best Restaurants in Downtown Charleston ›

Special Occasion (376)
Fit for Foodies (347)
Romantic (254)
See All
Neighborhood Gem (187)
Great for Lunch (159)
Good for Groups (128)
Notable Wine List (126)
Great for Brunch (102)
Hot Spot (98)
Good for Anniversaries (59)
Good for a Date (56)
Creative Cuisine (42)
Historic (42)
Local Ingredients (39)
Kid-friendly (38)
Comfort Food (37)
Good for Birthdays (35)
Authentic (31)
Worth the Drive (27)
Business Meals (23)
Vibrant Bar Scene (22)
Quiet Conversation (22)
Late-night Find (19)
Cozy (17)
Fun (15)
Scenic View (14)
Handcrafted Cocktails (11)
Sunday Lunch (11)
Casual (11)
Bar Seating (10)
Pre/post Theatre (10)
People Watching (8)
Outstanding Value (7)
Tasting Menu (6)
Seasonal (6)
Good Vegetarian Options (4)
Healthy (4)
Open Kitchen (4)
Modern Decor (3)
Family Style (3)
Happy Hour (3)
Gluten Free Options (3)
Molecular Gastronomy (3)
Afternoon Tea (2)
Vegan (2)
Disabled Access (2)
Tapas (2)
Great for Outdoor Dining (2)
Paleo Friendly (2)
Spicy (1)
Organic (1)
Waterfront (1)
Fireplace (1)
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6569 reviews
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Our table was in waiters' path. Servi ...

 
 (New England)
·Dined 4 days ago

Our table was in waiters' path. Service was slow and our food, when it did arrive, was cold. Our waiter didn't come back to check on the food until we had eaten half the meal out of frustration and hunger.

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food2
ambience4
service1
value2

Great experience and meal.

vip
 (New Orleans)
·Dined 4 days ago

Great experience and meal.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5

We have been fans of Magnolia's for many ...

 
 (South Carolina)
·Dined 4 days ago

We have been fans of Magnolia's for many years. MaKe sure to ask for Eddie.

Tags: Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Creative Cuisine, Fun, Notable Wine List, Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Good for a Date, Tapas, Disabled Access, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Great food and wine selection. Service f ...

 
 (Detroit)
·Dined 5 days ago

Great food and wine selection. Service fair, front counter staff was rude and large party in back room where we sat overpowered the dinner.

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food4
ambience2
service2

Loved ever minute. Food was over the top ...

 
 (New York Area)
·Dined 5 days ago

Loved ever minute. Food was over the top! Explore, try new things. Forget the diet!

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food5
ambience5
service5

Can't say enough good things about Magno ...

 
 (New Orleans)
·Dined 5 days ago

Can't say enough good things about Magnolia. Great service, perhaps best seafood bisque ever,

as was the Ahi Tuna, really special. Outstanding desserts. All four of us concurred, one of our best meals ever with service to match

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Vibrant Bar Scene
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

Loved the southern fried mac n cheese!!! ...

 
 (South Carolina)
·Dined 5 days ago

Loved the southern fried mac n cheese!!!! Fried chicken was very good also. Will definetly go back next visit to Charleston!

Tags: Special Occasion, Romantic, Comfort Food, Historic, Good for Anniversaries
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

The food was decent but not great. Our s ...

vip
 (Chicago)
·Dined 5 days ago

The food was decent but not great. Our server seemed totally bored with his job and it showed in the way he dealt with us. I also had a water dripping on the table and when I mentioned it to the waiter he said OK and that was it. This restaurant is extremely loud especially in the back room where we were seated.

The saving grace was the pecan pie which was great. This is the last of six highly rated restaurants in Charleston that we ate at. We think it was the worst.

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food3
ambience2
service3

Celebrated 85th birthday with amazing si ...

 
 (Miami)
·Dined 5 days ago

Celebrated 85th birthday with amazing singing by chef at table. Excellent service. Flexible options allowed. Scallop small plate exceptional.

Tags: Good for a Date, Good Vegetarian Options, Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays
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food4
ambience5
service4
value4

Food and service was outstanding.

 
·Dined 6 days ago

Food and service was outstanding.

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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

As always Magnolias was a great experien ...

 
 (New York Area)
·Dined on September 19, 2016

As always Magnolias was a great experience for a business lunch. Great food, excellent service and ambience!!!!

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food5
ambience5
service5

Great restaurant-great food; great servi ...

 
 (Jacksonville)
·Dined on September 18, 2016

Great restaurant-great food; great service; great ambiance--highly recommend Magnolias

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Historic, Business Meals, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Staff was very good. Food was excellent. ...

 
 (South Carolina)
·Dined on September 18, 2016

Staff was very good. Food was excellent.back room nice and quiet.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Pre/post Theatre, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Casual, Quiet Conversation, Local Ingredients, Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Cozy, Good for Anniversaries, Creative Cuisine
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Great value during Restaurant Week. Choc ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on September 18, 2016

Great value during Restaurant Week. Chocolate peanut butter cake a real decadent indulgence!

