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Charleston Living Best of the Best Reader's Choice 2017

By TERI ERRICO GRIFFIS and JENNA-LEY JAMISON

NIGHTLIFE

Appetizers

Tavern and Table

 If you’re not in the mood for a large meal or simply crave a quick snack before filling up on your main meal, this Mt. Pleasant hotspot has an array of cheese and meat plates, “snacks” and smaller dishes to hit the spot. Try a deep-fried deviled egg, pull-apart pretzels—with mustard or fondue—or sink your teeth into a slice of fluffy cornbread, baked fresh in a skillet and served with honey and whipped butter.  843-352-9510, tavernandtable.com

Bar

The Rooftop Bar at Vendue

Be transfixed by satisfying drinks and a swanky city view, both of which will refine your concept of bar life. Sit among the clouds and sip everything from red and white wine and crafted cocktails to imported and domestic beers and a number of liquors: American whiskey, rum, vodka, scotch and tequila. So whether you’re day drinking or toasting to a romantic evening, come on down—or rather, up—to one of the best destinations for alcohol in the Lowcountry. 843-577-7970, thevendue.com

Club/Nightspot

Trio Club

Hailed as Charleston’s premier nightclub and dance club, this upscale hangout in historic downtown is perfect for letting loose with friends or a celebratory occasion—think birthday, bachelor or bachelorette party. Move your body to songs from hip bands or DJ’s mixed beats. Or order a round of drinks at a private VIP table. Become a Key Club member and receive access to exclusive events and discounted prices each night from 8-10 p.m. triocharleston.com

Cocktail Selection

The Macintosh

For a price tag of $10 to $12 per pop, whether it’s a seasonal blend—including a menu list honoring the 2017 Spoleto Festival—or a classic favorite, you can’t go wrong with your drink order here. To name a few try a mint and lemon “bourbon smash”; a lemon and cava “French,” mixed with London Dry gin; or a “Pisco Sour,” a blend of Barsol Pisco, lemon, lime, egg white and Angosturra bitters. 843-789-4299, themacintoshcharleston.com

Craft Brewer

Palmetto Brewery

It’s all about what’s on tap at South Carolina’s oldest brewery “by the people, for the people.” From Wednesday to Saturday craft beer connoisseurs, or amateurs looking to start a new tasting hobby, are invited to checkout a favorite Charleston hangout on Huger Street. Some brews are seasonal, but year-round products include the Lowcountry Pilsner, Huger Street IPA, Amber and Pale ales and Espresso Porter. So come tour the facility—and new tasting room—or sit and sip at an outdoor table. 843-937-0903, palmettobrewery.com

Happy Hour

Pearlz Oyster Bar

From 4-7 p.m. Monday through Friday stop by Pearlz for a happy hour hangout. In addition to drinks, you’ll find discounts on food items, including appetizers and raw bar favorites. Snack on a $4 plate of corn fritters or a grilled Mahi taco for just $5. If you’re looking for a tangy kick to the evening, order a round of oyster shooters—just $4 apiece—mixed with pepper vodka and a spicy cocktail sauce. 843-577-5755, pearlzoysterbar.com

Late-night Menu

The Rarebit

There’s no need to rush through the doors of this ‘60s-inspired restaurant—or menu—if you’re running late on dinner; this King Street kitchen is open until 1 a.m., happy to serve customers who want something as simple as a grilled cheese or as Lowcountry authentic as gourmet chicken and waffles. Or maybe you crave an early breakfast—served all day—on your bar hopping adventure across downtown. 843-974-5483, therarebit.com

Pub/Tavern

My Father’s Mustache Eatery & Pub

Named after the infamous facial hair of the owner’s great-grandfather, this fifth-generation family business reflects the members’ English and Scottish roots—order fish and chips or bangers and mash anytime, and get discounted apps and drinks during happy hour. International flags are strung across the ceiling and walls, and TVs show European soccer matches. The Mt. Pleasant pub is also a destination for friendly competition; play pool, shuffleboard, darts, bocce ball and more. 843-884-2425, myfathersmustache.com

Specialty Drink

The Gin Joint

Spice up your drink life and take a seat inside this 1920s-inspired joint, where cocktails are crafted to your liking and ever-changing on the menu. Raise a butterscotch-infused Scotch drink, the “Dick and Jane,” to toast to friendship, or wink at your crush across the bar over a rose petal-infused “Must Hive.” But for $11, let the bartender mix up a drink based on a list of menu adjectives: tart, savory, fruit, spicy... and the list goes on. 843-577-6111, theginjoint.com

Wine List

Grill 225

Part of Charleston’s Market Pavilion Hotel, Grill 225 is a luxurious experience established largely by the 350-plus wine bottles available. Choose from a variety of pours—perhaps one kind for dinner and another for dessert. Try a merlot, chardonnay, pinot noir, or zinfandel. Labels range from sweet and light to bold and dry and stem from around the world. Under soft light, one thing’s for certain: you and your guest will sip and de-stress. 843-723-0500, marketpavillion.com/grill225

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