A Charleston Tour and the Pâté of the South

Historic Charleston SC

For those of you covered in snow, I’m taking you to Charleston, South Carolina, a city filled with historic charm and where the average January low is 43 degrees, downright balmy compared to the current conditions in the Midwest and Northeast!

While I’m not digging out from snow, I am snowed under with several long overdue household projects. I whipped up this pimento cheese this summer, I hadn’t posted the recipe yet, so I pulled photos from the archives from our visits.

Pour yourself a glass of Sweet Tea (or something warmer :) take a tour of Charleston, and help yourself to the Pâté of the South!


Pimento Cheese is the Pâté of the South~ a staple like Sweet Tea, served at luncheons, showers, and right alongside cold fried chicken and deviled eggs at a covered-dish supper or proper Southern picnic!

Hominy Grill

The pimento cheese at Hominy Grill in Charleston, SC was included among five top pimento cheese spreads from eateries across the South in Southern Living Magazine.


Spelled either pimiento or pimento, for those above the Mason-Dixon line, we pronounce it pimenacheese in the South :)

However you pronounce or spell it, ingredients vary and favorite recipes are debated from the brand of mayonnaise to the blend of cheeses and additional ingredients like onion, paprika or jalapeño peppers, to name a few.


Charleston, SC is one of our favorite places to visit for the weekend, so I’m including photos of Charleston from the archives for a tour along with a taste of Hominy Grill’s Pimento Cheese.

Hominy Grill’s Pimiento Cheese adds a splash of bourbon for a depth of flavor to its blend of sharp Cheddar and Parmesan cheeses. Ancho chile powder and ground cumin give this pimiento cheese a smoky flavor!


Hominy Grill’s Pimiento Cheese,

recipe courtesy Southern Living

3/4 cup mayonnaise (no self-respecting Southerner uses any mayo besides Duke’s :)

1/2 cup jarred sliced pimiento, rinsed and finely chopped

1 1/2 tablespoons bourbon

1 teaspoon ancho chile powder

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

6 cups freshly grated sharp Cheddar cheese (1 1/2 lb.)

3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Garnish: fresh cilantro



For good pimento cheese texture, grate the cheese by hand (pre-shredded is dry!), half on the large holes on a box grater and half on the small holes.





Stir together mayonnaise, pimiento, bourbon, ancho chile powder, cumin, and freshly ground pepper. Stir in Cheddar cheese and Parmesan cheese until well blended. Garnish, if desired.



I brought home this Charleston landmark kitchen

towel from Charleston Cooks! along with a recipe for

The Grits that Stole Christmas last December.



charleston rainbow row








And a printable recipe of Hominy Grill’s

Pimento Cheese can be found here.

Gates, Gardens and Window Boxes of Historic Charleston, South Carolina | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #gates #windowboxes #gardens #Charleston

Enjoy more scenery with Gates, Gardens and Window Boxes of Historic Charleston, HERE.

Thank you for your visit!

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  32 comments for “A Charleston Tour and the Pâté of the South

  1. January 24, 2014 at 6:23 am

    I love Charleston! I also love pimento cheese. I have yet to find a recipe for it that I didn’t like. I would definitely try this one.

  2. January 24, 2014 at 6:30 am

    I absolutely love Charleston and have happy memories of visiting.

    I use Duke’s.:-) Awhile back I was craving “pate” of the south and the only cheese in the house was velveeta…and is that really cheese? It was purchased for the famous dip but I never got around to making that. So when the urge for pimenacheese hit me like a ton of bricks, I made it with velveeta. Of course, that was just an emergency situation. It’s back to a block of sharp cheddar, hand grated. Mother would roll her eyes at any other!

  3. January 24, 2014 at 7:05 am

    I love your photos :)

  4. January 24, 2014 at 7:23 am

    Need to visit Charleston on our next, “girly weekend.” love pimento cheese spread! Love cheese of all kind! Yum!

  5. vicky
    January 24, 2014 at 8:02 am

    I’m really looking forward to trying your recipe for the Hominy Grill’s pimento cheese spread. Sounds soooo good! Another wonderful recipe for pimento cheese comes from Sarah O’Kelley at The Glass Onion in Charleston. I’ve made it many times and always get asked for the recipe. Any self-respecting pimento cheese is made with Dukes!

  6. paula
    January 24, 2014 at 8:19 am

    Thank you for the sunny Charleston tour !! We made a day trip there while we were staying in Ga. a few years ago, and I don’t think a day was long enough!! I have never had the cheese spread but someday :).
    have a super day !

  7. Katherine G
    January 24, 2014 at 8:23 am

    Am planning my first trip to Charleston,for late March – thanks for the preview – I’m taking notes! Any other “not to miss” shops – museums?

  8. January 24, 2014 at 8:23 am

    Thank you for the mini tour of Charleston, Mary. It’s a place that I’d love to visit, along with Savannah. The pimento cheese spread looks and sounds delicious. Happy weekend to you. xo

  9. January 24, 2014 at 8:46 am

    Mary, I got up to get a fresh cup of coffee when I saw you post! Who knew that some folks added bourbon to their pimiento cheese? Probably explains how it is pronounced here! Your photos have me longing for a day trip to Charleston myself!

  10. January 24, 2014 at 9:01 am

    Oh dear Mary, I have not seen Duke’s mayonnaise here. I must look carefully next time I shop. I have friends that swear by grating cheese by hand too.

    I love your pics of Charleston. We were there in the fall. I didn’t post about it because it was a busy time. Your pics are so much better than mine. I must have made thirty pics of St. Michael’s church. The days were overcast and I was not satisfied with my pictures.

