One of the constants of my life is my affinity for fried shrimp. It’s one of the first meals I can remember eating out as a child, and although my tastes have wildly expanded since then — I love beef tartare and soba noodles with abandon — there always comes a time when I say, “I’m craving fried shrimp.” Despite our local, beautiful, fresh, sweet South Carolina shrimp in abundance during the season, when that craving hits, I used to have to scour my brain for a good fried shrimp fix. So I started making a list a while back. Now I share it with you.
Feel free to add to it with some of your own, granted the spot’s fried shrimp meet the following requirements: shrimp must be sweet and plump, lightly breaded, flash fried, and served hot. Size doesn’t matter, and sides don’t matter, although if there are fresh french fries, that’s always a bonus. Don’t go for too greasy, don’t let them sit and get cold, and whatever you do, don’t warm them up as leftovers. There is no other time than the present for a plate of fried shrimp…
Blackbird Farms & Market
1808 Bohicket Road, Johns Island
I’m bookmarking this list with another carry-out (well, mostly) place, this one on Johns Island. This market uses local shrimp whenever they’re available, and the portions are generous, the breading light, and there’s an added bonus of being able to shop local for all kinds of other goodies as well while you wait for your order. If the scent of your fresh fried shrimp is too much to make it all the way home, there are a few covered picnic tables outside where you can eat.