The Griffon

The GriffonThe Griffon
The GriffonThe Griffon
Bar, Eatery

18 Vendue Range
Charleston, South Carolina, 29401-2114
United States

(843) 723-1700 | map

View: Place Reviews | Events
Reviews: 14 | Ratings: 29
Photo of Gavage
4.07/5  rDev +1.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4

This is a typical old style english pub that is dark, and has probably a few thousand dollar bills stuck to every available open spot on the walls and ceiling. Smallish bar with some dining tables filling the rest of the room. Electronic beer list above the bar. 16 on draft and probably 40 in cans and bottles. Decent variety here of local and national brands.

Service was friendly and quick. Didn't try any food here. This seems more of a tourist stop than some of the other bars in the area, but it is worthy of a visit.

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Photo of JonSC
4.75/5  rDev +18.8%

This is one of my all-time favorite bars in Charleston. They allow folks to decorate and hang dollar bills on the walls and according to Dan, the longtime bartender and now owner there are about 5,000 of them up. They make a lot of effort to find and feature local craft brews, the prices are fantastic and the bartenders very knowledgeable. It is a dark, interesting bar so I enjoy the atmosphere as well. The food is excellent and is the "pub grub" in Charleston by a running long shot. I would definitely recommend checking this place out on any trip to Charleston.

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Photo of joe1510
4/5  rDev 0%

A few pople around Charleston mentioned the Griffon as being a real dive bar with good beer. I had to stop at that point. A cool brick store front, old like the rest of Charleston, with a neat old English looking sign out front. Stepping inside you are greeted by an open floor plans with a moderate sized bar, tons of tables set wherever, and exposed beams. The unique thing about this place is that every open beam of wood has a dollar bill stapled to it for some odd reason, but it's cool. It's dark, it's loud, and there are some dart boards in the back. I like this place.

There are 15 or 16 taps, all craft, from your entry level Sam Adam's stuff to bigger bolder local offerings. The list focuses mainly on local stuff but there's a smattering of offerings from elsewhere.The beer was fresh and delicious. The prices were cheap enough to keep me at the bar for a while, and the bartenders were chatty and regular. A couple dirty jokes, some attitude, some laughs. The Griffon is good times.

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Photo of Jodi215
3.75/5  rDev -6.3%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.25 | food: 4.25

We went here when the place we wanted to go to was not open. I liked this place, it had the feeling of being a place for locals and was a little dark place that had dollar bills stapled to the walls and ceiling. It seemed clean and the service was friendly and fast. Lots of ya'll's ! Beer selection wasn't great but the beers the guys had they liked. I had a BLT and it was quite good although it would have been better on sourdough instead of rye. The other dishes ordered were fish and chips which was said to be delicious and chili cheese fries also delicious. Prices were very reasonable for what we got .

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Photo of black_out
3.35/5  rDev -16.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 4 | selection: 3 | food: 4

My wife and I were in Charleston over the weekend for a wedding and after finding an insanely long line at Closed for Business we decided to check out The Griffon. The beer selection was OK. I had West Brook's White Thai and IPA and both were kind of boring and that was the best they had to offer. The fish and chips I ordered was really solid. Prices were more than reasonable. 5 beers between the two of us, plus dinner and we walked out spending under $50. I wouldn't go out of my way to go to this place, but it wouldn't hurt me feelings if I ended up here again.

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Photo of rtrasr
4.88/5  rDev +22%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75 | food: 5

Not the biggest selection of beers usually have a good selection of local Charleston Beer. That is not an issue for me. I love the atmosphere so cool and dark. It feels really good after being in the hot sun. You almost expect Blackbeard in there. This place does pub grub better than anyplace I have been at prices you will not beat at inferior establishments. This is my favorite place to drink.

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Photo of champ103
3.41/5  rDev -14.8%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.25 | food: 3

A dive that is just around the corner from The Gin Joint. A wood bar zig zags a bit back and forth. Lots of wood everywhere. Tables spread out and plenty of TV's turned to sports.

The service is standoffish, but effective. A few decent offerings on tap. Some local Charleston beers. The food is just pub grub. Some burgers, wings, and other fried stuff. Not much to see here IMO.

Just an OK dive. Nothing all that special, but decent for a beer every once in a while.

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Photo of GJ40
4.06/5  rDev +1.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

A great beer bar with atmosphere and quite a selection on tap. The Griffon is right in the heart of the tourist area but it manages to keep an authentic feel. The location certainly makes it ideal for anyone visiting the city. I saw some accounts that it's an English pub. Maybe it was but I'd consider it more of an American craft beer bar. The décor is simple, worn and comfortable with many of my favorites (exposed brick walls, wood beam ceiling, etc.). The main feature is personalized dollar bills posted all over the walls and ceiling. It’s pretty unique.

They had twelve solid selections on tap including fresh Sculpin. We managed to get the last glass and a half. I also tried a Coast Kolsh. The bartender was a cool guy and the prices were reasonable for the location.

Griffon is a great stop and even better if you combine it with the Charleston Beer Exchange which is close by.

