50 Best Southern Restaurants in America for 2018

As Voted by OpenTable Diners

With only 50 lazy, hazy days left of summer, OpenTable's 2018 list of the 50 Best Southern Restaurants in America offers diners plenty of options to savor flavors that are strongly associated with warm summer days and balmy nights. However, the honorees serve standout Southern fare year-round. The list is based on an analysis of 12,000,000+ reviews of more than 27,000 restaurants across the country—all submitted by verified diners. Don't forget to #traveldeliciously this summer.

Restaurants:Abel Brown, Acadiana, Acre
Price Range:$$$ - $$$
Cuisines:Southern, Creole / Cajun / Southern
Neighborhoods:Augusta, Downtown, Auburn

Abel Brown

$$$$·Southern·
Augusta
1,308 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for Anniversaries
The food was superb and our waitress Jennifer was amazing. We definitely recommend this restaurant for a fine dining experience with great quality food.
97% recommended
Southern in Atlanta / Georgia
27 people mentioned the Shrimp Grits

Acadiana

$$$$·Creole / Cajun / Southern·
Downtown
5,927 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for Groups
It will be missed. We certainly hope it finds a new home downtown.
94% recommended
182 people mentioned the Shrimp Grits
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Acre

$$$$·Southern·
Auburn
2,013 reviews
  • Local Ingredients
  • Good for a Date
  • Good for Anniversaries
I had the ribeye which was very flavorful and cooked (rare) to perfection. Karen had the gulf shrimp and etouffe which was excellent. Our server, Walker, was outstanding.
97% recommended
39 people mentioned the Shrimp Grits
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Alligator Soul

$$$$·Creole / Cajun / Southern·
Savannah
4,049 reviews
  • Romantic
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for a Date
Amazing food and service.
95% recommended
Best Food in Savannah
785 people mentioned the Alligator

Anson

$$$$·Southern·
Downtown Charleston
2,367 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for Anniversaries
Nice restaurant, attentive staff, good service and delicious food. Would definetely recommend.
94% recommended
Southern in South Carolina
156 people mentioned the Flounder

Antebellum

$$$$·Southern·
Flowery Branch
1,621 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for Anniversaries
  • Good for a Date
Second time to the restaurant. It did not disappoint. Food was amazing and service was very good. We definitely will be back again
99% recommended
Best Overall in Atlanta / Georgia
51 people mentioned the Fried Green Tomato

Atchafalaya Restaurant

$$$$·Creole / Cajun / Southern·
Garden District
3,924 reviews
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Great for Brunch
  • Good for a Date
Lovely place for a birthday dinner!
95% recommended
Creole / Cajun / Southern in New Orleans / Louisiana
418 people mentioned the Bloody Mary

The Boil Waverly

$$$$·Creole / Cajun / Southern·
Greenwich Village
1,534 reviews
  • Good for Groups
  • Casual
  • Fun
Great vibe and food!! The service is also great can't wait to go back.
93% recommended
31 people mentioned the Crayfish

Boucherie

$$$$·Contemporary Southern·
Uptown
522 reviews
  • Creative Cuisine
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Good for a Date
Had a great time. Food was amazing.
92% recommended
36 people mentioned the Bread Pudding
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Brennan's of Houston

$$$$·Creole / Cajun / Southern·
Midtown / Montrose
3,174 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for Anniversaries
  • Good for a Date
Our favorite restaurant in Houston. Even with the Covid19 restrictions we had wonderful food and fabulous service.
94% recommended
205 people mentioned the Turtle Soup

Cafe Dupont

$$$$·Contemporary Southern·
Birmingham
782 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for Anniversaries
  • Romantic
New menu featuring all their classic dishes in a multiple course small plate format. Excellent cocktail and wine list as well. Everything was outstanding as always! We will be baRead more
96% recommended
Best Overall in Alabama
14 people mentioned the Fried Oyster

Carrollton Market

$$$$·Contemporary Southern·
Uptown
1,301 reviews
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Good for a Date
The four of us have dined many times at Carrollton Market and literally love it there. The entire experience is non pareil. Congrats to the the Chef and Cadre!
97% recommended
Best Overall in New Orleans / Louisiana
17 people mentioned the Oyster Appetizer

