Grits & Groceries

Cajun/Creole | Eclectic
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Saylors Crossroads is as rural as a place can be, surrounded by acres of agriculture and a far piece from any town. At this bucolic spot in the heart of South Carolina’s Piedmont stands a restaurant that is true to its country location but also is a beacon of sophisticated cooking.

How did such a paradox come to be? Owners Heidi and Joe Trull had a baby. At the time, they were successful restaurateurs in the Creole culinary polestar, New Orleans – he was Emeril Lagasse’s pastry chef at Nola, she ran the esteemed Elizabeth’s – but they wanted to raise their child in the Carolinas where they grew up. Continue reading

Saylors Crossroads is as rural as a place can be, surrounded by acres of agriculture and a far piece from any town. At this bucolic spot in the heart of South Carolina’s Piedmont stands a restaurant that is true to its country location but also is a beacon of sophisticated cooking.

How did such a paradox come to be? Owners Heidi and Joe Trull had a baby. At the time, they were successful restaurateurs in the Creole culinary polestar, New Orleans – he was Emeril Lagasse’s pastry chef at Nola, she ran the esteemed Elizabeth’s – but they wanted to raise their child in the Carolinas where they grew up. So they found an old country store and made it into Grits & Groceries.

Here you find local produce used to make traditional dishes, but with a twist, the twist frequently being a South Louisiana accent. Examples: pork steak with Creole gravy; shrimp po boy; praline-crusted bacon. Among other menu highlights are a juice-heavy pimento cheeseburger draped with bacon, okra fritters with corn relish (a Wednesday special), and an appetizer of crisp-fried spheres of country ham and pimento cheese rolled in corn flakes and presented on a puddle of sweet-hot pepper jelly. If I have a problem with this place, it’s that there are too many intriguing things on the menu to taste them all, even in multiple visits.

Dessert is as good as it gets. Banana pudding is loaded with cookies and topped with real whipped cream. Crisp-crusted fried apple pie is served warm, inducing ecstasy when sided by a scoop of house-made cinnamon ice cream. Chocolate Coca-Cola cake is moist and powerfully chocolaty. F.R.O.G. cobbler (fig, raspberry, orange, ginger) is a sweet-tart triumph. And there’s butter-yellow sweet corn ice cream, coconut bread pudding, chocolate coconut cheesecake, peanut butter crunch bread pudding, and whiskey egg nog ice cream.

At brunch, served Friday and Saturday from 9am to 2pm, Carolina shrimp gravy and grits is a morning-meal dazzler, as are braised pork shanks topped with peach-pepper barbecue sauce, known here as Hog Wings. Lunch is served Tuesday and Wednesday. Dinner is served Thursday nights only.

