Last week, I had the pleasure of attending the annual luncheon for the Charleston Convention and Visitors Bureau’s Travel Council. Besides the fact that it was in an absolutely gorgeous setting at The Sanctuary, Kiawah’s renowned resort and spa, that the dinner was delicious and company spectacular, we were treated to an interesting presentation on “The Rise of Culinary Tourism.”
Christina Grdovic, Senior Vice President and Publisher of Food & Wine magazine described the culinary experience in Charleston as one that was “always in season.” We have so many restaurants here—the tried and true, the eclectic, the trendy, the "meat and threes," the white table cloth fancy—its often hard to choose where to go. Charleston's own BB&T Wine + Food Festival has become a "must attend" destination for culinary travels all around the world.
Grdovic had an interesting observation: food “fuels the desire to go to destinations.” The need to make decisions about “where to eat before where to stay” is for the “passion-based traveler” and happens more and more often. We rely heavily on the opinions of others when choosing and making travel plans. We discover blogs and uncover the local flavors and hang outs at our destination and have an uncanny knack of documenting through social media what we eat, drink and love.
Have you ever heard of a “Food Pilgrim?” I hadn’t heard of one either. But it made complete sense as I thought about the way that I had begun to travel, explore, discover over the past 20 years. A Food Pilgrim travels to a destination for a single meal. Whether it be for the combination of flavors, for the celebrity chef, for the atmosphere, the exclusivity; Food Pilgrims yearn for that singular, extraordinary memory.
I’ve eaten sucking pig in Madrid at Botin, a Philly Cheesesteak at Pat’s, had tea at The Goring in London, Fish Tacos overlooking the Pacific in San Diego, Lobster in Maine and the list goes on and on. I love food. I love that food brings family and friends together, that it showcases our backgrounds and makes us feel at home.
It’s no secret that here in Charleston, we too have a couple of meals that travelers should make a pilgrimage to taste. Want to find out what they are? We at Luxury Simplified Retreats would be delighted to share our favorite flavors and eateries of Charleston - just ask us!
What's the one dish you would travel here for?
INTERESTED IN LEARNING MORE?
Our expert teams - from development, investment, real estate, and property management - have experienced it all and have the insight to help you along the way.