We were going to have dinner at 82 Queen in the evening and we were walking around the downtown area. When we got to Queen Street it was cordoned off for a movie. They were filming a scene from the film Cold Mountain which starred Jude Law, Nicole Kidman, Renee Zellweger and Philip Seymour Hoffman. The street was covered with straw, but the buildings and street otherwise looked like the rest of Charleston. Since there was no filming at the moment, there were no celebrities or even crews to be seen.
We walked around some of the other areas, to soak up more of the ambience of Charleston, and as we were discovering little shops and that, we saw a large bus. This bus was the Declaration of Independence Road Trip, and there was an original copy of this great document inside the bus. This bus was on a three and half year road trip, to allow as many people as possible to see it. I hate to say it, but there was not a long line when we encountered the bus and we were able to see the Declaration of Independence quite quickly. What a wonderful item to see in this city of history.
We continued on our stroll down by the South Battery and admired the grand homes and beautiful architecture. Every where you looked there was a grandeur and a feeling of the Old South. You realized that a character like Rhett Butler would have certainly hailed from this fair city.
When we got back to Queen Street to eat at one of the famed restaurants in Charleston, 82 Queen, which is their address, all signs of filming was gone and the street was not cordoned off anymore. This restaurant was noted by the locals as the place where the theatrical and artistic crowd went, and they were also known for all of the culinary awards that they have received. When we arrived for our reservation we were asked if we wanted to sit in the walled garden area or in the restaurant proper. We chose the restaurant, just to escape the humidity.
82 Queen prides itself on serving cuisine of the “Lowcountry” and the cuisine reminded us of the French Quarter in New Orleans. Queen Street is part of the French Quarter of Charleston, so it was a good mix. We were finally able to partake of the signature dish of Charleston, we both enjoyed bowls of She Crab Soup, and it was well worth the wait. My Bride enjoyed an entrée of Jambalaya and I opted for a duck dinner. I cannot remember what we ordered for dessert, but I am sure that it was as excellent as the dinner was.
The wine list was extensive as I knew it would be, as they had been listed by The Wine Spectator in their Restaurant Guide for the year. That is always a good sign for choosing a restaurant when you are away, and it allows you to find establishments that are independent and give you the taste of the city where you are going, instead of a cookie cutter chain. Out of all the wines that were available for our dinner, I chose a wine for the memory and the label. It was an 82 Queen California Chardonnay and it went well with our dinner and a change of pace from the previous two evenings of enjoying bottles of Sauvignon Blanc.