At the rate Greenville is growing, it seems like a new restaurant opens up every 15 minutes, pandemic be darned. From casual fare to fine dining, in Downtown and surrounding communities, hot new spots are popping up all over the place. The only question is, which new restaurants do you need to try out first?
For casual fare Rocky’s Hot Chicken Shack and Home Team BBQ are dishing out classic Southern cuisine. For a higher end dining experience, Coral, Urban Wren, and Camp are the perfect destinations for your next date night or special occasion. Less traditional dining experiences are on the menu as well courtesy of the kitchens at Pangaea Brewing Company and M. Judson Booksellers. Enjoy our list of new (within the last year) eateries all over town that you definitely need to try for your next lunch or dinner date out as you find your new favorite spots to eat.
Food trucks are a great means of entry into the restaurant business but, more often than not, they fail to make the next big step into a brick and mortar establishment. Such is not the case for Hip Burger who quickly amassed a loyal following with a burger that I dare say is becoming the stuff of legend. This popularity has led to a physical location just off of I-385 on Butler Rd, meaning we can easily acquire a Hip Burger anytime we want without chasing a food truck around town. Fear not, however, as the truck has not been parked and still offers the mobile option several services a week.
Recommended for New and Popular Restaurants because: One can hardly be hip without a regular supply of Hip Burger in one’s life.
Brett’s expert tip: Don’t want to drive to Mauldin? The truck is still making the rounds about town.
M. Judson Booksellers continues to redefine everything one might expect from a local bookstore. From sit-down suppers, local pop-ups, and an extensive cookbook selection, quality cuisine has always been a major part of the conversation. It makes sense, then, that they now give us Camilla Kitchen which dishes out specialty coffees and tea, an array of scones, breakfast bars, and muffins, as well as a gluttonous selection of cookies and brownies. The jalapeño, bacon, and cheddar scone borders on a life changing experience and having a thoughtfully curated beer and wine menu to wash it all down is only the icing on the cake.
Recommended for New and Popular Restaurants because: M. Judson’s opening of Camilla’s Kitchen means it is a great place to get a bite to eat while you shop.
Brett’s expert tip: Strollers and wheelchairs should not be daunted by the front steps –” an elevator is accessible from the rear entrance of the building.
Located in the former home of GB&D and The Village Grind, Bar Margaret is the latest new addition to The Village of West Greenville. Sure, they technically opened a little over a year ago but the closing of things during the pandemic still gives the establishment a new restaurant feel. The bar features an ever changing list of super creative cocktails and the kitchen is cranking out some really relatable plates for meat eaters and vegetarians alike. They are open for lunch, dinner, and they even stay open late night if you just want a cocktail after dining at any of the other great establishments The Village has to offer.
Recommended for New and Popular Restaurants because: With great food and fantastic cocktails, Bar Margaret is a great new addition to The Village of West Greenville.
Brett’s expert tip: With the exception of the “Cola Fashioned” the cocktail menu completely changes just about daily.
We typically do not think of great cuisine when we walk into a brewery. Maybe there is a food truck or serviceable snack but the focus is generally on what is coming out of the brew house. Pangaea Brewing Company turns that idea on its head with a delicious menu featuring sharable plates, pizzas, and salads. A sausage plate featuring a variety of sausages from Atlanta’s Spotted Trotter is a game changer and the brick oven pizzas are good enough to convince the whole family that they should go to a brewery for dinner. Not to be outdone, Pangaea’s beer selection is perfect for washing it all down in style.
Recommended for New and Popular Restaurants because: A brewery does not have to amazing food but, thankfully, Pangaea does.
Brett’s expert tip: Get. The. Sausage Plate.
Home Team BBQ has evolved from a modest, neighborhood barbecue joint in Charleston to an important destination and near household name for anyone who has ever visited. That success has led to expansion, first along the coast and then to Columbia and, finally, Greenville. The mix of experimental vision and traditionally Southern flavors makes this an interesting and innovative take on barbecue that you will likely fall in love with at first bite. Just to sweeten the deal, Double Stamp Brewery is set to open soon right next door bringing the beloved beer & BBQ combination to one great location right on Laurens Rd. just minutes from Main St.
