Lunchtime Indecision Solved With These 10 Greenville Restaurants

There are plenty of places in Greenville that offer stellar lunch specials, and will have you in and out the door in a hurry, but that's not what makes a good lunch spot.  

We think the best places for lunch should offer an inviting atmosphere with service that doesn't rush you, but also doesn't make you wait an hour for your food.  It should be a place where you can gather with friends, clients and co-workers.  And most of all, the food should be outstanding and reasonably priced, without compromising on quality.

With that in mind, we're recommending 10 restaurants that span the spectrum of cuisine, from Mediterranean bites at Pita House to the Mission-style fare at ASADA.  We've also rounded up places where you'll find inventive sandwiches, including Sully's and Groucho's.  And we haven't forgotten about Southern favorites like Mary's or Brick Street Cafe.


Groucho's is a Southern institution, with over 30 locations across North Carolina and South Carolina. The inventive sandwiches and signature sweet tea keep patrons returning again and again. For the ultimate Groucho's experience, order one of the famous "dippers," served warm on a sub roll, piled high with meat and cheese, and accompanied by your choice of dipping sauce (we recommend the Formula 45). If a regular dipper is too large, don't overlook the junior versions on the menu. And if that's not calling your name, don't worry, you're sure to find something you like among the other many specialty sandwiches and salads on offer.

Woodruff Road

With several Upstate locations to choose from, Tropical Grille is a beloved local favorite. Serving health-conscious Cuban cuisine, the food here is simple and the vibe is relaxed. On the menu, you'll find everything from various "chops" – chicken, veggies or pork served over rice with your choice of sauce – to wraps, sandwiches and salads. Sauce choices include classics like hot sauce, sweet and sour, and salsa, as well as more inventive options like guava BBQ and garlic cilantro. A number of fresh sides are available to accompany your meal.

This West End café has a reputation as a spot for ladies who lunch, but it's a great destination for anyone who likes good food in a relaxing setting. Lunch offerings include a chicken salad sandwich, crab cake sandwich and a baked brie plate, as well as a variety of other sandwiches and salads. Fruit plates are popular and the menu variety will please any appetite. Best of all, their cakes and other sweets are sure to knock your socks off. More specifically, patrons travel far and wide for their sweet potato cake.


Willy Taco began making a name for themselves when they opened their doors in Spartanburg in 2013. It didn't take long for Greenville to catch on, and Willy Taco responded by converting the old Feed & Seed building on Laurens Road into their second outpost. Committed to fresh food and zero waste, this Mexican eatery just delivers. From the creative margarita menu to the generously-portioned tacos, you're doing yourself a disservice if you don't give this place a try. For instance, where else are you going to find a Guns N' Rosemary margarita (with blackberry-rosemary syrup, house lemonade and a "gunpowder" rim)?

Bill and Judy Balsizer are the driving force and the two chefs behind this popular downtown deli, which is consistently packed with folks intent on indulging in the fresh, delicious fare. Known for gourmet sandwiches, soups, and entree salads, Two Chefs offers temptations like the Stone Ave Burger, grilled Italian turkey sandwich and Asian chicken salad. You'll also discover fantastic baked goods, meals to go, wines, and gift baskets. There's a second store, Two Chefs Deli, at 8590 Pelham Road.

South Pleasantburg

Incredibly popular for lunch, the Pita House is always crowded. Still, the service is fast and the patrons are never rude. Plus, the Mediterranean food is consistently fantastic. Garlicky hummus, fresh-baked pita bread, stuffed grape leaves and hot falafel will appease your appetite for something unusual. When you place your order at the counter, keep an eye out for a table. Turnover is quick, but seats are at a premium. The best deals are plates, which come with a sampling of several foods. Share with some friends, and don't forget the baklava. Be sure to bring cash; they don't accept cards.

Sully's Steamers in downtown Greenville has a monopoly on the steamed bagel sandwich, and that's okay because they have perfected it. With a creative menu, chock-full of local references and intriguing options, this is a place you'll want to visit again and again. It's where locals gather for lunch, and it's where we take our out-of-town visitors, because a Sully's sandwich is an experience. You'll find simple steamers like the Tiger Paw, with cream cheese and cinnamon sugar, as well as specialty sandwiches like the ever-popular Griswold, with turkey, bacon, BBQ, pepper jack, provolone, lettuce and a parm peppercorn sauce. Beware: these sandwiches can be messy to eat, but you won't even care.

Wade Hampton

ASADA began as a food truck, affectionately nicknamed Lola, before moving into a brick-and-mortar location. Lola still makes her rounds, but it's nice to know you can enter the cozy, counter-service space on Wade Hampton Blvd. Serving Mission-style dishes, ASADA offers some of the best and most innovative Latin American cuisine in Greenville. You'll find tacos, nachos, quesadillas and burritos (which are humongous) – all with your choice of protein – in addition to a long list of sides and vegetarian alternatives. Eat al fresco on the small porch out front, or indoors where you can admire paintings by local artists (which are also for sale).

Mary's at Falls Cottage
Photo courtesy of Libby McMillan

Nestled along Main Street, this quaint cottage dates from the 1890s. Once a private residence, its position on the edge of Falls Park offers lovely views of the Reedy River. The historic building has an adjacent patio which is one of the city's most popular dining spots and provides a relaxed atmosphere for a leisurely lunch or weekend brunch. On the menu, you'll find Southern-inspired items like Mary's Meatloaf Sandwich (our favorite), hot chicken salad or a crabcake BLT. The staff here are friendly and helpful, making Mary's a shining example of Southern hospitality.

As can be increasingly said about Greenville restaurants, Caviar & Bananas is a counterpart of the original location in Charleston – one that this city is incredibly grateful to have. This culinary hot spot offers breakfast, lunch, dinner and weekend brunch, in addition to their case of prepared foods, which you can pick up morning, noon or night. The owners are passionate about food and equally so about your experience with it, ensuring a good meal. After all, food changes lives, and no one knows that better than the owner of C&B who stopped for coffee on the morning of September 11th, a move that would spare his life and forever impact its course.


Meet Maggie Tuten Tyner

Maggie wasn't born in Greenville, S.C., but she was certainly raised here, having called this her home for the last 20+ years.  She even graduated from local Furman University and went to work...  More About Maggie