Area Guide | Food

About Town: A Foodie’s Guide to Restaurants Near Kiawah River

When it comes to dining near Kiawah River, the culinary scene offers a mouthwatering array of institutions that rival downtown Charleston and are sure to satisfy every craving. From casual waterfront eateries to upscale restaurants, this vibrant region is full of the freshest local ingredients, many of which are grown right here on Johns Island.

Two of Charleston’s sea islands, Johns Island and James Island, are home to popular spots and hidden gems that deserve a place on every foodie’s bucket list. While nearby Freshfields Village offers an array of casual eateries and restaurants, we have some suggestions should you want to travel a bit farther afield. Join us on a delectable journey, exploring some of our favorite restaurants that showcase the diverse flavors awaiting you in the Lowcountry.

Johns Island:

The Royal Tern: Nestled in the heart of Johns Island, and just a short drive from Kiawah River, The Royal Tern is a neighborhood eatery offering a delightful coastal dining experience – including fresh oysters, scallops, shrimp, and an impressive dessert menu. The Royal Tern is a must-visit destination for Kiawah River foodies seeking a taste of the coast.

Wild Olive: Open for more than a decade, Wild Olive attracts diners from across the Lowcountry with its locally sourced ingredients that are expertly combined to create seasonal variations of classic Italian dishes. Our favorites include their goat cheese and ricotta gnocchi, chicken parmesan and veal scallopine.

Angel Oak: Paying homage to the majestic Angel Oak Tree on Johns Island, this family operated restaurant captures the essence of Southern comfort cuisine, with ever-changing seasonal offerings including chicken and dumplings, shrimp and grits and fried green tomatoes. While technically on mainland Charleston, this restaurant’s zip code lands it right on Johns Island.

James Island:

Bowen’s Island: Looking to enjoy a breathtaking South Carolina sunset while shucking fresh oysters overlooking the water? With award-winning Southern comfort food and a laid-back atmosphere, Bowen’s Island is a local-favorite, offering fresh oysters, shrimp and grits and Lowcountry boil.

Edison James Island: Featuring a seasonal menu packed with local ingredients, produce and seafood, Edison James Island is the ideal spot to enjoy a unique, carefully curated meal paired with a local craft beer. Offering a unique variety of soups, salads, sandwiches and entrées, Edison has something for everyone at the table.

The James: New on the local culinary scene is The James, which offers an inviting atmosphere paired with a contemporary twist on traditional American fare. Indulge in signature dishes such as pecan-crusted chicken, prime rib melt and savory Scottish salmon, paired with a creative cocktail or choose from a wide selection of wines and spirits.

A food-lover’s paradise is waiting for you on the sea islands near Kiawah River, so book your reservations now!