American Grocery Restaurant
American Grocery offers refined American cuisine (and a frequently changing menu) that emphasizes the highest-quality ingredients from local, regional, and national producers. The attention to detail carries over to their bar, which features handcrafted cocktails like the Marie la Poire, with Hanger One spiced pear vodka, rosemary-juniper simple syrup, and fresh lime juice. If the extensive list of cocktails fails to intrigue, there’s always the Bartender’s Choice—just pick a flavor profile and enjoy some creative mixology.
$$$-$$$$, D. Closed Sunday & Monday. 732 S Main St, Greenville. (864) 232-7665, americangr.com
Chicora AlleyChicora Alley’s Caribbean riff on traditional Mexican and Southern fare offers signature crab cakes or mountain-high nachos, shrimp and chicken burritos, quesadillas, and more. Throw in regular live music and a beer list that features everything from $2 PBRs to high-gravity drafts for a regular post-work pit stop.
$-$$$, L, D. Closed Monday. 608-B S Main St, Greenville. (864) 232-4100, chicoraalley.com
High Cotton Maverick Bar & Grill
$$$-$$$$. L (Mon–Sat), D, SBR. 550 S Main St, Greenville. (864) 335-4200, highcottongreenville.com
Southern Culture Kitchen & Bar
IIndustrial meets organic with handcrafted farm tables, bronze chandeliers, and reclaimed wood beams throughout the dining room. Expect an uptown spin on comfort food, like tater tots served in a parchment-lined Chinese takeout container with pimiento cheese fondue. There’s also the pulled pork nachos: a tower of fried wonton trips interwoven with pulled pork, slaw, melted cheese, and barbeque sauce. And in a nod to the service industry, there’s now Monday night brunch.
$$, L (Mon–Fri), D (Mon–Sat), SBR. 2537 N Pleasantburg Dr, Greenville. (864) 552-1998, southernculturekitchenandbar.com
The Lazy GoatThe Lazy Goat’s tapas-style menu is distinctly Mediterranean. Sample from menu of Graze and Nibble dishes, which features simple, elegant offerings such as papas bravas and grilled calamari. Take in a view overlooking the Reedy River and the TD Amphitheatre at the full bar, or relax with a glass of wine on the open-air patio as the weather warms up.
$$-$$$, L, D. Closed Sunday. 170 River Pl, Greenville. (864) 679-5299, thelazygoat.com
Liberty Tap Room Bar & GrillLocated next to Fluor Field, Liberty Tap Room Bar & Grill is both pre-game watering hole and after-work hangout. Dinner choices range from the classic burger and juicy steaks to spinach pizza. Gather with friends around the long bar to enjoy one of the nearly 50 brews on tap.
$-$$$, L, D, SBR. 941 S Main St, Greenville. (864) 770-7777, libertytaproom.com
Nantucket Seafood Grill
Greenville may be landlocked, but Rick Erwin’s restaurant brings us closer to the sea. The day’s fresh catch tops the menu, grilled, seared, broiled, blackened, or in chef-designed specialties. If you’re killing time pre– or post–Peace Center performance, grab a seat at the elegant bar. The Smokeshow, a blend of tequila, elderflower liquer, lime, and grapefruit, makes for an interesting balance between tart citrus and savory smokiness (the glass is rinsed with Laphroaig 10 Year Scotch).
$$-$$$$, D, SBR. 40 W Broad St, Greenville. (864) 546-3535, nantucketseafoodgrill.com
Northampton Wines & Wine Café
Linger in the relaxed atmosphere of Northampton’s wine bar. Choose a bottle from the thousands for sale, open it for a corkage fee, and enjoy it with a selection of cheese. Then venture to the dining area for dinner from an ever-changing menu that typically includes seafood, beef, and wild game. Enjoy lunch on Saturdays.
$$-$$$$, L (Sat only), D. Closed Sunday. 211-A E Broad St, Greenville. (864) 271-3919, northamptonwines.com
The Nose Dive is city bar meets corner bistro. A wide range of beer (local, domestic, international), wine, and an ambitious menu that hits nearly every continent make it hard not to dive in. With Chef Spencer Thomson, formerly of Devereaux’s, now in charge of the kitchen, look for black truffle tater tots to make an appearance as the Nose Dive continues to elevate the gastro-pub experience.
$-$$$, L, D, SBR. 116 S Main St, Greenville. (864) 373-7300, thenosedive.com
Pomegranate on Main
Pomegranate serves traditional Persian cuisine in an eclectic Eastern ambience. Attentive service, reasonable prices, and flavorful variety, such as the slow-cooked lamb shank or the charbroiled Cornish hen kabobs, make this an excellent spot for lunch or dinner. Also try the martini menu.
$$-$$$, L, D. 618 S Main St, Greenville. (864) 241-3012, pomegranateonmain.com
$$$-$$$$, D, SBR. 207 S Main St, Greenville. (864) 232-7007, sobys.com
Stellar Wine Bar & RestaurantThe polished concrete bar (embedded with slow-blinking pinpricks of light) is without a doubt the centerpiece of this intimate, second-story space. Enjoy elegant tapas and an extensive wine list (including beer and liquor) with a Main Street view. For some nibbles, try a cheese board of the chef’s daily selections or the brie and guava flatbread.
