By LARRY VAUGHT
This is the perfect time of year at Myrtle Beach to do different things than when I visit in the summer months, so today we headed to Georgetown to visit Hopsewee Plantation. It’s the home of Declaration of Independence signer Thomas Lynch Jr. and was South Carolina’s first National Historic Landmark.
And get this — plantation owner Raejean Beattie and her husband not only live in the plantation house that is about 285 years old, but she was also in the kitchen working during lunch. I had a chance to talk with her — my first time to speak with a real plantation owner who was a wealth of information.
She also knows a thing or two about cooking because lunch was delicious. I had jalapeno shrimp corn chowder — something I had never had before — and then the shrimp and grits that came with pimento cheese biscuits and pickled okra. How could you not love that?
After I made a post on social media, I found out that a friend, Joye Hunt of Stanford, had been to Hopsewee and was a Raegean Beattie fan, too.
“I love Hopsewee and RaeJean. It is just a wonderful place and she is a wonderful hostess as well as a wonderful cook,” Hunt said. “I have a signed copy of her cookbook that I dearly love. Love Gingin’s soup, chicken salad, and numerous desserts!”
Our plantation tour guide was so patient and considerate showing us the plantation house from cellar to the second floor where Raejean and her husband spend most of their time.
You can also wander the grounds on your own and on the Riverwalk I loved seeing so many lizards scurrying around and moving with me or from me.
It’s a totally different experience from being in the heart of Myrtle Beach and one I would recommend, especially during the offseason. The plantation has even started to become a destination wedding site as well as a favorite of many senior citizen tour groups.