Southerner's Guide to Grits

We visited six of Savannah's finest restaurants to see how they cook up their rendition of this Southern classic.


Published:

In the same family as shrimp but closer to a lobster, crawfish is a seafood that tends to scare outsiders away. Don't fear! These mudbugs are delicious additions to any shrimp and grits dish. (Above: Lowcountry Shrimp and Grits at a.Lure)

 

“What the heck are grits anyway?” a tourist in Savannah was recently overheard asking his waitress at a local breakfast joint. “They are manna from heaven, honey,” she replied. “Why don’t you have some with butter?” “OK, I’ll try a bowl,” he said, rubbing his hands in anticipation of a new culinary adventure. “Lord, child, we can’t serve you grits in a bowl! It is not cream of wheat! I’ll take care of you honey,” she said walking away, shaking her head and likely wondering if he would ask for a spoon to boot. Grits are always eaten with a fork in the South.

Shrimp, Grits and Greens at Belford's

Belford’s

This downtown spot offers some of the greatest Southern cuisine and some of the liveliest people-watching. One of Belford’s most innovative specialties is their Shrimp, Greens and Grits. This dish is grounded in a grit cake with smoked Gouda cheese and Parmesan topped with collared greens and Georgia shrimp. The best thing about these grits—other than the taste—is that they are available any time from brunch to dinner.

Lowcountry Shrimp and Grits at a.Lure

a.Lure

One of the most unique grits dishes can be found at Savannah’s a.Lure, located on Congress Street. Settling on top of a grits base, these Lowcountry Shrimp and Grits combine creamy mascarpone with savory Georgia shrimp sautéed with bacon fat with a medley of other divine flavors. To complete this dishes flavor profile, they serve it with a sweet treat of biscuits and pineapple cardamom jam.

Shrimp and Grits at J. Christopher's

J. Christopher’s

This iconic breakfast, lunch and dinner joint is always welcoming crowds of people to experience their Southern comfort food. J. Christopher’s serves a hearty Shrimp and Grits  topped with cheddar cheese , bacon, jalapeños, Georgia shrimp and Andouille sausage. This hotspot has hosted the likes of visiting movie stars, resident musicians and notable politicians.

Shrimp Cheddar Grits and Gravy at The Olde Pink House

The Olde Pink House

At Savannah’s most famous historic restaurant, they take the classic shrimp and grits to another level by adding a third component: Gravy. Shrimp and Cheddar Grits and Gravy is a staple at The Olde Pink House. Executive chef Vincent Burns explains that the key to the dish is the country ham gravy poured atop the stone-ground grits and freshest Georgia shrimp.

Shrimp and Grits at b.Matthew's

b. Matthew’s

This tavern-like spot is headed up by Savannah native chef Will Oglesby. He melds fresh herbs, garlic and ham with a rich moray sauce to enhance the depth of flavors in b.Matthew’s Shrimp and Grits. To create the perfect texture of grits, Chef Will takes pride in his slow-cook method.

Bourbon Brisket and Blue-Corn Grits at Hotel Indigo
Photograph by Michael Schalk

Hotel Indigo

Even a grits traditionalist cannot resist Hotel Indigo’s Bourbon Brisket and Blue Corn grits. This twist on a classic Southern dish features a bourbon and brown sugar marinated brisket sitting on top of blue-corn grits. Its lavender color offers an aesthetically pleasing eating experience without having to sacrifice any of the taste.

 

For more culinary hotspots, check out South Magazine's dining guide.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

South's Greatest Moms Contest 2018

We're looking for the greatest, most authentic and sincere, southern moms. Taking nominations November 1st!

South's Greatest Photographers 2018

We're looking for the greatest, most creative photographers. If that is you, or you know of any, don't hesitate to nominate!
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Events Calendar

  • Reindeer Run 8k

    Dec 15, 2018
    8:00 AM - 12:00 PM @  Savannah International Trade and Convention Center

    On Saturday, December 15th, we will STEP-UP & STEP-IN© for youth, run against bullies and make sure everyone joins in the “Reindeer...