$-$$$, L, D. 20 N Main St, Ste B, Greenville. (864) 438-4954, stellarwinebar.com
Barley's Tap RoomPizza and beer—flowing from more than 27 taps downstairs and another 31 upstairs—are what bring students and young revelers to Barley’s. Besides the tap, there’s a list as long as your arm of selections by the bottle. Try your luck upstairs at the billiards tables and the dartboard lanes.
$-$$, L, D. 25 W Washington St, Greenville. (864) 232-3706, www.barleystaproom.com/greenville
The CazbahFor a unique dining experience, try the Cazbah. Linger over a light dinner, or create a sumptuous meal of the menu’s tapas, such as the lobster cigars or sesame-seared tuna. While you won’t find sweet tea, an extensive wine selection will delight those looking for a more sophisticated evening. There is a sister location in Greer.
$, D. 16 W McBee Ave, Greenville. (864) 241-9909, www.thecazbah.com
Compadre'sThis Mexican grill and cantina in the West End is a good spot to grab a bite and a margarita before a Drive game. Tried-and-true combinations of chalupas, burritos, tacos, and chile rellenos don’t disappoint, but authentic Mexican accents spark dishes such as a ribeye with cactus (nopales) and camarones a la mojo de ajo (grilled shrimp in a garlic-laced marinade). Enhance your meal with a sample from their sizeable tequila selection.
$, L, D. 929 S Main St, Greenville. (864) 282-8945, compadresmex.com
Ford's Oyster HouseFord’s—a nod to Greenville’s first Ford dealership of 1918 in the same building—combines fresh seafood with Cajun flavor straight from New Orleans, along with the Big Easy’s penchant for after-hours fun. Nibble on the gator bites or shrimp-jalapeño beignets while unwinding with buds and suds.
$-$$, L, D, SBR. Ford’s Oyster House & Cajun Kitchen, 631 S Main St, Greenville. (864) 223-6009, www.fordsoysterhouse.com
The Green Room
Like a European brasserie, the Green Room’s diverse menu features standout dishes that change with the time of day. Start your day with eggs Benedict or down a Lil’ Piggy pork sandwich with sweet potato fries for lunch. For dinner, the melt-in-your-mouth, sweet chipotle meatloaf is the ticket. Wash it down with selections from the tap and a premium beer list that leans toward the Belgian and German end of the spectrum.
$$$, B, L, D, SBR. 116 N Main St, Greenville. (864) 335-8222, thegreenroomupstate.com
The Trappe DoorA rathskeller vibe pervades this underground tavern that boasts an incredible beer program, with 10 on tap and more than 150 bottles. Mussels come in six different preparations, served with crispy homemade frites. Other Belgian specialties include waterzooi (a creamy seafood stew) and carbonnades flamandes (beef stew braised in Belgian beer).
$$, L, D. Closed Monday. 23 W Washington St, Greenville. (864) 451-7490, trappedoor.com
The Velo FellowCozy in a funky way, the Velo Fellow is a hip pub under the Mellow Mushroom. Sandwiches, salads, and soups form the core of the menu, which also includes fish and chips, shepherd’s pie, and—in a twist—tofu Marsala. Squeeze into a booth and unwind with friends over craft brews, or chat it up with bartenders and regulars. The Velo Fellow offers traditional absinthe service, complete with a silver-plated brouilleur.
$-$$$, L, D, SBR. 1 Augusta St, Ste 126, Greenville. (864) 242-9296, www.thevelofellow.com
Breakwater is one of those places that make Greenville shine: an unpretentious hotspot that serves exquisite food (chili-rubbed duck breast with mushroom risotto, sage-roasted butternut squash, natural jus, and pinot syrup) and creative drinks in a New York City-meets-Lowcountry vibe. Grab a Moscow Mule (served in frosty copper mug) at the mod red-on-white bar, or select a bottle from the impressive, backlit wall of wine.
$$$-$$$$, D. Closed Sunday. 802 S Main St, Greenville. (864) 271-0046, breakwatersc.com
This nighttime hotspot has a focus on fun, from the city-slick décor to the dance floor upstairs. Even the food shines as small plates to mix and match (try the sexy roasted beet salad or the lobster “mac n cheese”). True to its namesake address, 21 East has 21 specialty cocktails in addition to 12 rotating draft selections and a hefty selection of wines.
