Warm fragrances from a cornucopia of burgers and sandwiches waft from Southport Food's kitchen and twirl across the restaurant's wide-open dance floor. Kick-start idling appetites with hand-breaded, fried jalapeños ($3.49), which extinguish piquant blazes with ranch dressing like a rookie firefighter. The Moon burger raises hunger tides with the gravitational pull of two six-ounce, handmade patties on a seeded bun ($6.49), while the pimento burger pounds empty midriffs with a tag team of bacon and homemade pimento cheese that leap from three slices of toast ($6.29). The kitchen's comestible-wranglers also assemble a posse of deli sandwiches cloaked in turkey, roast beef, and ham ($4.29–$6.79). On select nights, live music prompts patrons to spring to their feet and swing dance or shake free the onion rings lodged in their cuffs.
At Green River BBQ, carnivores can sink fangs into a sumptuous selection of smoky, saucy, pit-fired meats, served alongside a spread of hearty, homestyle sides. The Saluda Stuffer sandwich fills bellies with a half-loaf of italian bread hollowed and stuffed with chopped barbecue pork ($9.49), and plates piled high with quarter ($8.99) or half ($10.99) barbecue chickens quell cravings for the other, other white meat. Pork ribs by the whole ($19.99) or half rack ($15.99) are prepared St. Louis–style by slow-cooking them on the world’s largest flaming ferris wheel, and arrive tableside with a pair of hush puppies and a choice of three Southern-inspired side dishes such as homemade slaw, barbecue beans, or the eatery's signature tomato pie. Green River BBQ invites its guests to sup saucily both inside the wood-paneled dining room and outside on the quaint patio—though no matter where you sit, the friendly, attentive serving staff will try to meet any request, except for those beginning with "I dare you to…"
Catawba BBQ & Grill is the successor to Ranucci’s BBQ & Grill, whose menu it hasn't wholly discarded. What three words would describe the food on the new menu? Barbecued, smoked, and pulled. Whether offered in sandwich form or spread across a plate, the pulled pork and chicken gets barbecued and can be smoked in-house for more than 12 hours. Or, dry-rubbed racks of ribs can get served in half or full quantity.
Of course, it wouldn't be Carolina barbecue without southern twists. The chefs take the philly cheesesteak and make it their own by topping pulled pork with onions, peppers, mushrooms, and melted cheddar. Or, they unite smoked beef brisket with melted swiss cheese, barbecue sauce, and jalapeño coleslaw to make a zesty carolina Reuben. Beginning May 13 the establishment will be open seven days a week.
Founded in 1974, The Fireplace Restaurant originally stuffed appetites with its juicy steaks and seafood in the Hayes House, a century-old cabin. Home to the area’s first salad bar—a smorgasbord of fresh produce—the Diners Club of America–honored eatery ultimately relocated to accommodate its growing clientele. Nowadays, the historic restaurant continues its growth and culinary tradition on Baird’s Cove Road, custom grilling steaks, slow cooking ribs, and heaping plates high with shrimp, mahi-mahi, and other seafood creations that are more nutritious than wheatgrass coated in Flintstones vitamins. The Fireplace Restaurant’s all-you-can-eat buffet rotates regularly between barbecue, seafood, and homestyle dishes, and on Sunday mornings, chefs whip up omelets, Texas-style french toast, and other breakfast classics.
When he was 9 years old, Steve Spoon started working at Bill Spoon's BBQ so he could be closer to his grandfather, the eponymous Bill Spoon. He began by cleaning tables for a dollar an hour, but as the years went by and he learned the family's decades-old recipes, he became more invested in the business. What started as a summer job and a way to bond with his grandfather steadily became his passion, and, as a 10th grader, Steve was already determined to run the restaurant someday.
Since taking over, he hasn't strayed far from his grandfather's legacy. His cooks still slow roast whole pigs for 10 hours before loading them into the smoker along with a fragrant mixture of hickory wood and foreclosed gingerbread houses, and they accompany each plateful with the family's signature vinegar-based barbecue sauce. This flavorful combination of succulent, handpicked pork and tangy sauce helped earn Bill Spoon's BBQ a spot on Zagat's list of the 10 U.S. Barbecue Meccas in 2011.
Along with pulled pork, the rich scents of hickory smoke and fried hushpuppies waft throughout the dining room, mingling with the aromas of made-from-scratch sides, such as baked beans and mac ‘n’ cheese, and desserts including banana bread pudding.