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“Perfect spot!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Kudu Coffee & Craft Beer

Kudu Coffee & Craft Beer
4 Vanderhorst Street, Charleston, SC 29403 (Formerly Kudu Coffee House)
843-853-7186
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Ranked #42 of 758 Restaurants in Charleston
Price range: $0 - $10
Cuisines: Coffee Shop, Bar, Café
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Doing business, Outdoor seating, Dining on a budget
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Late Night
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Perfect spot!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 19, 2013 via mobile

Seriously good. Had the best beer ever and was well served by the staff. Highly recommend the coffee and the chocolate croissants. Bring your friends and sit outside for a couple of hours.

  • Visited September 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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114 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    76
    30
    7
    0
    1
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Jacksonville, Florida
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
24 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“Beer & Coffee Heaven in the Holy City”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 17, 2013

My first encounter of this new funky little favorite of mine was Kudu Coffee and Craft Beer in Charleston, SC. There it sat, hidden on a regally named side street of downtown Charleston with nothing more than their logo above the door. Kudu’s selection was small but rich in local flavor. It featured craft breweries from the area including Holy City and Palmetto and only the finest latte art in your midafternoon pick-me-up. Kudu’s location had a great courtyard that doubled as a performance venue for local talent. A perfect pick for a Friday happy hour to get your weekend off to a good start.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charleston, South Carolina
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Good coffee, mediocre service”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 9, 2013

We loved this off the beaten path coffee house when my husband and I began dating! It did change owners a couple of years ago but the coffee is still delicious. I particularly love the Iced Chai Latte, and my husband enjoys going for the craft beer. But I feel that due to the College of Charleston campus they have gone overboard on the ID checking, as the last reviewer stated, and have almost become hostile. My husband and I went and got beers and sat outside, then I went back in to get a second round and was questioned about who it was for and was not allowed to buy it without him there. I'm sure they deal with CofC students trying to get by with fake IDs constantly, so I do have some sympathy. But between that and the WiFi hoarding, this place has gotten a little too "uppity" and is not as appealing to their demographic of students and 20s-30s. But if you don't care about all that and would like a nice coffee or beer outside on the patio with some entertaining local music, hit this place up!

  • Visited August 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charleston, South Carolina
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Tending towards materialism”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 1, 2013

I have been a regular at Kudu since 2008 when I first moved to downtown Charleston, two blocks away. The espresso has always been on the better side for Charleston, and the outdoor seating area is an atypical bonus for a downtown coffee shop in Charleston. Through 2009, I attended Kudu daily to study for medical school - wireless was free and the ambiance both inside and out was pleasant.

Kudu then changed ownership. While the espresso remained high-quality, the ambiance quickly declined as the new owners removed the beautiful African decor that the original proprietors were particularly found of. Unfortunately, they replaced the lost decor slowly... I didn't take to the new minimalist look, so I decreased my attendance to once a week. I continued to go simply due to the convenience of Kudu's location and the simple fact that it is better than Starbucks. Further, I do my best to support local, non-chain businesses.

Within the last 2 years, Kudu has begun selling craft, draft beer. My wife and I are both craft beer connoisseurs, so we used this as a reason to visit Kudu more frequently - typically on our way to dinner, etc. While the beer selection is small, it tends to be of high quality with a decent local representation.

Unfortunately, several events/changes have lead us to ban Kudu from our weekly downtown outings:

1) The new owners have slowly been withdrawing access to their wifi putatively due to "crowding". This signifies that they don't desire to be part of the local academic culture present in the immediate community, but instead they are focussed on keeping their customers and profits on a continuously revolving door.

2) The culture at Kudu has slowly shifted away from having a high-ratio of professionals, making it more difficult to make spontaneous, good conversation.

***3) My wife and I have never been treated with more contempt, anywhere, than by one of the newer employees at Kudu. We were enjoying some beer and tea there last week when a highly-anxious employee barked at us to show ID. (I have a greying beard and my wife is clearly a woman of age to drink.) While this was disturbance enough to send us off, the employee escalated the situation. I had left my wallet at home (of course a mistake), so I offered to return with it regardless of the fact that my age was clearly visible. Instead of accepting my offer like a professional, the employee grabbed my beverage from me and threw it in the bushes! I asked him to refund our purchase, but he merely walked off while instructing us to leave. We were frightened by the employee's erratic behavior, so we left without hesitation. I interpret this too as an establishment that is more intent on myopic monetary gain and not customer retention.

I've tried contacting the owners to alert them of this employee, but I have not heard from them in days, so I suspect they do not intend to address this. I can only hope that this review serves as a warning that the climate in Kudu is currently changing for the worse.

  • Visited August 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
30 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
“Kudu Can-Do It Right!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2013 via mobile

Just visited Charleston and one of the biggest highlights in our day was Kudu Coffee! I knew it was gonna be good when there was a long line of people waiting. I was thinking, "I bet it'll be worth the wait." Bit there was LITTLE wait time! The lined moved fast and the coffee was MORE than superb! Smooth and rich, not CHARRED like a national chain. Their store was very trendy and clean. The courtyard was peaceful and inviting. The baristas artwork on my latte amazing! This WILL BE a "daily" visit next time in Charleston! I wouldn't entertain going to any others! The only problem I had was finding a parking spot, but that's like MOST of Charleston anyways. If not already, this will be one of Trip Advisers "Awarded Stores" for sure! Congrats Kudu! You get 5 Xtra Shots for EXCELLENCE!!!

  • Visited August 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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