Gwen Fowler



Where's the best hamburger in South Carolina?

Posted 8/17/2010 9:18:00 PM

Do you know who makes the best hamburger in South Carolina? Food Network Magazine says it’s the Nu-Way Lounge and Restaurant in Spartanburg.

The magazine praised the bar’s Redneck Cheeseburger, a thick beef patty topped with pimento cheese.

Nu-Way owner Becky Hammond-Myers said the pimento cheese is her mother’s recipe.

“She actually makes it. She won’t let us make it. I’ve tried to make it, but when mom makes it, it tastes better.”

Hammond-Myers, who bought the bar 5½ years ago, said the previous owners served a pimento burger, but her mother’s recipe makes the difference. It’s made with sharp cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses, pimentos and some spices.

“We serve the heck out of it.”

She had worked at the bar all through college and bought it soon after she graduated with a history degree.

“It works out well that I own the oldest bar in Spartanburg,” she said.

The restaurant and bar, on East Kennedy Street, “hasn’t changed the way it’s looked in 40 or 50 years, she said. It opened in 1938 as Lloyd’s Nu-Way Barbecue and was enlarged in the 1960s.

But it’s still very small, she said, with about 13 tables and another 15 seats at an L-shaped bar. It has an open kitchen and a patio in the back. It’s a popular spot for live music.

In addition to the Redneck Cheeseburger, Nu-Way serves salads, deli sandwiches, homemade chicken salad and burgers, including a veggie burger.

Hammond-Myers, 33, does quite a bit of the cooking herself every day at lunch. She married in June, and her husband is in boot camp.

She’s not quite sure how the Food Network’s recognition came about, but the pimento cheeseburger also was named one of the top three upstate burgers by Sandlapper magazine.