I’m sitting on my couch looking out onto a snowy Chicago skyline dreaming of sunnier, tastier and more social times. I’m yearning for breakfast loaded with cat head biscuits, red eye gravy, hoecakes and pepper jam and nights navigating through throngs of beautiful food and foodies.  I want to throw on a dress and walk through the palm tree lined city, stroll through the park with a big glass of wine in my hand, snacking on Thai shrimp ceviche over noodles while listening to a Dixie Chicks cover band. I want to go back to the Charleston Wine + Food Festival, a magical place where wine and cocktails are abundant and pimento cheese reigns supreme.

I traveled to Charleston with our Account Manager Patrick on a Flavor Foraging trip to discover all of the inspiration that this lovely Southern city has to offer.  Growing up in Northern Michigan,  I don’t have a ton of firsthand experience with southern cuisine, but after four days in South Carolina I’d had enough fried chicken, shrimp and grits, okra, greens, and biscuits to make me feel almost like an expert.  Patrick, a chef and lifetime resident of the South and expert on the cuisine was a most excellent guide. We visited 10 restaurants and attended two of the Wine + Food Festival events. Everything was delicious and decadent.

Here are just a few food highlights from our trip.