Quintessentially Southern, Savannah is all historic squares and parks, antebellum architecture and horse-drawn carriages. The locals are known for a smidge of eccentricity, which only adds to the charm – and to some degree – the flavors of the food you’ll find in the city. From down-home Southern favorites to international cuisine, the population here loves its dining scene. So with all of this in mind, we present five establishments where you can absolutely “Eat Like a Local” in Savannah, Georgia:
The Olde Pink House
One of Savannah’s top dining establishments for a variety of reasons, The Olde Pink House is the city’s only mansion that dates back to the 18th Century, and offers a terrific bar and unforgettable southern cuisine. The plates here run the gamut, from the very simple – like fried chicken served with mac and cheese – to the unique, like almond-encrusted Tilapia with shrimp herb butter, Anson Mills grits and mixed beans. Add some collard greens, soak in the antebellum vibe and you’ll understand why Thrillist referred to The Olde Pink House as “the most Savannah restaurant experience possible.” An absolute must!
Treylor Park is a wonderfully unique combination of vintage and chic set in the heart of the historic district in downtown Savannah. Inside, there’s restaurant-style seating and a cocktail bar, and out back is a cozy beer garden. As for the food, you’ll find everything from low country pizza (with shrimp, corn, potatoes, sausage, crab meat and onions), to Hawaiian chicken tacos, to Southern pot pie and sloppy joes. Order some panko-crusted avocado fries and a local Jeckyll American Amber Ale and you’ve just about found comfort food heaven! Treylor Park is far from fancy, but absolutely worth a visit.
Highly-rated on both Yelp and Google, Zunzi’s is a little hole-in-the-wall that’s also located in the historic district, where locals tend to line up for what has been accurately described as its “mind-blowing” sandwiches. Owners Johnny and Gabriella DeBeer boast a mix of South African, Dutch, Swiss and Italian heritage, all of which is reflected in the food. Try Zunzi’s claim to fame: the Conquistador, which consists of baked chicken breast served with lettuce, tomato, and special sauce on French bread and is so good that Adam Richman from The Travel Channel named it one of the top three sandwiches in America.
Yet another small, intimate establishment, Sweet Spice serves some of the best Jamaican food you’ll find, well, outside of Jamaica! Proprietor Donavon Smith was born on the island, and upon arriving in the U.S., believed Jamaican favorites could be found most anywhere. When he realized this wasn’t the case, he founded Sweet Spice, which offers staples he learned to prepare as a kid at his mother’s stove, like tender curried goat served with friend plantains and white rice, and jerk chicken seasoned with thyme, allspice and bonnet peppers. Diners here enjoy all this and much more, at very attractive prices.
Savannah’s Fresh Catch Seafood
Savannah's Fresh Catch Seafood’s motto is “local, fresh, affordable.” Our suggestion: make a visit at lunchtime on a nice Savannah afternoon, and order takeout that you can enjoy in nearby Forsyth Park. The portions are generous and the crew is great, so stop by or call ahead and dig into favorites like fried oysters, conch with garlic and butter and crab stew. Then there’s the low country boil – heaping helpings of shrimp, potatoes, corn, sausage and blue crab when it’s available. There are certainly a wide variety of more traditional seafood restaurants in the city, but few (if any) do it better than this place.
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