Excellent | Worth a Detour
Devine Cinnamon Roll Deli
Review by: Michael Stern
Named not because its cinnamon rolls are divine (they are!), but because it is located on Columbia’s Devine Street, this happy bakery opened in 2014 and has since become a magnet for hungry locals who come for breakfast, brunch, and lunch.
The rolls are made with dough that is tender, slightly sweet, and butter-rich. They sell fast enough that the one you get will be shockingly fresh. The standard roll is swirled with cinnamon sugar and glazed with angelic vanilla butter whipped cream, but any number of custom toppings are available, including black pepper maple bacon glaze, coconut cream, bananas foster, strawberry cheesecake, and wildberry Graham cracker crumble. “Grandma Gloria’s Ooy Gooey Orange Marmalade Sticky Bun” is built on the same foundation, served warm enough that butter and marmalade melt together and into the dough. Knife and fork required!
Hungry for a breakfast sandwich? Made on rye, Italian bread, a bagel, or thick-sliced sourdough, they are big, beautiful meals. Fillings range from basic bacon & egg to the “Big Pig,” which contains bacon, sausage and ham, plus eggs and cheese. Or you can create your own from a long list of meats, cheeses, and toppings. One Sunday when I stopped in, the featured sandwich was the Palmetto: a pair of eggs, brightly sauced pulled pork, melty cheddar, and grilled onions. I got mine on slabs of golden-grilled sourdough and couldn’t have been happier. Grits lovers can breakfast on a “loaded bowl,” which also includes eggs with sausage or bacon. Pimento cheese grits are an every-weekend specialty.
Cinnamon rolls are the siren song of Devine Deli, but there also is a significant lunch menu that includes beguiling sandwiches and paninis, pork & beef chili, and a long roster of all-beef New York “pushcart dogs”: Coney Islands, Reuben dogs, Dixie dogs (chili & slaw), and stromboli dogs topped with pepperoni and provolone.
There is no mistaking this family-run restaurant for some corporate-created entity. It is a personality-plus operation in which the menu, food, and service combine to make guests feel they’ve found something pretty wonderful. The only possible problem is that it is too wonderful. On weekends especially, expect to wait in line to place an order.
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