Chef Tres Jackson is the executive chef and owner of Sorghum & Salt, an upbeat eatery in Downtown Charleston, SC. Offering a menu that pushes the boundaries in Lowcountry cuisine, dishes are vegetable and seafood-centric small plates created with unexpected cooking techniques and ingredient combinations. Celebrating the locavore lifestyle, menu items change daily based on what is fresh and in season and what Chef Jackson is inspired to create each day.
While Sorghum & Salt is a rather new restaurant on the Charleston food scene, Tres is no stranger to owning and operating a local hotspot. Previously the head chef and owner of Epiphany, a Tuscaloosa, AL favorite, he brings his progressive culinary style and years of experience back to his home state of South Carolina. His start in the restaurant business began as a busboy, as he worked to learn the industry from the ground up while studying restaurant management at the University of Alabama.
His commitment of using local ingredients he credits to his childhood, during which he spent summers shucking corn and shelling peas while visiting relatives. He believes his long-spanned philosophy of sourcing ingredients locally is more of a social movement rather than a restaurant movement, as he encourages educating youth of the benefits of eating products from close-by farms and fisherman and putting money back into the community.
Epiphany, Tres Jackson’s first restaurant, became a household name and go-to for Tuscaloosa locals. Before the opening of Epiphany, Tuscaloosa was a town without one farmer’s market. Within a few years of Epiphany’s opening, Tuscaloosa became home to three farmer’s markets, all of which were heavily utilized by Chef Jackson. Before closing its doors in 2016, after over 13 years of success, Tres, alongside his assistant chef, Joel Frederick, came together to open Animal Butter in Tuscaloosa, an international street food restaurant aligning with the same fresh food initiative Tres swears by.
After spending a significant amount of his life in Tuscaloosa, he found his way back home to South Carolina to continue creating vegetable-based dishes in Charleston at his 186 Coming Street location for Sorghum & Salt. With unrelenting creativity, a signature culinary style and dedication to support his community, Chef Tres Jackson has earned a dedicated following, outstanding reviews, a nomination as Eater’s Restaurant of the Year and an invitation from the James Beard Foundation to cook at the James Beard House.