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Photo of jpro
3.9/5  rDev -2.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3

The first time I visited the Griffon was in August of 2002. I had just moved to Charleston and I stumbled into this place looking for a beer to help cool me from the subtropical humidity-induced-near-heat exhaustion I was on the verge of succumbing to... I can't remember what I had that night, but I do know, that over the years (especially the last year and a half or so) the quality of the draft selection has improved dramatically. Last visit was a couple of weeks ago, and they had a nice variety of drafts (about 10 or 12) including Coast 32/50, DFH 90 Minute, Sweetwater 420, and I believe Dale's Pale Ale. Throw in NB Ranger IPA, The Bruery Saison De Lente, Avery Ellie's Brown Ale on previous visits and you can see they manage a pretty tight rotation. Service is always above average - although it gets a little tough to make your way to the bar on a busy Friday or Saturday night. Food is average pub fare - the burgers are good. I enjoy the small, pub-like atmosphere at the Griffon - although it sometimes gets a little too crowded in there. They've hosted events with Foothills, The Bruery and New Belgium (that I know of) so that's a plus. One of my go-to stops when I'm downtown.

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Photo of jwfleck
4.45/5  rDev +11.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

This place is across from the hotel my wife and I stayed in so naturally I had to stop in and see what they had on draft.
I was happy as it was a good selection of things I hadn't encountered before around where I live (Chicago area). Foothills and Southern Tier beers I had never had on tap and really enjoyed both.
They had I believe 12 taps. Only 1 or 2 were majors.
I was impressed, as 4 beers on tap changed over the 2 days in between my visits which I thought was great. Had a He'brew IPA which I liked.
The atmosphere, which featured doodled-on dollars bills on the walls wasn't my taste, really. Also, a bit dark. But I guess this place has been around for years as a college hangout, long before this quality of beers was served.

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Photo of grayburn
4.15/5  rDev +3.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 3

So we walked into a dimly lit quiet frat bar, or so we thought. The Griffon is quite an anomaly, and I most certainly appreciate it as such. A quiet, homey bar, brick faced downtown. I asked Rich at Charleston Beer Exchange for a bar to enjoy a pint or four, and he recommended the close walk that was The Griffon, and I shall in turn recommend it to you, dear reader.

The quality of the selection and the persons serving it were really the highlights of the griffon. The owner himself actually offered to hold and recook our food while the nerds reviewing went on a ghost tour of epic proportions starting at said cullinary establishment....just an excellent place.

The food was a bit average, but I will most certainly be a repeat customer, hell of a place that Charleston has here, the ultimate in customer service.

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Photo of kiawahisland
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5

Stopped in here last night after dinner so I did not try the food. It did smell good though.

Impressive draft list for a tiny place. Probably 10-12 taps with all craft beer and a few imports. Regional beer was well represented as they had Coast, Highlands, Terrapin, and Sweetwater on hand. I ordered a Dogfish Head 90 min, and Coast Hop Art IPA. Atmosphere was pretty cool and fit in well with the rusticness of Charleston. I used to drink here when I was in College back in the mid 1990's and it really hasn't changed much with the exception of the beer quality. The Griffon is a pretty solid place to grab a few beers when you are downtown. I would reccomend it.

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Photo of taylorhamrick
3.8/5  rDev -5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

I heard some good things about this place, and with a little cajoling of my friends (they like craft beer, but aren't exactly obsessed with it), I made it in to see if it was true. I was really impressed, at least for downtown charleston. There were about 7 craft taps, which is good for downtown. The bar wasn't too loud, though it was kind of hard to talk and hear depending on the song playing. It's a little dark, comfortable, and there are dollar bills all over the wall. Not the greatest of atmospheres for me, but honestly, for the East Bay bar area, I would rather be here than most of the other places. The beer all seemed good, and it looked to be taken care of, good pours with adequate head and not poured short. A pretty good selection for downtown Charleston - I was more than happy with it. The service wasn't incredible, about standard, the bartender asks what you want, gets it for you, and you pay whenever you're done. But it wasn't packed, so it all happened relatively quickly. The selection, I'll reiterate, will beat most any bar in the area. I don't know about the bottle list, but there were plenty of craft taps, some local stuff (COAST) and a few interesting things to have. I didn't try the food, I don't even know if there is food. And the prices are about on part, maybe a little better than you would expect. I live pretty far away, but hopefully I will be able to make it back down for a few drinks more often.

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Photo of bigsilky
4.2/5  rDev +5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

8 months ago The Griffon had a wallpaper scheme courtesy of the Treasury Dep., and maybe 2 taps worth having. Today, the dollar bills on the wall have not moved. While the beer has significantly improved. In that time I have seen: Maharaja, Foothills Seeing Double, Fat Tire, 1554, Dale's Pale Ale, Smuttynose Porter, Smutty Maibock, Coast (HopArt, Kolsch, Boy King), Mojo Risin, Stone Levitation etc. The point is that Dan and Scotty are enthused to be in the craft beer business and are not afraid to put good beer on. Prices rarely exceed $6 a glass.

Food: Well, it's typical pub grub (wings, burgers, etc.) but well done. I certainly recommend Fried Chicken Wednesday, especially if you spent most of Tuesday evening at The Griffon. Very well priced.

Service: No complaints.

Selection: At the moment there maybe 2 taps that I avoid, everything else looks just fine.

Quality: The only complaint I can come up would be the dirth of strange glassware. Not that any establishment in town has proper glassware. Although you may request the stronger beers in New Belgium Tulip glasses. It's a start.

A solid place, and maybe a block down Prioleau St. from the Charleston Beer Exchange. If you pay for parking, you might as well make a day of it.

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The Griffon in Charleston, SC
Place rating: 4 out of 5 with 29 ratings