Circa 1886

$$$$·Southern·
South Carolina
3,620 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Romantic
  • Good for Anniversaries
Special meal in a special place. The food, service, and surroundings were wonderful. One of our favorite places in Charleston.
97% recommended
36 people mentioned the Flounder
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Cured

$$$$·Southern·
Downtown
1,477 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Special Occasion
  • Hot Spot
We loved the experience. Our server made great suggestions.
93% recommended
64 people mentioned the Cured Meats
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Cypress Restaurant

$$$$·Southern·
Tallahassee
629 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
  • Creative Cuisine
Kudos to the chef for such a sophisticated and fun take on local and seasonal ingredients. The rack of lamb was stellar, as were the seared scallops. We loved the imaginative saladRead more
99% recommended
Best Food in Northwest Florida
5 people mentioned the Shrimp Grits

Distilled at The Sire Hotel

$$$$·Southern·
Lexington
843 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for a Date
  • Romantic
We had an incredible dinner here. Service was the highlight, and that is saying something, as the food was on point.
95% recommended
Best Overall in Central Kentucky
13 people mentioned the Fried Chicken

Dogwood: A Southern Table

$$$$·Southern·
SouthPark
1,429 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
  • Fit for Foodies
Had a great meal here. Wonderful service couldn’t be any more impressed.
94% recommended
Healthy in Charlotte
35 people mentioned the Shrimp Grits

Fixe

$$$$·Southern·
Downtown
1,698 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
  • Comfort Food
Nice to be in a restaurant again, thanks for being clean and organized and not requiring those dumb masks.
90% recommended
Good for Groups in Austin
82 people mentioned the Fried Chicken

High Street Caffe & Vudu Lounge

$$$$·Creole / Cajun / Southern·
West Chester
1,026 reviews
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Special Occasion
Very rare to find an authentic Cajun restaurant in the Philly suburbs . The food was terrific, service was top notch, they even had a few Louisiana beers in bottle like Abita and BRead more
98% recommended
68 people mentioned the Jambalaya
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Highball & Harvest

$$$$·Southern·
I Drive / Sand Lake
676 reviews
  • Local Ingredients
  • Creative Cuisine
  • Fit for Foodies
We had a very good meal at Highball & Harvest. The service was outstanding and the food was great, especially the venison. We'll definitely return.
95% recommended
Fit for Foodies in Orlando / Central Florida East
26 people mentioned the Shrimp Grits

Highlands Bar & Grill

$$$$·Contemporary Southern·
Birmingham
2,751 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for Anniversaries
  • Good for a Date
simply the best! great food and atmosphere! a value for what you get!
98% recommended
32 people mentioned the Grits Appetizer
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Hot and Hot Fish Club

$$$$·Contemporary Southern·
Birmingham
862 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Romantic
Good but not quite what it used to be
93% recommended
59 people mentioned the Tomato Salad
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Ida Claire

$$$$·Contemporary Southern·
North Dallas / Addison
2,377 reviews
  • Comfort Food
  • Great for Brunch
  • Casual
Everything was very good. The appetizer plate was not as good as it used to be and the "mac and cheese" was not great. Drinks and service were excellent(wait staff and host).
92% recommended
Most Booked in Dallas
54 people mentioned the Shrimp Grits

Kitchen Notes - Omni Nashville

$$$$·Southern·
Downtown
1,348 reviews
  • Great for Brunch
  • Casual
  • Comfort Food
Well its Coronavirus Nation right now so a gorgeous 200 person dining room in the middle of the SEC Mens Hoops Tourney, and I was 1 of only 5 people in the entire restaurant. This Read more
90% recommended
Great for Brunch in Nashville
46 people mentioned the Fried Chicken

The King's Kitchen

$$$$·Southern·
Uptown
1,651 reviews
  • Comfort Food
  • Casual
  • Local Ingredients
Delicious food, a really spectacular waiter (thanks, Joe) and a community-loving mission that makes you feel happy about every dollar you spend. If I was local, I'd be here weeklyRead more
94% recommended
Fit for Foodies in Charlotte
104 people mentioned the Fried Chicken

Langdon's Restaurant

$$$$·Southern·
Mount Pleasant
1,680 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Neighborhood Gem
Our Favorite Fine Dining Restaurant in Charleston, going back there in a couple of weeks
98% recommended
26 people mentioned the Shrimp Grits
Not available on OpenTable
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Madison's

$$$$·Southern·
Highlands / Sapphire
1,195 reviews
  • Romantic
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for Anniversaries
The food was excellent and I especially appreciated Madison’s having a sommelier on staff ready to offer guidance with the wine menu.
94% recommended
Notable Wine List in Asheville / Western North Carolina
10 people mentioned the Short Rib

