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A counter in front of a giant grill.
Wood-fire cooking is the center of the kitchen at Southbound.
Mike Ledford

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Elegant Interiors Set the Scene for Wood-Fired Dinners at Southbound on Cannon Street

A first look at the upcoming Cannonborough/Elliotborough restaurant in Charleston

Erin Perkins is the editor of Eater Carolinas.

Across the Lowcountry, there are plenty of restaurants boasting wood-fired menus, but not many, or perhaps any, can claim that the kitchen’s only source of cooking is wood — but the owners of forthcoming Southbound (72 Cannon Street, Charleston) are up for the challenge. Ryan and Kelleanne Jones (also of Kiki & Rye and Community Table) have spent the past four years bringing their idea of live-fire cooking to Charleston.

The kitchen at the upcoming Cannonborough/Elliotborough restaurant runs on a wood-fired hearth and a Grillworks grill based on Argentian-style cooking. Ryan and his crew will have the task of keeping the oak burning at precise temperatures throughout dinner service. “There’s no propane,” explains Kelleanne, “No stove.” “There’s nothing to fall back on,” says Ryan.

The menu is “American influenced,” and features high-end proteins like dry-aged steaks and black sea bass, with a sprinkling of fine dining ingredients like foie gras and sweetbreads. Sides, like coal-roasted potatoes or cauliflower with furikake, are intended to be shared by the table.

The space at 72 Cannon Street was previously a residence destroyed by arson in 2011. The current landlord rebuilt the two-story historic house with a restaurant in mind. The building now features an iron staircase anchoring the dining room with accents of green Moroccan tile, white marble tables, brushed brass accents, and surprising details, like the original roof lining an accent wall in the second-floor dining room. Kelleanne scouted local design and antique stores for all the furnishings.

Before moving to Charleston, the Jones ran a restaurant near Hartford, Connecticut, named the Mill at 2t, which received a favorable review in The New York Times. The concept was very similar to Southbound, with an open kitchen, but Ryan always knew he wanted to take it to the next level with a live-fire kitchen. “I’ve always had this obsession in my mind,” says Ryan, “so we wanted to do this to do something different.”

Once open (which seems like very soon), Southbound will open daily for dinner service from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Take a look around the dining area here, before it’s open to customers.

A dining room with white marble tables and rattan-back chairs.
Kelleanne designed the interiors for Southbound.
Mike Ledford
Glossy green tiles on the wall.
Green Moroccan tiles add a splash of color to the first-floor dining room.
Mike Ledford
The first-floor dining room.
Mike Ledford
Southbound is set to open soon.
Mike Ledford
A metal counter in front of a brick grill.
The chefs counter faces the hearth and the grill.
Mike Ledford
Green tile on a wrap-around bar with six seats.
The hottest seats at Southbound.
Mike Ledford
A marble-top bar with bottles of liquor behind it.
The upstairs bar at Southbound.
Mike Ledford
A bar with a gold light fixture overhead.
With two floors and outdoor dining, Southbound can seat around 100 diners.
Mike Ledford
Many of the photographs in the restaurant are from Jesse McCann, who also created the branding for Southbound.
Mike Ledford
A sliding door leads to the upstairs bathroom.
Mike Ledford
Kelleanne sourced every detail for the restaurant.
Mike Ledford
A red metal tin wall in an intimate dining room.
The team used the original roof to make up the back wall of the upstairs dining area.
Mike Ledford
Two-top tables on a small patio.
There’s an intimate terrace for couples’ seating.
Mike Ledford
Gold details and marble give the space an upscale feeling.
Mike Ledford
An earthenware plate with gold cutlery.
Each plate is unique, from artist MaryMar Keenan.
Mike Ledford
The exterior of the restaurant.
The building at 72 Cannon Street had to be built back up after an arson attack in 2011.
Mike Ledford
A small sign with “southbound” in a gold font.
Only a small sign on the sidewalk marks the restaurant.
Mike Ledford

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