Tags: Outstanding Value, Good for Birthdays, Special Occasion, Quiet Conversation
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food5
ambience4
service3
value4

Everything we ordered from the brunch me ...

 
 (South Carolina)
·Dined on September 18, 2016

Everything we ordered from the brunch menu was delicious. The French toast, the snapper, and even the ice cream. Free parking was a bonus. Will be back!

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Casual, Pre/post Theatre, Great for Brunch, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Food was well prepared and wait service ...

vip
 (New York Area)
·Dined on September 18, 2016

Food was well prepared and wait service very attentive. Southern staples potentially better across the street at SNOB. Host was very rude to me as a single diner which negatively impacted my experience.

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food4
ambience3
service4
value3

Brunch was excellent. Chicken fried stea ...

vip
 (Baltimore)
·Dined on September 18, 2016

Brunch was excellent. Chicken fried steak was to die for.

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food5
ambience5
service5

We have always loved Magnolias and broug ...

 
 (New York Area)
·Dined on September 18, 2016

We have always loved Magnolias and brought a friend who had never been to Charleston with us, he said it was one of our trip's highlights...and he also said its better than any New York City restaurant he has ever been to :)

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Business Meals, Fit for Foodies, Good for Birthdays, Neighborhood Gem, Creative Cuisine, Special Occasion, Local Ingredients, Worth the Drive, Good for Groups, Fun, Good for Anniversaries, Hot Spot, Outstanding Value
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

This is a definite must if you're visiti ...

vip
 (Cincinnati)
·Dined on September 18, 2016

This is a definite must if you're visiting Charleston and in the historic district. The menu is a great classic southern style with a bit of a modern twist to it. The fried green tomatoes and the southern egg rolls are the perfect way to start out dinner and really get you ready for the southern entrees. My husband went with the cornmeal dusted catfish and that turned out to be one of his favorite dishes on our trip to Charleston. It was the perfect southern dish to really set the mood for him to enjoy the south. I went with their Market Catch which was featuring a white fish for the evening. While I did really enjoy my dish, I was not as crazy about mine as my husband was about his - the grits and the fresh veggies are the two items I actually really enjoyed about the dish, whereas, the fish was definitely something I can get just about anywhere. The signature cocktails are also good and their wine list has some great options so you really cannot go wrong with whatever direction you want to take while eating at Magnolia's. Be sure to put this on the list of restaurants to try if you're visiting Charleston.

Tags: Authentic, Local Ingredients, Romantic, Quiet Conversation, Fit for Foodies, Vibrant Bar Scene, Handcrafted Cocktails, Bar Seating, Good for Anniversaries, Notable Wine List, Neighborhood Gem, Good for a Date, Hot Spot
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

I brought my mother here to celebrate he ...

 
 (South Carolina)
·Dined on September 17, 2016

I brought my mother here to celebrate her 70th Birthday. We are native Charlestonians and Magnolias has always been one of our favorite places. Edward was our server and he was a delight. Professional service and we loved his wit. Thank you for making this a special time we will remember.

Tags: Sunday Lunch, Historic, Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies, Great for Lunch
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

We had a great restaurant week menu with ...

 
 (South Carolina)
·Dined on September 17, 2016

We had a great restaurant week menu with wonderful service for our anniversary. Loved every bit of it.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Authentic, Good for a Date, Great for Lunch, Creative Cuisine
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

If I could give this place a simple gold ...

 
 (Detroit)
·Dined on September 17, 2016

If I could give this place a simple golden star instead of five to distinguish how wonderfully pleasing it was I would. It was such an experience and a true Charleston experience; classy, elegant, delicious and leaving you wanting more. I say this even being a vegetarian when usually even at 5 star places the vegetable option is mediocre. Our waiter was inviting and friendly and the meal will forever be in my dreams.

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food5
ambience5
service5

More fancy than flavour - banal food. To ...

 
 (New York Area)
·Dined on September 17, 2016

More fancy than flavour - banal food. Too expensive to what it is.

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food2
ambience4
service4
value1

After being made to wait to seat my part ...

 
 (South Carolina)
·Dined on September 17, 2016

After being made to wait to seat my party the service took along time, thefood was not great (alot of fat on my meat, dry), and the server under charged me then I had to wait 5 min for him to figure that out. Not worth 30 to 50 a plate.

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food2
ambience5
service3
value2

I was a bit disappointed where we were s ...

 
 (Atlanta)
·Dined on September 17, 2016

I was a bit disappointed where we were seated. I had made a note on the reservation that it was our anniversary. We were sat next to a bridal party of twelve. It was very loud and not what I had in mind for our anniversary dinner.

However, our dinner was wonderful.

Tags: Special Occasion
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food4
ambience4
service3
value4

I dined here while on a girls' weekend i ...

 
 (Phoenix)
·Dined on September 16, 2016

I dined here while on a girls' weekend in Charleston. The food, service & ambiance was outstanding! Will definitely go back the next time I am in Charleston!

