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Where do the locals go?

TwoLaughingLabs
8 posts
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Where do the locals go?

My husband and I are heading to Savannah next weekend. We're huge food fanatics and wondering where the locals go for great authentic food...don't want to be caught in the tourist traps.

Also, we're thinking of doing the Foody tour to experience supposedly some of Savannah's favorites and be able to try a variety of places. Has anyone done the tour? Wondering how it is.

Thanks in advance for your feedback!

route 66
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728 posts
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1. Re: Where do the locals go?

I can tell you where locals don't go:

Paula Deen's Lady and Sons.

Locals got Paula off the ground when it was in its original location on the southside and eventually downtown with freshly prepared food supervised by Paula herself.

Nowadays it's a noisy 1820's-era warehouse setting with buffet as the starring attraction plus the mandatory gift shop... a tourist trap extraordinaire. Paula no longer supervises it, as her celebrity status has taken aflight.

For authentic Southern cooking, locals still swear by (not at) Mrs. Wilkes, aka The Wilkes House, 107 West Jones St., in the historic district.

Lunch only, M-F, 11a.m.-2p.m. If you're here only for the weekend, you'll have to miss it.

Dinner is served in classic boardinghouse style...you will see tourists mixed in the locals, students, evryone goes to Mrs. Wilkes. Tip: eat very light for breakfast. Arrive at Mrs. Wilkes by 10:30-10:45a.m. for the first seating.

Walls BBQ ---open only Thursday-Saturday, on East York Lane, in historic district. You gotta look for it, behind a small house, on East York between Price and Houston (we say How-ston) Streets.

or, Angel's BBQ --Oglethorpe Lane, next to the huge Independent Presbyterian Church in downtown Savannah.

Pirates House ---yes, it IS touristy but it's part f old Savannah like no other restaurant. We still go there, mixed among the tourists. You will put away good Southern-style food. Lunch is better over supper.

These are just a few ideas. The Foody Tour is a hit. Keep in mind that you sample only small tidbits of food along the way, not meals. You get to see parts of Savannah that are off the beaten track, outside of the historic district. Hollywood Ron, the owner, "gives good tour",,,make sure HE will be presenting the tour, not a hired hand.

Clearwater
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51 reviews
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2. Re: Where do the locals go?

Most of the upper end local places like The pink house or Vic's, Garibaldi's or Bistro Savannah also put a Savannah spin on many of their dishes which can be very interesting to someone who pays attention to the details.

Savannah
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103 posts
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3. Re: Where do the locals go?

I have done the Foody Tour and I loved it (I also love to EAT!) There were several places that I had never tried (even being a local) and Ron is a great tour guide! I have family coming in November and I have already booked them (and me) on that tour! When I went on the tour we went to 7 different locations - yes, we did go to Lady and Sons, in my opinion it wasn't my favorite by any means (New South Cafe and those fried green tomates, had to be my favorite or the chocolate at Wright Square Cafe!)

One place my husband and I go is Alligator Soul, I love the atmosphere, the food and the service is always excellent, the menu is seasonal and is very good (we try to make it at least once a season)! One tip I always tell people is SAVE ROOM FOR DESSERT! It will be hard but it is always worth it!

TwoLaughingLabs
8 posts
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4. Re: Where do the locals go?

Thanks everybody. This is very helpful. I've heard that bad news about Paula's being a tourist trap, although we are huge fans of hers. And I wouldn't mind running into her sons...hahah don't tell my husband! I know it's a stop on the Foody tour so maybe we'll get our share and spend our real meals on some of the great places you guys suggested.

TwoLaughingLabs
8 posts
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5. Re: Where do the locals go?

For the Foody tour, how far in advance do you need to book?

I see the jazz festival will be going on next weekend. Are there stages set up all over town or how does that work? Do you pay a flat fee for the festival? I didn't see any pricing info on their website.

What about carriage rides/ghost tours, etc? Any ones better than others? Any other must do things for our trip?

Savannah
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103 posts
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6. Re: Where do the locals go?

If book the Foody Tour as soon as possible - it is a pretty popular tour, they do require a CCD and they have a 24 hour CXL policy.

The Jazz Fest. is in Forsyth Park and they have a huge stage set up and it is free. We go every year and it is always nice to sit in the grass and listen to the music (there is always a lot of people.)

Carriage ride I have never been on one (I'm allergic to horses) but there are 3 carriage companies: Historic Savannah Carriage Tours, Plantation, and Carriage Tours of Savannah. Ghost Tours it really depends on what you are looking for riding or walking?

Let us know...

TwoLaughingLabs
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7. Re: Where do the locals go?

Hey amarkshst,

Booked our foody tour this morning. So excited! And she's 90% sure Ron will be our guide. Yay!

As for the ghost tour-a walking tour would be nice-just heard the ghost tours are something fun to do. Any other suggestions of must do things while we're there?

Savannah
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8. Re: Where do the locals go?

The walking ghost tours are fun... I always recommend the pub tours (if you and everyone in the party is over 21 - there is no children – sometimes the drunks can be just as bad as the kids). There are 3 pub tours in the city: Cobblestone Tours, Creepy Crawl, and Tara Tours. I have been on the first 2 but have not been on Tara Tours, everyone has their own opinion on the Pub Tours, I enjoyed the Cobblestone Tours (in my opinion there was a little more history than the Creepy Crawl). Keep in mind I only go on the Pub Tours when I have family in the city, so it has been several months since I was on one last. I hope this helps!

Savannah, GA
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9. Re: Where do the locals go?

If you've transportation and are willing to take a pleasant drive, or two, find locals an Geneva's on Bee Road (at intersection of Victory Drive, which is also HWY 80), at Sweet Potatoes on Waters Avenue (Near intersection of Eisenhower) and at AJ's Dockside at "The Beach"...Tybee Island. I am also currently besotted by memeorable lunch at a tiny, lovely place called Cafe 37 that is located in a carriage house beside the "big" house in which Abercorn Antiques is located (Abercorn at 37th St.).

I also love lunch at Kao Thai Cuisine at 3017 Victory Drive...some local shrimp prepared extremely artistically. (Dinner there good, too, but considerably more expensive.) Enjoy.

10. Re: Where do the locals go?

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