October 25, 2023

Poogan's Porch and Other Autumn Adventures in Charleston

A Taste of Old Charleston with every bite!

Ahh, autumn I wish you could be with us the year 'round. Once there' a crispness in the air and the leaves start to turn, it's time to unpack the sweaters and consume all things pumpkin. Get ready for the Fall Tours: Home, History and Architecture. Visit some of the most historic homes and gardens in America on these self-paced tours organized by the Preservation Society of Charleston, October 7 through Nov. 6.

Maybe you love tours! Well, you will find just what you are looking for in Charleston. You can choose from Bulldog Tours like Ghost and Graveyard Walking, USS Yorktown Ghost Tours and go aboard the famous "Fighting Lady." There's even the Sandlapper Tours where you hear the tales of lost fortunes, pirate shops and tragic death while riding Charleston's dark waves.

If great Southern food is high on your list of things to do on weekends, there's nothing better than starting your weekend at Poogan's Porch on Queen Street.

It's an exhilarating experience that will make you want to keep coming back. Poogan's has been delivering the finest unforgettable southern fare since 1976. That warm welcoming feeling as you step inside is true southern hospitality at its best.

Located in the heart of the city on 72 Queen Street, it is the city's oldest independent culinary establishment. It's name honors the adorable little dog who wandered Queen street and often took naps on the porch as tourists and neighbors walked by. While Poogan is gone now the famous southern hospitality lives one. Get there early and you can grab a seat on the porch.

It's a great time to visit restaurants all over Charleston and take in a show at the Gaillard Auditorium.

How about venturing up there now through September 17 for Restaurant Week? https://www.lowcountryhospitalityassociation.com/restaurant-week/

If you haven't been there lately, now is a great time to go as the temperatures start to dip.


Poogan's has even expanded to the Columbia area through a venture called Poogan's Southern kitchen. They serve up the finest from their time perfected recipes such as house made biscuits and gravy ; creamy pimento cheese, which I like to call the glue that holds the South together, and great seafood such as their famous blue crab dip. Their chicken and waffles are memorable as is their sweet tea glazed salmon.

Sweet Tea Glazed Salmon is a favorite of mine and they serve it over field peas and corn succotash.( See version of this secret recipe below.)

Dessert Anyone?

No story about Poogan's would be complete without mentioned their dessert menu. One of their bests sellers is their Banana Pudding but it ain't your grandma's recipes. This one is prepared with a bourbon vanilla pudding which is layered between fresh ripe bananas and vanilla wafers. And as if that is not enough, you will need to try their Hummingbird Pecan Pie and rejoice in the decadence of the Seven-layer chocolate cake.

The menu truly has something for everyone.

Sweet Tea Glazed Salmon

1 cup good dark tea

8 green cardamon pods

2 whole star anise

6 salmon fillets about 6 ounces each

1 cup sugar

Make an aromatic simple syrup by boiling the tea, spices and sugar together. Strain and cool down.

Brush the syrup over the salmon fillets about an hour ahead of cooking. Reserve some for serving.

These are delicious either grilled or baked. When grilling use medium heat until the flesh of the fish just begins to flake, about 7 minutes depending on the thickness. Flip over after you establish nice grill marks. Top with more syrup just before removing from the grill.

When baking, heat oven to 350 degrees and cook to an internal temperature of 145 degrees.