Mandolin

$$$$·Southern·
Raleigh
1,747 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Local Ingredients
  • Neighborhood Gem
Wonderful food & drink. Our server was excellent too, very knowledgeable and personable.
87% recommended
Great for Brunch in Raleigh
26 people mentioned the Caramel Cake

Maple Tree Inn

$$$$·Creole / Cajun / Southern·
Homewood
1,087 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
  • Worth the Drive
Love Maple Tree Inn. This is my second time visiting. Everyone in my party really enjoyed their meals. We had Crawfish etoufee, Southern catfish, and Dis & Dat Platter.
96% recommended
Best Overall in South Suburbs
11 people mentioned the Jambalaya

Merrick Inn

$$$$·Southern·
Lexington
2,016 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for a Date
  • Good for Anniversaries
Pure tradition and excellence! Southern specialities supremely prepared. The ambiance is fabulous and if you are looking for Kentucky tradition, look no further. The menu, while trRead more
98% recommended
Neighborhood Gem in Central Kentucky
63 people mentioned the Fried Chicken

Midtown Cafe

$$$$·Southern·
West End
2,466 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
  • Business Meals
I would definitely recommend this restaurant. The food was amazing. The Lemon Artichoke salad was divine. i also felt comfortable with the infection control and social distanciRead more
96% recommended
Best Overall in Nashville
114 people mentioned the Artichoke Soup

Mozelle's Fresh Southern Bistro

$$$$·Southern·
Winston-Salem
1,723 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Special Occasion
Special occasion! First time out to eat (lots of curbside in the meantime) since early March! We dined outside, and had a wonderful meal - my wife and I always share, and we had thRead more
98% recommended
Best Overall in Greensboro / Winston Salem / Highpoint
141 people mentioned the Tomato Pie

Mr. B's Bistro

$$$$·Creole·
French Quarter
3,007 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for a Date
  • Good for Anniversaries
Stephen and Terrance took great care of us! Food was exceptional!
95% recommended
Creole in New Orleans / Louisiana
48 people mentioned the Barbecue Shrimp

Muriel's Jackson Square

$$$$·Creole / Cajun / Southern·
French Quarter
7,092 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for a Date
  • Good for Anniversaries
We came here on our first night as homeowners in New Orleans, a few weeks after restaurants started to reopen after the Covid-19 lockdown. We encountered only kind people, careful Read more
98% recommended
Creole / Cajun / Southern in New Orleans / Louisiana
381 people mentioned the Bread Pudding

The Olde Pink House Restaurant

$$$$·Southern·
Savannah
16,412 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Romantic
  • Good for a Date
Anniversary
94% recommended
Best Ambiance in Savannah
745 people mentioned the Flounder

Preserved Restaurant

$$$$·Southern·
St. Augustine
2,729 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for a Date
  • Good for Anniversaries
One of our favorites, its usual 5 * rating! And we felt safe and relaxed because of the safely precautions: porch seating, 50% occupancy, socially distanced tables and servers wearRead more
95% recommended
Best Ambiance in Jacksonville / Northeast Florida
166 people mentioned the Preserves

Rapscallion

$$$$·Southern·
Greenville Avenue
612 reviews
  • Creative Cuisine
  • Handcrafted Cocktails
  • Neighborhood Gem
Rapscallion is always a treat. The Nashville-style fried chicken is great and the service and ambience make for a great date.
89% recommended
18 people mentioned the Fried Chicken

Restaurant IRON

$$$$·Southern·
Pensacola
1,476 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for a Date
  • Creative Cuisine
It was great! Good food with a great presentation!
98% recommended
Best Overall in Northwest Florida
20 people mentioned the Bread Pudding

Restaurant R'evolution

$$$$·Creole / Cajun / Southern·
French Quarter
4,912 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Romantic
  • Good for a Date
The experience from get-go was unique. Excellent cocktails, wines. Unique interpretation of creole cuisine. A feast visually and for your taste buds. Superb dessert. Had a great tiRead more
92% recommended
Creole / Cajun / Southern in New Orleans / Louisiana
229 people mentioned the Beignets