Recommended for New and Popular Restaurants because: Home Team BBQ is a renowned destination in Charleston but now the Upstate can enjoy it right in our own backyard.
Brett’s expert tip: It may be a BBQ joint but don’t sleep on the burgers or tacos coming out of the kitchen.
The Nashville hot chicken craze has been making its way across the US and several versions have found their way to the Upstate. Of those, Asheville, North Carolina’s Rocky’s Hot Chicken has been the biggest hit in town and for good reason. A variety of options from dark or white meat cuts, wings, sandwiches, and even pot pies mean there is a lot to try across regular visits. Heat options start with a heat-free plain or honey style seasoning and work their way up incrementally to a Ghost Pepper fueled Extra Hot Seasoning that goes even beyond the trademark Rocky’s Hot flavor.
Recommended for New and Popular Restaurants because: Rocky’s serves up the best “Nashville style” hot chicken on the scene.
Brett’s expert tip: To-go diners –” don’t be daunted by the line. Skip it and pick up your meal from the bar.
Camp is the newest addition to the Table 301 group but its identity is all its own. Located in the brand new Camperdown Plaza just off of Main St. in the shadow of the AC Hotel, Camp delivers “comfort food with a touch of global flair” with a heavy emphasis on local seasonal ingredients. Executive Chef Drew Erickson is a Greenville native who earned his culinary stripes at the California’s renowned French Laundry before returning to the Upstate to start his own restaurant. That experience combined with Chef Erickson’s own talent make Camp a culinary adventure you want to enjoy sooner rather than later.
Recommended for New and Popular Restaurants because: Camp has earned rave reviews from the moment it opened and the praise is well deserved.
Brett’s expert tip: Watch your time on the weekends as Camp closes for a few hours between lunch and dinner service.
Society Sandwich Bar & Social Club is a great new addition to the Downtown Greenville food scene. Conveniently located on E. Coffee St, the restaurant/bar offers a great selection of sandwiches, salads, and ramen bowls. While the “JBC” burger might blend in amongst a ton of other sandwich options, it is not to be overlooked. Two double stacked smash patties are perfectly cooked and paired with bacon and “government cheese” for a simple yet wildly satisfying burger experience. It is straightforward and totally unpretentious (just like the rest of the menu) making it one of the best burgers in town.
Recommended for New and Popular Restaurants because: Greenville has been long overdue for a creative and high quality sandwich shop like Society.
Brett’s expert tip: Get two, they’re small! Sandwiches are priced and sized in a way that you will definitely want to get more than one.
Like a lot of places, Urban Wren had the misfortune of opening up right before the onset of the pandemic last March. Since reopening, however, the restaurant is amazing guests with creative fare representative of the season. Chef Taylor Montgomery sources much of the restaurants fare from his own farm, Montgomery Sky Farm, just outside of Asheville meaning farm-to-table cuisine is the order of the day at Urban Wren. The menu offers small plates, shareable dishes, and full entrees making it the perfect landing spot for any appetite or mood. Whatever you get, the Chicken and Burnt Ends or the Semolina Dumplings are not to be missed on any visit.
Recommended for New and Popular Restaurants because: Local, farm to table dining done right always deserves proper acclaim on the restaurant scene.
Brett’s expert tip: Ask for directions for the restrooms or you are guaranteed to get lost in a maze of back hallways the building shares.
Coral is one of the newest additions to the Downtown Greenville dining scene and they have been beyond impressive since they opened their doors. Featuring only the freshest seafood, the menu is innovative yet relatable with so many tough decisions to make on every visit. The seared scallops served over wild mushroom risotto just might be one of the best dishes all of Downtown Greenville has to offer and is complemented by an extensive wine and cocktail list. A special bar menu also allows guests to enjoy Coral as a casual dining experience in addition to the formal setting of the dining room.
Recommended for New and Popular Restaurants because: It is a new and innovative dining experience that never disappoints.
Brett’s expert tip: Make your arrival an easy one with the valet parking available right out front.