    Love your wrought iron gate pictures. I want to visit there in the spring for the garden tours.

  11. January 24, 2014 at 9:14 am

    Two of my very favorite things, Charleston and pimenacheese! Never had it with bourbon, now that deserves a try! I am VERY picky about my pimento cheese, but this sounds so interesting! I warmed up a lot looking at your beautiful photos, I do know how hot in can be there too! I love the perspectives you chose for your photos, there is so much eye candy there it’s hard to narrow it down but you’ve captured Charleston’s essence so well. Thank you for the lovely tour and a new recipe for the Pate of the South!

  12. January 24, 2014 at 9:34 am

    Beautiful pictures. Made me want to go back. Thank you!

  13. January 24, 2014 at 9:43 am

    I really enjoyed the tour! We are headed there for our 35th anniversary this June. I have never had pimento cheese, but it sounds wonderful. I will have to try it!

  14. Peggy Thal
    January 24, 2014 at 9:44 am

    Beautiful photos of a beautiful town! Haven’t be to Charleston in years would love to go again. The cheese looks delicious. They have a version of that here in Virginia ( Duke’s of course) . I think I just might make your recipe this weekend. Thank you for your lovely blog!

  15. franki
    January 24, 2014 at 9:52 am

    Boy, do I need me some Charleston about now. Brrr! Must do that cheese for Super Bowl…and then those urns (bottom photo) in my “to do” list! franki

  16. January 24, 2014 at 9:55 am

    As you show, Charleston is a delight, and I love the pimento cheese from Hominy Grill, too. In fact, I like pimento cheese in most of its variations.

  17. Janet
    January 24, 2014 at 10:49 am

    I am lucky enough to live here in beautiful Charleston. We love visitors anytime of the year.

  18. Kim
    January 24, 2014 at 10:53 am

    Love Charleston and want to go back so badly.

  19. Debbie
    January 24, 2014 at 11:58 am

    Thank you for the beautiful tour of Charleston. I would dearly love to visit.

  20. January 24, 2014 at 1:52 pm

    Thank you so much for taking us to beautiful Charleston. So much character and beauty there. I wish it was warm here in NJ.


  21. January 24, 2014 at 1:56 pm

    I love Charleston and I want to go back, such a pretty city…Christine

  22. January 24, 2014 at 2:36 pm

    We love pimento cheese and I make it fairly often…along with egg salad and chicken salad spread, it is a go to for simple and fast lunch fare… I use my “Georgia Peach” grandmother’s recipe, except I do add a touch of rough country mustard and she never did.

    I lived in SC for over 23 years and my children all grew up there…We loved visiting Charleston and did quite often, sometimes just for the day, since it wasn’t so far from where we lived.

  23. January 24, 2014 at 4:19 pm

    Your pimento cheese looks wonderfully delicious, Mary. But before I eat, I’m going on a pinning spree! Whee! Hope it warms up this weekend.

  24. January 24, 2014 at 7:29 pm

    I wish you could look through your computer right now, because I swear to you, I’m bundled up on a chilly Alabama night eating . . . pimento cheese! I didn’t make it myself this time, I picked it up from the Piggly Wiggly this morning, anticipating a warm night at home!

  25. January 24, 2014 at 8:19 pm

    love love loved your tour, the tablecloth (?) is adorable, makes it all the more enjoyable, very clever of you ;-) gee, you clever???!

    warm weather here too, was 80 this week, we need a good rain dance…

    so i got a quick potent recipe for you, omg, totally looped and happy, go make page 82… fanfreakintastic! i weill need to sober up manana for photos, but i will be sleeping like a log tonight ;-)

  26. January 25, 2014 at 12:02 am

    Your Charleston tours are consistently *****, but the creative presentation of this post is beyond top ratings. Very clever indeed, Mary. Makes me want to pack my bag and head to Charleston.
    Thanks for the recipe from Hominy Grill. We are fans of pimento cheese. Had a pimento cheese sandwich for lunch today at the antique show. ;-)
    Snow here over night, but not enough to build a snowman. Back into the 70s for the weekend.

  27. January 25, 2014 at 4:35 am

    My Pate did not have bourbon in it-sounds good! Believe it or not, I’ve seen Duke’s Mayo at our Walmart up here. I haven’t tried it but I know folks down south love it. Stay warm:@)

  28. Annie
    January 25, 2014 at 10:59 am

    Well, this is fabulous, I am going to Charleston for a couple of days in March & will indeed look up the Hominy Grill. I have just now printed my copy of the Pimiento Cheese recipe. The dash of bourbon & the cumin did it for me…I’m going to make it for Super Bowl sunday. xoxo, Annie

  29. Marilyn
    January 25, 2014 at 5:52 pm

    Love Charleston, husband and myself went there a few years ago for the annual garden tours, just beautiful but it was just the coldest March. You could tell the natives from the tourists, we froze and all the natives had their winter coats, scarfs and gloves, we were dressed for Spring. Hope to get back there in warmer weather soon. Love your pimento recipe.

  30. January 26, 2014 at 1:04 pm

    Bourbon?..the secret ingredient!…Well that is a recipe for pimento cheese that is landing in my recipe box!….I so love Charleston…the magnificent gates, the window boxes, the enchanting courtyards…love spending time in that wonderful city … eating my way through it!!

  31. January 27, 2014 at 9:05 am

    I need to go back to Charleston. My travel plans there keep getting postponed. That is a great tea towel! Your southern debate over the ingredients in pimento cheese remind me of our New England debate regarding clam chowder! But I don’t think any one puts bourbon in the chowder :) And I’ve never seen Duke’s up here but now I’ll be on the watch. Have a wonderful day and thank you for the tour. Linda

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