Last Wednesday, after a hilarious night of improv at Theater 99, we were struck by hunger pangs and looking for somewhere to eat. I consulted my handy dandy Yelp app to find a restaurant in Charleston that was still serving food at 10:30, and we were lucky enough to stumble upon Craftsmen Kitchen & Tap House. Located on Cumberland Street in the old Johnson’s Bar spot, Craftsmen is a cool space featuring 2 bars and an outdoor beer garden area.I started off with a beer from Frothy Beard, one of Charleston’s newest breweries. The Photuris Pale Ale (apparently a photuris is a lightning bug. Who knew?) was good, but I think they still have some work to go on getting their technique right. Or maybe I just don’t like pale ales. I would like to try their Peppermint Porter (which hopefully I will be able to do this weekend at the brewery!) But, I digress. The beer menu is pretty cool, featuring 48 drafts on tap, which they rotate out regularly. I’d like to stop by during the day to take advantage of the outdoor space. The interior bars are also really well designed and have a very comfortable feel to them. Here are a couple of pictures of the two bar areas: The menu is divided into 2 parts. One one side, you have their “Bar Classics” which are available daily. On the other side, you have their “Daily Features,” which change out daily depending what they have in the kitchen. Laura and I both ordered the BBQ Pork sandwich (pulled pork, cole slaw, fried pickles on a sesame seed bun) from their daily features menu. It was delish. The bun was toasted ever so slightly and the fried pickles had just the lightest coating of batter and were delicious with the coleslaw. The sandwich was served with their “fries” which were more like fat potato chips.
John ordered the Delta Catfish and Chips with Comeback sauce ($10) from the Bar Classics menu. He said it was delicious with a “good fry on it, nice sized chunk of fish, and good catfishy flavor.” I love catfish, and just looking at it from across the table, I could tell it was delicious.
Ben ordered the Farmhouse Burger (beef, pork, idazabal, beer pickles, and bibb lettuce) from the Bar Classics menu. I took a bite of it, and let me tell you, it was outstanding. Not as good as a Husk burger, but still pretty darn good. The combination of beef and pork was very interesting and gave it an extra layer of depth. The idazabal cheese was good too, and added an almost smokey flavor to it. Really, really good.
I’ve had like 4 people tell me that I should get the Crunchy Dame (BBQ Pork belly, butterkase, cherry jam, sunny egg, $9) from the Bar Classics menu. Apparently it’s “unreal” and it “may have brought tears to my eyes,” so when I go back I’ll have to give that a try. All in all, I was very impressed and definitely recommend you try this place out.
Craftsmen Kitchen & Tap House
12 Cumberland St
Charleston, SC 29401