Clemson, South Carolina, is widely known as a college town and home of Clemson University, but the charming upstate city is also home to a stellar dining scene. From casual dining options such as barbecue and deli sandwiches to upscale restaurants serving classic American fare, our guide to Clemson’s best restaurants will feature a restaurant perfect for any occasion.
Known throughout the city for its delicious barbecue and burgers, Sardi’s Den is a firm favorite with local diners, students from Clemson University and tourists. Must try dishes include its much raved about signature, secret recipe baby back ribs grilled to perfection and served with red BBQ sauce, and its range of handmade eight ounce ground chuck hamburgers. Sardi’s Den’s nightly specials include the popular All You Can Eat Crab Leg each Tuesday evening.
Sardi’s Den, 520 Old Greenville Highway #2, Clemson, SC, USA, +1 864 654 7427
Villa Toscana on Main
Located in the beautiful town of Central just a short drive from Clemson, Villa Toscana on Main is a charming, upscale Italian restaurant specializing in the rustic cuisine of Tuscany. Though the restaurant only opened in December 2014, with a grand opening overseen by Senator Lindsey Graham (who interestingly grew up in the property the restaurant now resides in), it has already earned itself a firm following and many repeat customers. Dishes like Mama Rosa’s meat sauce and papardelle pasta – based on an old family recipe passed down by owner Greg Demetri’s ancestors – and executive chef Ben Kaja’s signature Tuscan chicken with gemelli pasta and sautéed zucchini, squash and grape tomatoes proving very popular.
Villa Toscana on Main, 217 West Main Street, Central, SC, USA, +1 864 952 5027
Brioso Fresh Pasta
Offering casual dining based around tasty Italian fare, when owners Ray and Karan Stratford opened Brioso Fresh Pasta they introduced a new dining concept to Clemson. Sitting somewhere between self-serve and table service restaurants, at Brioso guests place their orders at a register and choose their own table while friendly servers take care of the rest of their meal. Here you’ll find an original take on fast-casual dining that doesn’t compromise on service. As its name would suggest, pasta is the main event at Brioso and guests can create their own unique dishes from its mix and match homemade fresh pasta and sauces or choose from signature entrees like lasagna or manicotti.
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