The Peninsula rounds out Charleston’s most exclusive dining establishments, a beautifully restored circa 1844 building converted into a chic, modern dining room adorned with oil paintings, velvet-lined walls, woven sea grass, and custom-made chandeliers commissioned by respected designer Amelia Handegan. The outdoor seating area in the lush courtyard is illuminated by real copper carriage lanterns. The main theme here is a sophisticated interpretation of Southern cuisine. Tantalizing offerings might include Lowcountry oyster stew with wild mushroom grits to start, followed by grilled bourbon-glazed jumbo shrimp, or local swordfish in red pepper Béarnaise sauce. The wine menu is also one of the city’s finest, with over 300 selections. Leave room for the signature “ultimate coconut cake,” with its 12 (yes, 12) layers of vanilla-and-coconut deliciousness (you can order a slice or the whole thing to go).