One of the things that make golf such a enduring social activity is the tradition of the "19th hole": a bar or pub with good food and drink, and brilliant views of the course and its surroundings, where your foursome can sit, relax and recount details of your round.
South Carolina is noted for a wide array of such establishments, whether the fare is hot dogs and sodas or gourmet meals with wine, beer or spirits. If you're playing one of these golf courses, your experience isn't complete without an hour (or more) afterward to cap off the perfect day.
Based on an informal poll of players, including the 100-member South Carolina Golf Course Ratings Panel, here are the 19 best 19th holes:
The Ocean Course, Kiawah Island Resort - For post-golf views, it's hard to beat the one from the Ocean Course's Ryder Cup Bar in the Robert A.M. Stern-designed clubhouse. Large windows overlook the famed Pete Dye course (18th green especially), plus the dunes and the Atlantic. If the weather's nice, sit outside on the veranda. Food prices are premium but, as one TripAdvisor review noted, so too is the quality and service. Choices range from burgers to seafood and fowl, with a full drink menu.
Harbour Town Golf Links, Hilton Head Island - Located inside the Harbour Tour clubhouse, rebuilt in 2015, Links, an American Grill is as luxurious as the rest of the course's plush facility. Views from the second floor include the first tee, ninth green and practice range, seating much in demand during the RBC Heritage each April. Besides lunch, the grill offers full dining and bar services, including local craft beers on tap.
Caledonia Golf & Fish Club, Pawleys Island - A Myrtle Beach-area favorite, the clubby wood-walled Grillroom has plenty of indoor seating, plus a wide range of beverages and food. But the real draw is the wraparound porch overlooking the 18th green, salt marshes and a tidal creek in the background, from which spectators can watch players try to negotiate the water-guarded green.
Aiken Golf Club - While hardly a resort experience, Legends Grill holds a treasure trove of the club's historic past. Originally part of the long-ago Highland Park Hotel, the course hosted such famous players as Chick Evans, the Turnesa brothers, Babe Zaharias, May Dunn and Patty Berg, and displays an array of black-and-white photos of each. The course also was site of the movie "Who's Your Caddy?" and has posters to prove it. Food (burgers, barbecue) is simple but excellent.
Pine Lakes, Myrtle Beach - The Grand Strand's oldest golf course has a classic two-story clubhouse designed by architect Robert White and was site of the founding of Sports Illustrated. Check framed photos of that event, then visit the Myrtle Beach Golf Hall of Fame, located off the back porch. It's a great place to unwind and reminisce.
The Golf Club at Wescott Plantation, North Charleston - The large, spacious Wescott Bar and Grill features a wide variety of beers (on tap and bottled), wine and spirits, plus a complete lunch and dinner menu. There's plenty of room, plush seating and a number of big-screen TVs for players, family and friends.
Wild Dunes Links Course, Isle of Palms - With its large, comfortable bar looking out on the first and 10th tees, the Dunes Deli is a favorite place to hang out. Besides grab-and-go sandwiches, pizza and salads, the bar/grill offers a hot breakfast, plus lunch and dinner specialties such as its fish chowder during cold months and its signature Bloody Mary year-round.
True Blue, Pawleys Island - Similar to its sister course Caledonia, True Blue's airy, window-lined bar and grill also has an elevated porch overlooking the 18th green, which is guarded front and left by water. The clam chowder and burgers are favorites, and there's a full bar, too.
Barefoot Resort, Myrtle Beach - The gathering place for players of all four resort courses, Putter's Pub at Barefoot Resort offers plenty of seating, big-screen TVs to catch up on the day's sports results, an excellent restaurant with great food and a view of the Fazio course's 18th green.
Pawleys Plantation Golf & Country Club - Both the Sawgrass Room and the Palmetto Pub, with full restaurant and bar services, overlook the 18th green of the Jack Nicklaus-designed course. The outside veranda is perfect on warm evenings for watching players finish their rounds.