Charleston chef continues history with diverse Lowcountry cuisine

Black History Month

NORTH CHARLESTON, SC (WCBD) – As Gullah-Geechee cuisine continues to evolve, an award-winning Lowcountry chef says he uses his imagination to add spice to his culinary creations.

Nigel Drayton, owner and operator of Nigel’s Good Food in North Charleston and Ladson, reached way back for a memory of when he was about 4-years-old.

“My fondest memory was my grandmother waiting for her son to come down from Albany, NY. He was a chef and would wear a uniform and big top hat and would come cook chicken chow mein,” he remembered. “I was so impressed. That was my first time seeing someone in uniform.”

Drayton connected to the idea. He started cooking at the age of 15.

“I always felt the need to take on as much knowledge about the business as I could and being creative and not wanting to do the same thing over and over again,” he said.

Drayton said his family comes from a long line of business owners. “That’s always been my mind,” he said. “That’s what we are supposed to do.”

He and his wife, Louise, met while working in a restaurant—and soon they were recreating Lowcountry favorites.

“Our food is family,” he said. Louise agreed and added, “It’s definitely one of the main ingredients in a good time.”

And that’s the philosophy in Nigel’s Good Food. Two very successful restaurants and a third on the way.

“When creating our menu, we did not want to want to specify one specific type of person or food just so one type of person can eat it. We wanted to diversify our menu so everyone can enjoy it.”

Nigel, continuing history, dishing up diverse Lowcountry cuisine.

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