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.
Charleston, SC 29401
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
located between Cumberland & Queen Streets
$31 to $50
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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.
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.
Banquet, Bar Dining, Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine
Magnolia's private upper level dining rooms can be reserved for parties of 16 to 140 guests.
Magnolias Ratings and Reviews
We had an excellent server(Coco) who helped us pick some great appetizers and an amazing entree. We started with the egg rolls, do it, they're great. For entrees one of us had the catfish and the other the fried green tomato small plate. Both were pure heaven to eat.
After reviewing the menu, we opted for a bevy of small plates instead of an appetizer and main course. The waiter was helpful in selecting and scheduling the dishes. We started with fried green tomatoes and the fried chicken livers. While the tomatoes were tasty - the livers were excellent. Crips on the outside and soft and "earthy" on the inside. Next we enjoyed fried oysters (the special of the evening) and crab bisque. The oysters were the star of the evening - garnished with sweet corn relish. The bisque was eh and way too salty. We did not finish our cup of soup. Finally - we had smoked pork belly and seared sea scallops. The scallops were delicious. The port belly, while tasty, was too dry.
Looking over our shoulders the main course looked very nice - the most popular was the fried chicken and the special, sauteed flounder. I liked our approach to test the range of dishes available! We both had house punches (one peach and one bourbon) - both cold and tasty.
Sevice was good - the waiter was pleasant and helpful, but he clearly was bored with his job. The ambiance was very nice. more formal, but not stuffy. Dress in Charleston is casual!
Food was good. I love that they have a kids menu for our son.
It took a while for them to seat us even if we had reservations which made them lose points with me. The table we got was right next to the bar so it was a little to noisy and there's too much traffic for me.
Our kids loved the mussels and scallops appetizers. We all liked our main entrees, we got shrimp and grits, beef ribs, catch of the day. The sides we got wasn't that interesting specially the mashed potatoes. They were too bland. Overall, I would recommend the food.
Magnolia's has been the most consistent in food quality/food preparation/service & good atmosphere for the 7 1/2 we've lived here. Even through a change in chefs...the quality is and has always been there. The blue point crab soup was divine...and the duck was succulent, as it has always been. My friend had shrimp & grits(as she has many time previously) and said it was excellent. The deserts...well, the pecan pie al la mode...yes...decadent & divine ! Keep up the good work ! It IS very much appreciated.
We enjoyed eating here. The scallops were very good. My only suggestion would be for the vegetable plate they offer have something other than fried items. Steamed carrots, spinach, green beans would have been wonderful. Other than that the food was great and the service was spot on.
I was a little dissatisfied with the main dish I ordered. It was a special occasion with my girl friend whose from out of the state. We ordered the tuna dish and asked it for a medium done but it was very well done for both of us. Other than that, the food was very delicious the service was great, and the atmosphere was wonderful and clean as always!
Very disappointed Magnolias has gone the way of a tourist stop. We have lived in the Low country for 15 years, and Magnolias has always been a solid choice. No more!
Try: Hominy gill for BF
Try: Cru, or SNOB for lunch
Try: Peninula grill for Dinner
These still have Chahahrleston written all over them !
Excellent choice and the food and service is outstanding. The wait staff is professional and knowledgeable. We were pleased with every aspect of our dining experience and look forward to a return trip. Thanks for all your work to make the evening wonderful. We are also most impressed with your reservation program and the reminder.
Vacationing in Charleston we knew we had to eat at Magnolias. We made our reservations a month in advance and looked forward to our reservation the entire month. We were not disappointed. Probably the best buttermilk fried chicken I have tasted in a restaurant. The seared ahi tuna and shrimp and grits were also amazing. Plan ahead and enjoy.
Food was better than service.
Knew they could do better....missed on getting first round of drinks out before finishing appetizers. Didn't get order quite right and didn't stop back to check after runner delivered. By dessert, we deserted.
There's a lot of effort/energy by many and evidently quite capable but regrettably for our visit, not a home run.
Magnolia's is on of my all time favorite Charleston restaurants. I try to get there several times a year, usually when friends or family are in town and I want to show them the best of Charleston. Great meals at a great price and the service is wonderful. They treat you like a high end restaurant, the fool is like a high end restaurant, but the prices are very reasonable,
My husband and I went to Magnolia's for dinner while vacationing in Charleston. Our waiter, Ed, was extremely friendly and was able to describe the menu options amazingly. The food was excellent and the ambiance perfect! We would highly recommend this restaurant!!
The restaurant lived up to its sterling reputation. The Decour and atmosphere prepared you for excellence from the kitchen. The waiter was professional and informed his recommendations were outstanding. The kitchen delivered on everything that was promised. The fried chicken and chicken livers are a must for any fan of southern delicacies. You do you feel like you're living the Charlston experience by being in Magnolias.
Arrived a few minutes late to a reservation, which wasn't an issue at all.
Seated in rear which definitely has a different vibe than the front. Front seems trendier.
Service was attentive as a whole but kitchen did fall behind at one point.
The items we ordered ranged from average to very good, but certainly not the "to die for" reviews I've seen on here.
Worth a dinner but temper expectations a bit.
Best crab cakes I have ever had...this New England gal is a shrimp and grits convert thanks to Magnolia's...our waiter, Corey, was professional, attentive, knowledgeable, fun...can't say enough good things about the menu, and a terrific selection of cocktails, beer and wine...special atmosphere without being stuffy...sensational serenade by someone for a birthday, who was that?!
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