  • Colonial Christmas at Wormsloe

    Dec 15, 2018
    10:00 AM - 4:00 PM @ Wormsloe State Historic Site

    Join us at Wormsloe to spread some holiday cheer. Holiday crafts will be at the museum all day. At 1 PM join in the festivities such as caroling,...

  • Enchanted Princess Winter Wonderland Ball

    Dec 15, 2018
    10:00 AM @ The Westin

    Have you ever imagined bringing your little ones to a world of imagination just across the Savannah River? If so, come one, come all and step...

  • "Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas" Play

    Dec 15, 2018
    11:00 AM @ Trustees Theater

    Bring the whole family for this special movie from Walt Disney's Gold Collection, "Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas." The...

  • Savannah Santacon 2018

    Dec 15, 2018
    12:00 PM - 10:00 PM @ Historic Savannah

    Meet at 12 noon in Historic Savannah. Savannah’s original holiday Pub crawl is back. This is our ninth year of 100-300 Santas strong!...

  • Restore and Renew with Sue Finkle

    Dec 15, 2018
    4:00 PM - 6:00 PM @ Savannah Power Yoga

    Restorative yoga relaxes and heals the body and mind. Sue will lead you through a series of poses that allow you to surrender your body onto...

  • Here We Come A Caroling

    Dec 15, 2018
    5:00 PM - 7:00 PM @ Savannah Holly Days Stage

    Come out and enjoy listening to the sound of holiday cheer from varies choirs as you shop for gifts in Savannah’s Historic District diverse stores.

  • Bonaventure Cemetery: After Hours Stories Eternal

    Nov 17, 2018
    5:00 PM - 8:00 PM @ Bonaventure Cemetery

    Savannah's only after hours cemetery tour awaits! Few places are more invoking of Easter and life's great questions and mysteries than that...

  • Capture a ‘paw‑fect’ pic

    Nov 19, 2018
    5:00 PM - 8:00 PM @ Oglethorpe Mall

    Bring your furry friends in for a pic with Santa, because pets are family too! Capture a special moment with your dog or cat to cherish for years...

  • Lights of the South

    Nov 16, 2018
    5:30 PM - 10:00 PM

  • The 8th Annual Homegrown Holiday Hoedown!

    Dec 15, 2018
    6:30 PM - 10:00 PM @ Ballroom at the American Legion

    A favorite Savannah holiday tradition returns for its 8th year! Get in the holiday spirit with local music by: The Train Wrecks The Hypnotics...

  • A Christmas Story

    Dec 15, 2018
    7:00 PM - 10:00 PM @ Harbour Town

    Get into the holiday spirit by watching this classic movie under the Liberty Oak. Benches and a fire pit for roasting marshmallows will be...

  • Lean Ensemble Theater presents Bad Dates by Theresa Rebeck

    Dec 12, 2018
    7:30 PM - 9:30 PM @ HHPS Main Street Theatre

    Confessions of a single mother and self-described restaurant idiot-savant abound in this thoroughly charming, intoxicating and slyly sweet...

  • 2nd Annual Tybee Christmas Cabaret

    Dec 15, 2018
    7:30 PM @ Tybee Post Theatre

    Do You Hear What I Hear? It’s time for the 2nd Annual Tybee Christmas Cabaret!  This year our lineup features Broadway writer,...

  • Santa's Wonderland

    Nov 14, 2018
    All Day @ Bass Pro Shops

    The magic returns to Bass Pro Shops and Savannah-area families are invited to enjoy this enchanting Christmas village offering FREE 4x6...

  • Skatefest

    Dec 07, 2018
    All Day @ Savannah Civic Center

  • Greenbriar Children's Center Toy Drive with the SMC Partners

    Dec 04, 2018
    All Day

    Savannah businesses are uniting to assist a local nonprofit for the holidays! From December 4–17, the Savannah Master Calendar Partners...

  • License to Chill Snow Island

    Nov 16, 2018
    All Day @ Margaritaville at Lanier Islands

    Margaritaville at Lanier Islands is preparing for a winter wonderland makeover that will surprise and delight local residents and travelers...

  • FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS AND WINDOW WONDERLAND

    Dec 01, 2018
    All Day @ Historic Downtown Brunswick

    Celebrate the holidays with festive lights and decorations, including creative displays in downtown windows and storefronts! Decorations will be up...

  • 2018 National Gingerbread House Competition™ Display

    Nov 25, 2018
    All Day

    What started as a small group of gingerbread houses built by community members in 1992 has evolved into one of our most treasured traditions at The...


Show More...

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Scenes of the South

Beaujolais Nouveau Day 2018

Savannah's 39 Rue De Jean celebrated Beaujolais Nouveau Day, the official end of this year’s growing season. Harvest is complete and vintners—especially in France—are ready to celebrate the completion of the harvest. Beaujolais Nouveau is a red wine that is annually released on the third Thursday in November. Nouveau wine undergoes a very short fermentation process, and yields an extremely fresh and fruity wine.

A Chefs Collaborative

This five course dinner held at Pacci Italian Kitchen and Bar allowed guests to taste exceptional flavors steeped in tradition. Included were the culinary skills of Chef Adam Barnett of The Katharine Brasserie & Bar, Winston-Salem, NC, Chef Robert Hoffman of Angeline’s Charlotte, NC, Chef Daniel Gorman of The Henley Nashville, TN, Chef Sebastien Rondier of Brabo, Alexandria, VA, and Chef Lauren Teague of PACCI Italian Kitchen + Bar.

East and West BBQ

A whole hog BBQ showcase, from two of the south’s most legendary Pitmasters, Pat Martin and Sam Jones. Hosted by Alida Hotel this event was a fabulous juxtaposition between Eastern North Carolina style BBQ and Western Tennessee style. Made possible by the Savannah Food and Wine Festival.

Savannah Food & Wine Fest

Hundreds came to experience Southern charm and hospitality, Savannah Style. The South's best culinary happenings - one exceptional week in Savannah. Iconic and historic coastal venues provided the perfect backdrop for gourmet and fun. South magazine captured the experience at the VIP tent.

Big Wig Boat Bash

Savannah's Riverboat, The Georgia Queen set sail to host the final fundraiser for the 2018 class of Big Wigs, together raising over $100,000 for the Susan G. Komen Coastal Georgia Foundation. This evening included heavy hors d’oeuvres, beverages, a silent auction, music and dancing and a contest to crown the Biggest BigWig! Contest categories included: The Biggest Wig, The Pink Ribbon Award and Best Pink Personality.

Boo Bash

This spooktacular evening included hors d’oeuvres, “spirits,” music and dancing, a Halloween costume contest with cash prizes, Halloween-themed entertainment, a 50/50 raffle, live auction and talent contest. Contest categories included: Dancing, Singing, Rapping, Stand-up Comedy and Lip Syncing.

Masquerade at the Mansion

Plenty of patrons donned masks and beads for an unforgettable Mardi Gras at the Mansion. There unique entertainment, food, and decor including magic fire, beignets, king cake and a photo booth, plus music and dancing, libations, late-night treats, and lots of surprises.

DineSouth After Party

This year's DineSouth ended in a blast. Dozens headed over to Barrellhouse, who hosted the after party. They enjoyed great drinks and live music by Individually Twisted.

DineSouth 2018

This year's DineSouth sponsored by Fulfillment.com was the greatest yet! South magazine has once again put on a night filled with fantastic food and entertainment. Guests enjoyed delicious food & drinks in the city while getting the opportunity to meet and mingle with the best chefs in the South. The entertainment was amazing with American Idol winner Candice Glover, unique band Velvet Caravan and the acoustic sounds of Annie Allman. The event supported the local Salvation Army.

Grand Opening of 201 Seafood

Mixing the traditional tastes of the south with the local flair of the city, 201 Seafood and Tapas Lounge showcases Savannah's culinary community and their grand opening now gives us full access to some of the best seafood in the Coastal Empire.