Restaurant Rebirth

$$$$·Creole / Cajun / Southern·
Warehouse District
1,199 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for Anniversaries
Pork belly appetizer amazing. Best chicken and sausage gumbo we’ve ever had. Roast duck, salad, gnocchi and creme brûlée all delicious. One of the best overall meals we’ve had in aRead more
95% recommended
Best Overall in New Orleans / Louisiana
15 people mentioned the Fried Oyster

Root & Bone

$$$$·Southern·
East Village
775 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Great for Brunch
Food was amazing! Service was great. The staff is very friendly and attentive.
94% recommended
110 people mentioned the Fried Chicken
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RT's Restaurant

$$$$·Creole / Cajun / Southern·
Alexandria
1,335 reviews
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Casual
  • Authentic
Great food, relaxed atmosphere. First time out since the lockdown.
97% recommended
54 people mentioned the Crayfish

Rx Restaurant

$$$$·Southern·
Wilmington
1,041 reviews
  • Local Ingredients
  • Creative Cuisine
  • Fit for Foodies
Great food and customer service!
92% recommended
45 people mentioned the Shrimp Grits
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South City Kitchen Buckhead

$$$$·Southern·
Buckhead
1,657 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Comfort Food
  • Business Meals
I recently celebrated a bridal dinner with my bridesmaid and the service was absolutely amazing. I cannot recall the waitresses name but she was very friendly and knowledgeable of Read more
91% recommended
Southern in Atlanta / Georgia
65 people mentioned the Fried Chicken

South City Kitchen Midtown

$$$$·Southern·
Midtown
5,502 reviews
  • Comfort Food
  • Good for a Date
  • Neighborhood Gem
A must stop whenever in Atlanta. Southern food with class and great service.
92% recommended
Southern in Atlanta / Georgia
377 people mentioned the Fried Chicken

South City Kitchen Vinings

$$$$·Southern·
Vinings
3,352 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for Birthdays
The added 20% service charge was a surprise. Understandable, but not welcome. Also, drink menu needs to be corrected. Bourbon and Rye are not the same. Other than that, the usuaRead more
97% recommended
Southern in Atlanta / Georgia
175 people mentioned the Fried Chicken

State of Grace

$$$$·Contemporary Southern·
Upper Kirby / Shepherd Corridor
1,788 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
  • Creative Cuisine
Birthday dinner was great. Our first time at this restaurant. The food was delicious and service was excellent.
94% recommended
Best Overall in Houston
49 people mentioned the Hush Puppies

Stella's Bistro - Simpsonville

$$$$·Southern·
Greenville
1,309 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Good for Anniversaries
  • Special Occasion
Great place to eat most amazing food! Me and my fiancé favorite place to eat!
95% recommended
Southern in South Carolina
44 people mentioned the Shrimp Grits

Toutant

$$$$·Southern·
Buffalo
1,614 reviews
  • Comfort Food
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
We had such an enjoyable evening! I do not believe there is one thing on the menu that is not “out of this world” delicious! And three of our party were eating keto—and they were mRead more
93% recommended
112 people mentioned the Jambalaya
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Urban Grub

$$$$·Southern·
Nashville
3,537 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
  • Fit for Foodies
James our server was above and beyond wonderful! The food was outstanding!
94% recommended
Outdoor Dining in Nashville
164 people mentioned the Shrimp Grits

Willa Jean

$$$$·Southern·
Central Business District
1,476 reviews
  • Great for Brunch
  • Comfort Food
  • Casual
First time will go back
92% recommended
Great for Brunch in New Orleans / Louisiana
49 people mentioned the Avocado Toast

Yardbird Southern Table & Bar - Miami

$$$$·Southern·
Miami Beach / South Beach
5,986 reviews
  • Comfort Food
  • Good for a Date
  • Casual
My server was awesome. Super friendly and attentive. The food was spectacular. I brought a friend there for a birthday brunch and he loved it.
94% recommended
522 people mentioned the Fried Chicken

Yardbird Southern Table & Bar - The Venetian Las Vegas

$$$$·Southern·
The Venetian and Palazzo
5,186 reviews
  • Comfort Food
  • Good for a Date
  • Fit for Foodies
Went to Yardbird for my husband’s birthday. The service was excellent (Tabitha) with great recommendations and just the right amount of attention. The food was excellent as wellRead more
94% recommended
Most Booked in The Strip
438 people mentioned the Fried Chicken