On a recent visit to Charleston, South Carolina, I didn't have much of an agenda aside from sun-basking in balmy temperatures and enjoying some good Low Country cuisine. One morning, I found myself in the cozy dining room of The Hominy Grill, perusing a drool-worthy brunch menu. While the savory items looked amazing, I settled in for a meal that would celebrate my two favorite vacation ingredients: butter and sugar.
The best way to measure a pancake's merit is to first try it plain—if the flapjack stands up on its own, you have yourself a winner, only then worthy of a schmear of whipped butter or a shake of maple syrup. I am happy to report that the buttermilk pancakes ($7.50) were supremely moist, exquisitely light, and every bit as fluffy as a proper pancake should be—no condiments needed.
A single order of the house-made banana bread ($3.95) consists of two thick slabs of lightly toasted and delicately buttered bread. It was moist, dense, and tasted of ripe banana.
The pièce de résistance of the meal was the slice of head chef Robert Stehling's ultra-revered buttermilk pie ($3.95). Sweet without being overly sugary, tart without being too lemony, and with a hint of spicy nutmeg to boot, this is the way a pie should taste. The golden brown cake gives way to a light custard layer, and all this sits atop a buttery, flaky handmade pie crust. Served at room temperature with a dollop of fresh whipped cream, this pie was good enough to prompt me to come back for lunch for the next two days.