Food & Wine // 5 min Read

The Art of Tailgating

Written by Palmetto Bluff

Oct 3, 2022

Photography by: Krisztian Lonyai

Fall in the South may not bring cooler weather (and we're okay with that), but what it does bring is football. Practically a religion, college football is king, and the SEC reigns supreme. And no one tailgates quite like the South. Maybe it's our love of football, our flair for Southern hospitality, or simply the opportunity to convive with friends, but these ingredients result in some of the best pre-parties that turn into all-day affairs. Practically an art form, we understand that tailgates are so much more than team jerseys, end zones, and beer.

And while we agree that most tailgates may not include such extensive décor as ours (although, as avid tailgaters, we have seen everything from red Solo cups to fine china), one thing remains: tailgates should be festive events focused on spirit, comfort, and style.

To celebrate fall and the start of tailgate season, we've taken a few pages out of our playbook to help you host the perfect Southern tailgate.

So, go ahead, find that perfect spot, break out the bar cart and your great Aunt Dorothy's silver, and upgrade your tailgate with some of our favorite essentials from local Lowcountry shops.

Fowl Play
A sure crowd-pleaser, kick off your tailgate party with a fuss-free menu of Southern fried chicken and corn muffins.

Fried Chicken and Corn Muffins, Cahill's Market, price varies

A Tisket, A Tasket
Elevate your tailgate with these classic wicker accessories from J. Banks.

Ralph Lauren Bailey Single Wine Tote, $495
Ralph Lauren Bailey Double Wine and Cheese Tote, $1,495
Ralph Lauren Wicker Tray, $395
Ralph Lauren Ice Bucket, $495
Ralph Lauren Silverware Caddy, $250
Ralph Lauren Silverware, $20

Chill Out
Keep your drinks ice-cold . . . and ready to roll.

YETI Tundra Haul Roller Cooler, Outside Hilton Head, $400

Throw Down
Cozy up with your favorite teammates under a classic herringbone blanket.

Herringbone Throw Blanket, Emily McCarthy, $128

Toss Like A Boss
The official game of tailgating: a bean bag in one hand and a drink in the other. Get your own luxury cornhole set crafted right here in the Lowcountry.

Signature Classic Cornhole, Matthias Kaupermann, $3,995

Pull Up A Chair
You prepped all day, now relax. We love this sophisticated take on folding chairs.

Sailor Chairs, Teak + Table, $329

Dress To Impress
When you can mix comfort and style, it's a win-win.

Bloom & Give Scarf, $119
Leather Backpack, Satchel in Savannah, $455

Dress Up Your Drink
Score points with these hand stitched needlepoint koozies.

Smathers & Branson Needlepoint Can Cooler, Outside Hilton Head, $30

Whiskey Business
What's a classy tailgate without a hot toddy?

Cathead Old Soul, Bourbon Whiskey, $43

Cheers, My Deer!
Toast to a winning game with these handsome pewter elk head glasses.

Stag Stirrup Cup, Vagabond House, $52