Dishes to try
Grits & Groceries, Palmetto Burger
Palmetto Burger
Must-Try
The Palmetto burger is a craggy, hand-formed patty of local, grass-fed beef topped with house-made pimento cheese and thick slices of bacon. Presented on Texas toast, it is such a bountiful package that it is only barely pickupable.
Grits & Groceries, Tomato Pie
Tomato Pie
Must-Try
Hattie Mae's tomato pie is an old-time Dixie classic in which good tomatoes are the sweet part of savory pastry built with pie crust and rich with cheddar cheese.
Grits & Groceries, Ham Balls
Ham Balls
Must-Try
Country ham balls are spheres of pimento cheese speckled with ham, breaded with corn flake crumbs, and fried to a crisp. Their pepper jelly pallet, made with both jalapenos and habaneros, is an intoxicating equilibrium of sweet and hot.
Grits & Groceries, Chocolate Coca-Cola Cake
Chocolate Coca-Cola Cake
Must-Try
Chocolate Coca-Cola cake isn't quite effervescent, but it does have a radiant personality – moist, humming with chocolate, speckled with nuts.
Grits & Groceries, Banana Pudding
Banana Pudding
Must-Try
There are more cookies than usual in the banana pudding, making it almost cakelike. The custard is egg-rich; the whipped cream is fresh.
Grits & Groceries, Fried Apple Pie a la Mode
Fried Apple Pie a la Mode
Must-Try
Magnificent fried pie, crisp-crusted and loaded with buttery apple filling, accompanied by a scoop of cinnamon ice cream. The ice cream is made using milk and cream from Anderson County's Happy Cow Creamery.
Grits & Groceries, Praline Bacon
Praline Bacon
Must-Try
Praline bacon: a taste of New Orleans.
Grits & Groceries, Okra Fritter Salad
Okra Fritter Salad
Must-Try
Okra fritter salad is a Wednesday special. The fritters are reminiscent of hushpuppies, but packed with hunks of crunchy green okra. They are bedded atop Hurricane Creek lettuce from a farm up in Pelzer and accompanied by a spill of sweet corn relish.
Grits & Groceries, Hog Wings
Hog Wings
Must-Try
Hog Wings: a divine Carolina duet of crazy-tender braised pork shanks and pepper-spiked peach/corn barbecue sauce
Grits & Groceries, Carolina Shrimp Gravy and Grits
Carolina Shrimp Gravy and Grits
Must-Try
Torrents of spicy ham gravy make this a different kind of shrimp and grits.
Grits & Groceries, Fig Cake
Fig Cake
Must-Try
Fig cake -- coffee's best friend -- comes glazed with brown butter icing.
Grits & Groceries, Blueberry Fritters
Blueberry Fritters
Must-Try
Waitress Terri said the kitchen often makes apple fritters, but blueberries were so plentiful and so good this time of year they were fritter features. Below this trio, which reminded me of fancy biegnets, is a pool of sugary icing for dipping.
Grits & Groceries, German Apple Pancake
German Apple Pancake
Must-Try
Waffle batter is loaded with whisky-muddled apples, then skillet-cooked to become a German apple pancake.
Grits & Groceries, French Fries
French Fries
There are so many interesting and unusual items on the menu, but even ordinary French fries are, in fact, better than ordinary: crisp-edged, creamy-centered, heartily salted.
Grits & Groceries, Tea
Tea
Full-flavored sweet tea
Grits & Groceries, Sweet Corn Ice Cream
Sweet Corn Ice Cream
At first tasting like a curiously earthy vanilla, sweet corn ice cream blossoms on the tongue in great butter-sweet waves.
Grits & Groceries, Stuffed French Toast
Stuffed French Toast
French toast is stuffed with molten cream cheese and fistfuls of fresh, ripe strawberries.
Grits & Groceries, Goober Pie
Goober Pie
Individual-size goober pies are set out by the cash register. They're like pecan pie, but with forthright peanut flavor and a lode of chocolate down below.
Grits & Groceries, Buttermilk
Buttermilk
It's not photogenic, but a tall cup of cold buttermilk sure is refreshing.
Grits & Groceries, Pecan Pie
Pecan Pie
Pecan pie is here a la moded with buttermilk-lemon ice cream. A dreamy combo.
Grits & Groceries, Ambrosia Bread Pudding
Ambrosia Bread Pudding
Ambrosia bread pudding lolls in buttery syrup.
Grits & Groceries, Red Rooster Breakfast
Red Rooster Breakfast
Brilliant fried chicken, topped with gravy, stars in the Red Rooster breakfast.
Directions and Hours
CLOSED Today
SundayCLOSED
MondayCLOSED
Tuesday10 am - 2 pm
Wednesday10 am - 2 pm
Thursday5 pm - 9 pm
Friday9 am - 2 pm
Saturday9 am - 2 pm
Roadtrips
This restaurant is featured in the following eating tours.
4 stops | 2 hr 53 min total driving
8 stops | 17 hr 35 min total driving
Information and Policies
Seasons
Open Year Round
Meals Served
Lunch
Credit Cards Accepted
No
Alcohol Served
Yes
Outdoor Seating
Yes
Reservations Accepted
No
Delivery Available
No
Takeout Counter
Yes
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