$-$$, D. 21 E Washington St, Greenville. (864) 271-0533, 21eastbarandgrille.com
Hans & Franz BiergartenHans & Franz resides within a Civil War–era brick building, next door to the strip mall housing Two Chefs Deli. Grab a seat at one of the high-topped tables in this cozy space and dig into traditional German fare: schnitzel, bratwurst, spaetzle, fleishkäse, and the like. Of course, you’ll want to wash it down with one of the German or Belgian beers on the extensive international list. In nice weather, enjoy a wurst or a beer in the pleasant, palm-edged cabana bar out front.
$$-$$$, L (Thurs–Sat), D (Mon–Sat). 3124 S Highway 14, Greenville. (864) 627-8263, hansandfranzbiergarten.net
Grill MarksThe newest concept in the Larkin’s family, Grill MARKS marries old-school charm with creative twists for a modern burger joint. Brioche buns sourced from a local baker and 100-percent-certified Angus beef form the base of these succulent burgers. Gourmet cheeses, mushrooms, and bacon round out the list of toppings. Grab a milkshake for the full experience. If you want to experiment, there are also ShakeTails, adult versions of those creamy delights.
$$, L, D. 209 S Main St, Greenville. (864) 233-5825, marksburgers.com
GiatuShades of red, sweeping curves, and moody lighting establish Giatu as a great place for a drink or a meal. Located in the Greenville Marriott, this restaurant serves quirky takes on American standards. Try the tempura pickles, fried in light, crisp batter, served with a Sriracha-ranch dipping sauce. And if you’ve got a craving for something sweet, you can’t go wrong with the vanilla chocolate martini (finished with a Kit-Kat).
$$$$, B, L, D. 1 Parkway East, Greenville. (864) 679-1158, giatu.com
RoostThis latest nod to the enterprising farm-to-table trend lends a modern, tasty addition to North Main. Executive Chef Trevor Higgins brings old-fashioned Southern favorites into the twenty-first century. The focus on local producers carries over into the glass-fronted bar overlooking NoMa Square. Beers from Quest, Thomas Creek, Highland, and Sweetwater showcase regional breweries, while cocktails like the Gentleman’s Agreement (Carolina peach moonshine and black tea) pay homage to local flavors.
$-$$$, B, L, D, SBR. 220 N Main St, Greenville. (864) 298-2424, roostrestaurant.com
Rick's Deli & MarketEnjoy a glass of wine or grab a bottle to go at Rick’s Deli. Gourmet sandwiches, salads, and hot dishes are on rotation at the restaurant and market. For dinner, enjoy charcuterie and fromage (cheese, in American circles) or an entrée from a short but diverse list. Artisanal products, cheeses, and house-made bread make for a fine picnic—just don’t forget Chef Emmanuel Hodencq’s pride: dessert.
$$-$$$, L, D. Closed Sunday. 101 W Camperdown Way, Greenville. (864) 312-9060, rickerwinsdeli.com
Tupelo Honey CafeNeed a downtown restaurant where you can camp out for all three meals? Look no further than Tupelo Honey, where big Southern charm is served with a steaming hot biscuit. Indulge in the famous sweet potato pancakes (topped with pecans and peach butter of course) any time of day, or for a heartier appetite, try one of the mouthwatering sandwiches like the Southern Fried BLT. The Pickled Okra bar, set off in a back room, is perfect for enjoying a cocktail and conversation away from the bustle and noise of the dining room.
$$, B, L, D. 1 N Main St, Suite T, Greenville. (864) 451-6200, tupelohoneycafe.com
Bacon Bros. Public HouseFrom the house-cured, smoked, and dried cuts, to the glass-walled curing room on display, Chef Anthony Gray’s gastropub is a meat-lover’s heaven. And the artisanal care extends to the cocktail list with selections like the Herbal Remedy, featuring Bols Genever, Chartreuse, sage, and lemon rind. Or try the Older Fashioned, with house barrel-aged bourbon.
$$, L, D. Closed Sunday. 3620 Pelham Rd, Greenville. (864) 297-6000, baconbrospublichouse.com
SIPTrue to its namesake, this rooftop tasting room from the High Street Hospitality Group is all about liquid refreshment. A WineEmotion dispenser with more than 40 wines on tap is the main attraction, though easy-drinking sangrias and cocktails pair perfectly with cushioned couches for evening lounging, especially with warm spring breezes around the corner.
$$, D. 103 N Main St, Ste 400, Greenville. (864) 552-1916, highstreethospitality.com/sip-rooftop-lounge
Stella's Southern BistroChef Jason Scholz’s Lowcountry-inspired fare might be what gets you in the door, but don’t sleep on the cocktails. Whet your appetite with a savory pre-dinner Lettered Olive Martini, a shaken blend of Belvedere vodka, vermouth, and green olive juice, topped with buttermilk blue cheese stuffed olives.
$$$, L, D. Closed Sunday & Monday. 684-C Fairview Rd, Simpsonville. (864) 757-1212, stellasbistro.com