Food & Wine // 7 min Read

Ask the Locals: Our Favorite Restaurants Near Hilton Head

Written by Palmetto Bluff

Dec 27, 2023

places to eat near hilton head

The 10 Best Places to Eat Near Hilton Head Island

Nestled on the southernmost tip of South Carolina, Hilton Head Island beckons not only with its pristine beaches but also with a culinary scene that rivals its natural beauty. The Lowcountry, known for breathtaking landscapes and rich history, extends its charm to the dining experiences in the heart of South Carolina, particularly in Bluffton, just 10 minutes away from the Atlantic Ocean. With an abundance of locally sourced fish, oysters, blue crabs, and shrimp, the chefs in this region craft exquisite dishes that capture the essence of the Lowcountry. Together, let’s explore some of the best places to eat near Hilton Head Island. 

1. Old Oyster Factory

Overlooking the serene waters of Broad Creek, the Old Oyster Factory stands as a testament to Hilton Head’s timeless charm. For over three decades, it has been a culinary haven, offering fresh-caught seafood, raw oysters, and a variety of succulent steaks. The panoramic views of golden marshlands create an idyllic backdrop for an unforgettable dining experience. Cap off your meal with the Mascarpone Souffle or the decadent Creme Brulee, leaving your taste buds dancing with delight.

2. Salty Dog Cafe

A quintessential Hilton Head dining destination, The Salty Dog Cafe exudes seaside elegance. Set against a picturesque waterfront, this renowned establishment invites patrons to savor locally-sourced seafood, mouth-watering sandwiches, pasta dishes, burgers, and award-winning crab legs. Indulge in the legendary hushpuppies adorned with homemade honey butter as you sip on tropical cocktails and witness the mesmerizing sunset over the water.

3. Nunzio Restaurant + Bar

The cuisine at Nunzio Restaurant + Bar transports you to the shores of Southern Italy. Founded by the Patruno family from the Puglia region, this authentic Italian eatery is a celebration of generations-old recipes and culinary traditions. From pasta dishes to local fish, veal, chicken, and Italian sausage, every bite tells a story of the flavors of Southern Italy. Pair your meal with a selection from their extensive wine list and round off the experience with a delightful dessert that echoes the sweet notes of the Southern coast.

4. The Pearl Kitchen & Bar

In the heart of Old Town Bluffton, The Pearl Kitchen + Bar is a haven for those seeking health-conscious fare without compromising on flavor. Offering some of the best seafood, steaks, and local produce available, the restaurant presents a fresh and contemporary approach to Lowcountry dining. Explore their fine wine selection, including pinot noir, chardonnay, cabernet sauvignon, and a variety of reds and whites from around the world. Alternatively, treat yourself to an original-mixed cocktail, such as the Lemongrass Martini or the Lowcountry Sour, for a delightful twist on traditional favorites.

5. Hudson’s Seafood House on the Docks

For over five decades, Hudson’s Seafood House on the Docks has stood as a testament to the rich seafood traditions of Hilton Head Island. Situated at the edge of the Port Royal Sound, the restaurant utilizes one of the island’s last local fishing fleets to bring in fresh-caught seafood. As you dine, take in the extraordinary views, and immerse yourself in a truly special Lowcountry dining experience.

Suggested: A Culinary Adventure Through the South’s Best Seafood Spots

6. Buffalos

Buffalos, the newest addition nestled within Palmetto Bluff, offers a distinct Lowcountry coastal dining experience. Indulge in a culinary journey featuring a new oyster bar, local seafood, and fresh produce straight from the farm. With a full bar boasting an extensive wine list and captivating cocktails, Buffalos invites you to enjoy a relaxing ambiance while savoring breakfast, lunch, or dinner, along with a dedicated children’s menu.

7. Canoe Club

Exclusive to Palmetto Bluff Club members, The Canoe Club fully encompasses Southern comfort. Here, members can relish world-class dining with sweeping views of the shimmering May River on one side and the inland waterway on the other. The coastal menu celebrates local seafood, with staples including fresh shrimp and oysters. Partnering with local farms, The Canoe Club ensures that fresh vegetables, beef, and poultry honor the abundant bounty of the Palmetto State.

Learn More: The Best Restaurants Near and Within Palmetto Bluff

8. The Bluffton Room

Situated in the heart of Old Town Bluffton, The Bluffton Room was founded with the goal of reviving the lost art of dining. Classic American cuisine prepared with the finest ingredients is served in an intimate and vibrant atmosphere, capturing the essence of the Lowcountry. The well-crafted cocktails and table-side preparations evoke the feeling of a lively dinner party, making each visit a memorable evening with friends and family.

9. Cole’s

Another Palmetto Bluff Club exclusive, Cole’s, is dedicated to serving regional cuisine paired with inventive drinks, regional breweries, and a carefully selected wine list. Culinary experts at Cole’s use only the freshest ingredients from nearby farmers, fishermen, and other vendors, ensuring that each dish bursts with fresh flavors. Enjoy a draft beer or a signature Cole’s cocktail while taking in the scenic views of the marshlands, making it a dining experience unique to Palmetto Bluff.

10. The Cottage

A charming restaurant located in a renovated 1868 home in the historic district of Bluffton, The Cottage offers delectable cuisine, afternoon tea, and an abundance of baked pastries. Unlike any other eatery in the Lowcountry, The Cottage excels in preparing traditional favorites with unique twists on Southern fare. From a variety of menus for all occasions to a menu tailored for furry friends, The Cottage ensures an unremarkable culinary experience for all.

Indulge in Luxurious Lowcountry Living at Palmetto Bluff

If the culinary scene of the Lowcountry entices you to visit more or stay all year-round, consider Palmetto Bluff as you future home! Palmetto Bluff stands as a testament to luxurious Lowcountry living where everyday is an adventure. Immerse yourself in upscale amenities and breathtaking natural scenery, where every meal is a celebration of fresh, farm-to-table ingredients sourced from the Palmetto Bluff Farm and other local producers.

To experience the richness of the Lowcountry at Palmetto Bluff, click the button below to view our selection of homes. Your luxury lifestyle awaits.

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