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Worth the Drive, Comfort Food, Good for Groups, Local Ingredients, Cozy, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

Restaurant week special, NC trout, was e ...

 
 (South Carolina)
·Dined on September 16, 2016

Restaurant week special, NC trout, was excellent! Great food & service!

Tags: Good for a Date, People Watching, Molecular Gastronomy, Business Meals
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

The entire evening was fantastic. Highly ...

 
 (Cincinnati)
·Dined on September 16, 2016

The entire evening was fantastic. Highly recommend for a great evening out!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

The best homemade pimento cheese spread ...

 
 (Atlanta)
·Dined on September 16, 2016

The best homemade pimento cheese spread the waiter kindly brought us a small sample! Fried green tomatoes on top of grits with Carmelized onions. That could have been my entree! Ordered the fried chicken breast. Was dry. Shared the creme brûlée that was awesome.

Tags: Great for Lunch, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

We had a lovely dinner at Magnolia's. We ...

 
 (St. Louis)
·Dined on September 15, 2016

We had a lovely dinner at Magnolia's. We made an early reservation because we had our 19-month with us. Our waiter was great! And many other waiters working close by were great as well! We understand that this isn't necessarily a first-choice for family dining...I think it would be an excellent date night location--or even friends night, etc--that being said, they are very accommodating to young children (kids' menu, high chairs). They brought our daughter's food out with our appetizer as well, which I appreciate.

Our food was good. It wasn't knock-your-socks-off GREAT. But it was very good.

All told, we spent about two hours here, so again, I know this isn't marketed as a kids' restaurant, but it wasn't ideal with the babe along.

I would recommend for a date night or couples' night out. Without children. We did have a good time with our baby, but I think if you have a choice, you should leave kiddos at home with a sitter.

Tags: Fun, Good for a Date, Historic, Creative Cuisine, Handcrafted Cocktails, Neighborhood Gem
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food4
ambience3
service4
value3

Excellent service and food. Very nice st ...

vip
 (Houston)
·Dined on September 15, 2016

Excellent service and food. Very nice staff restaurant was packed what did Yogi say "no one goes there anymore the waits too long" recommend highly

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food5
ambience5
service5

Excellent food and excellent service! L ...

vip
 (San Francisco)
·Dined on September 14, 2016

Excellent food and excellent service! Loved it!

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food5
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service5

Magnolias is always on the list when vis ...

 
 (Virginia)
·Dined on September 14, 2016

Magnolias is always on the list when visiting Charleston.

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food4
ambience5
service5

We went to Magnolia's while visiting Cha ...

 
 (Philadelphia)
·Dined on September 13, 2016

We went to Magnolia's while visiting Charleston. Had a lovely dinner! Noise level was just right. Ambiance terrific! I had the seafood and grits and crab bisque. Had never had grits in my life, but these were delicious prepared with the lobster sauce. My husband had the same entree and the soup. He also enjoyed his meal. We split the pineapple rum cake! Wonderful meal and great service!

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Good for Birthdays, Quiet Conversation, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Cozy
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

A delicious meal. Restaurant Week do a g ...

 
 (Virginia)
·Dined on September 12, 2016

A delicious meal. Restaurant Week do a good value too.

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food5
ambience3
service3
value4

Great meal, attentive staff, and a wonde ...

 
 (Philadelphia)
·Dined on September 12, 2016

Great meal, attentive staff, and a wonderful atmosphere. Highly recommended.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Delicious food. Came in for restaurant w ...

 
 (South Carolina)
·Dined on September 11, 2016

Delicious food. Came in for restaurant week, but upon arrival made aware Sunday's are not part of restaurant week. That could've been placed in restaurant week advertising. You don't have to dress up for this place.

Tags: Great for Brunch, Special Occasion, Good for a Date
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food5
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service5
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Visited Magnolia's for Sunday Brunch and ...

 
 (Wilmington)
·Dined on September 11, 2016

Visited Magnolia's for Sunday Brunch and Lunch on separate occasions. The service was good, not outstanding. We waited quite a while for our first course which was soup. Waiter forgot the soup, then brought a cup when we ordered a bowl. He did apologize and said the soup would be on him which I thought was a very nice gesture. The food was very good and creative although one of our dishes was not hot and wonder if it was because the food was ready when we were brought our soup. All in all it was a good experience and the food was very good. I would definitely recommend and return.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Great for Brunch, Authentic, Great for Lunch
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food4
ambience3
service3
value3

Great service. Attentive and professiona ...

vip
 (South Carolina)
·Dined on September 11, 2016

Great service. Attentive and professional. Great looking restaurant with really good looking interior. Food was fabulous.

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food5
ambience5
service5

Excellent meal. Magnolia's was highly r ...

 
 (New England)
·Dined on September 11, 2016

Excellent meal. Magnolia's was highly recommended to us and it did not disappoint. Will go there again on my next trip to Charleston.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

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