Whether you’re visiting Savannah, Georgia, for the Food & Wine Festival November 10-16, or you’re planning a trip later on, here are a few of our favorite places to dine, shop, and stay in The Hostess City.
Huey’s on the River
The only thing I love more than their homemade beignets smothered in praline sauce is the fact that this café serves them and the rest of their breakfast and brunch menu until 3 p.m. every single day. Finally, a brunch for the late-risers!
Find it: 115 E. River St. hueysontheriver.net
When I’m in the mood for a truly unique meal, I head over to this gorgeous Southern Gothic gem. Chef Patrick McNamara’s playful menu is an ever-evolving work of culinary art inspired by the bounty of Georgia seafood and produce. This is one of those rare restaurants that takes its food very seriously while remaining blessedly unpretentious. With its red velvet drapes, dark damask walls, and glittering chandeliers, Noble Fare has a mesmerizing ambiance, making it the perfect place to spend an intimate evening with a handful of your best friends.
Find it: 321 Jefferson St. noblefare.com
The Olde Pink House
Housed in an 18th century mansion, this restaurant is a Savannah icon. Depending on your mood, you can enjoy white-tablecloth service in their formal upstairs dining room, or you can head downstairs to my favorite spot, The Planter’s Tavern. With its rustic exposed beams and crackling fireplace, there’s no cozier bar in Savannah. Be sure to try the Crispy Scored Flounder with Apricot-Shallot Sauce—it’s my must-order dish when I visit.
Find it: 23 Abercorn St. plantersinnsavannah.com/ the-olde-pink-house
Kitchens on the Square
With a tagline like “Make your kitchen smile,” you can imagine this is no ordinary pots-and-pans place. A riot of kitsch and color, it’s jam-packed with must-have gadgets, vintage kitchenware, and colorful linens flapping overhead.
Find it: 38 Barnard St. makeyourkitchensmile.com
The Paris Market
This impeccable collection of curiosities from around the globe wows me every time I visit, because it’s never the same shop twice. From trinkets like paperweights and drawer pulls to treasures like 18th century French chandeliers and furniture, it’s a wonderland of beautiful things. I always say I’m just going to look, but I never really mean it! They also have an adorable sun-drenched coffee shop, perfect for people watching.
Find it: 36 W. Broughton St. theparismarket.com
The Lady & Sons
Although Savannah’s cuisine has always been admired by visitors, Paula Deen and her restaurant, The Lady & Sons, put the city on the culinary map. Lines can stretch around the block, but it’s all worth it after one bite of her legendary chicken pot pie. Don’t miss it!
Find it: 102 W. Congress St. theladyandsons.com
The Public Kitchen & Bar
There’s something about dining on a rooftop that really does it for me, so that’s why I always try to sneak over to this bustling bistro at lunch. Featuring casual yet elevated pub fare, The Public Kitchen & Bar has a fun, energetic vibe that makes you feel like you’re part of the Savannah scene. Their dinner menu is equally superb, just be aware the rooftop patio is open only at lunch.
Find it: 1110 Bull St. thepublickitchen.com
Back in the Day Bakery
Although I’m always tempted by the baked-from-scratch cupcakes, cookies, and pies, it’s their classic banana pudding that woos me almost every single time. No lie, I dream about it sometimes. Be sure to meet owners Cheryl and Griff—they’re just as sweet as the treats they lovingly bake.
Find it: 2403 Bull St. backinthedaybakery.com
Leopold’s Ice Cream
Stop by for a scoop, sundae, or float at this Savannah staple. Originally opened in 1930, this ice cream parlor and soda fountain got a new lease on life when its third-generation owner returned from a hiatus in Hollywood to re-open the family business. Choose from dozens of “regular” house-made flavors and seasonal favorites, like Pumpkin Spice and Eggnog.
Find it: 212 E. Broughton St. leopoldsicecream.com
Where to Stay
Savannah is filled with quaint bed and breakfasts, hotels, and other lodging options, but here are a few of my favorite places to call home base.
A new boutique hotel, this property has a modern, edgy elegance and many fun amenities, like complimentary bicycles.
Find it: 601 E. Bay St. bricehotel.com
This is one of my longtime favorites—I love to sit on the terrace with a glass of wine after a long day and admire the Savannah skyline.
Find it: 1 Resort Dr. westinsavannah.com
This spectacular riverfront hotel is full of vintage-revival charm. The lavish accommodations are second only to their rooftop bar facing the river.
Find it: 102 W. Bay St. bohemianhotelsavannah.com
By Brian Hart Hoffman