When it comes to dining out Southern style, Charleston has no lack of variety. From the fanciest fried chicken to the cheesiest grits, down-home cooking is probably what we do best. So it’s no surprise that yet another locally bred restaurant has popped on the scene to join the ranks of those who aim to serve traditional, finger-licking Southern goodness.

Housed in what was once the James Island Applebee’s, Lucky’s is the newest endeavor from John Davis (formerly of Rita’s Seaside Grille) and his wife Kimberly Traynor, who in a short 60 days have transformed a once dingy chain restaurant into a clean, simple, and bright full-service lunch and dinner joint that eschews the overplayed sports bar atmosphere commonly found on James Island (and fortunately lacks the kitsch of its previous tenant).

“It was a great find,” says Davis of the building, which stood empty at 1271 Folly Road between downtown and the beach for nearly a year. With help from executive chef and San Francisco transplant Michael Rogers, Lucky’s has a menu chock-full of hearty sandwiches, economy-sized salads, and entrées that will satisfy even the most finicky carnivore.

“We wanted to create a humble, family friendly menu where our customers could have healthy choices, but could also indulge,” says Davis. Expect to see dishes on every end of the Southern spectrum, from a tea-smoked salmon salad to maple-glazed pork chops served with baked apples (Davis’ personal favorite). Classic dishes make an appearance as well, like buttermilk fried chicken, Gouda mac and cheese, and an in-house pulled pork plate served with collard greens.

Lucky’s will open for lunch at 11 a.m. on weekdays and at 10 a.m. for brunch on both Saturday and Sunday. To learn more, check out their Facebook page or give them a call at (843) 641-7147.

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