This is part of the Ask Raskin series in which our food critic answers readers’ questions about the Charleston area restaurant scene.
Q: I am familiar with many good restaurants in Charleston but where can a man of my age take his wife for dinner and dancing?
A: The problem with Charleston restaurant space leasing for so much per square foot is owners generally don’t want you dancing on it. There are plenty of nice places downtown which host live music of the gentle jazz variety, including Charleston Grill, High Cotton, Barsa and The Establishment, but none of those dining rooms are set up for foxtrotting.
Of all the things which are strange about our modern world, elites shunning social dance is among the very weirdest. Until recently it wasn’t considered odd to dance between drinks at fancy restaurants or in private homes. Now that practice is mostly confined to cruise ships and wedding receptions.
My guess is grown-up dancing will eventually make a comeback. People can sit on bar stools only for so long.
In the meantime, though, your best option is probably Prohibition, which offers salsa music on Tuesdays and swing music on Sundays. The Upper King Street restaurant is so invested in folks getting on the dance floor that it schedules dance lessons (although its publicist assures me that the live music sessions are also perfectly appropriate for people who’ve been dancing for decades.)
Prohibition also serves an excellent menu, so you can have roasted bone marrow and Lindy Hop, too.
But if your tastes in restaurant food aren’t so refined, another highly local option is to shag at Tru Blue's House of Wings, which touts its ranch mesquite hot wings. The Mount Pleasant restaurant welcomes the East Cooper Shag Club every second Friday, which means this coming Friday is Shag Night.
According to the club’s website, anyone “dedicated to the preservation of beach music and shag dancing” is welcome to join. Sounds like you and your wife might fit the bill.