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Help Yourself to South Carolina’s Freshest, Tastiest Burgers

Libby Wiersema Libby Wiersema
Libby Wiersema lived in California and Alabama before settling in South Carolina 35 years ago, where she's covered the state's best culinary offerings and tells the stories behind the food.
More from "Libby Wiersema"
hamburger and french fries on a plate
Lucky for you, there's no shortage of places to get a good burger in South Carolina.

While there has always been disagreement about who first sandwiched a ground beef patty between sliced bread, most everyone agrees it was a delicious and brilliant idea. The evolution of the hamburger is also the evolution of the American fast-food industry, which popularized the sandwich and permanently ingrained it in our culinary landscape.

Though we’re far more famous for shrimp and grits, make no mistake about it, South Carolinians love a good burger as much as any red-blooded American. Ready to indulge your hamburger hankering? Here are 20 of the state’s best burger destinations, each featuring fresh beef and fixings:

1720 Burger Bar, Florence
Best burger bet: The Pittsburgher, with provolone, grilled peppers and onions, house-cut fries and shaved rib-eye on sourdough

BGR the Burger Joint, Clemson
Best burger bet: The Clemson, with house-made pimento cheese, bacon, red onion and mojo sauce

Bad Daddy’s Burgers, Greenville (two locations)
Best burger bet: Classic Southern Burger, with American cheese, chili, relish, mustard and house slaw

Burgers and Barley, Rock Hill
Best burger bet: The Daredevil, with roasted poblano cream sauce, jalapeño frites, chipotle mayo, lettuce, tomato and red onion on a brioche bun

Grill Marks, Columbia and Greenville
Best burger bet: Low Country, with pimento cheese, fried green tomato, coleslaw and lettuce

Henry’s Restaurant and Bar, Columbia
Best burger bet: Henry’s Signature Burger, with Dijon mustard-infused white cheddar, sauteed mushrooms and onion

Husk, Charleston
Best burger bet: There’s only one burger at Husk, an artisan creation with two patties – a blend of chuck and bacon – two slices of American cheese, steamed white onion, house-made bread and butter pickles and a special sauce on a toasty buttermilk and sesame seed bun

Ike’s Korner Grill, Spartanburg
Best burger bet: Chili-Cheese Burger, with mustard, house-made chili and onions

Joe’s Grill, Darlington
Best burger bet: House Burger, with mayo, lettuce, tomato, pickle and onion

Joey Doggs and Burgers, Surfside Beach
Best burger bet: Double Bacon Cheeseburger, with two patties, crispy bacon and cheese

Little Jack’s Tavern, Charleston
Best burger bet: Double Tavern Burger, with two 4-ounce half-chuck, half-brisket patties, sunchoke relish, American cheese and special sauce on a house-made, sesame seed bun

Moe’s Crosstown, Charleston
Best burger bet: BLT Burger, with fried tomato, bacon, fresh mozzarella, pesto mayo and mixed greens

Northgate Soda Shop, Greenville
Best burger bet: Chris Evan’s Burger, with bacon, cheese and fried egg

Northwest Grill, Travelers Rest
Best burger bet: House Burger, with a ½-pound patty and your favorite accompaniments

NuWay Restaurant & Lounge, Spartanburg
Best burger bet: Redneck Burger, with lettuce, tomato, onion, chili, mustard, mayo, ketchup and pimento cheese

Pawleys Front Porch, Columbia
Best burger bet: The Sullivan’s, with grilled pineapple, guacamole, citrus jalapeño mayonnaise, lettuce, tomato, red onion and pepper jack cheese

Pawleys Island Tavern, Pawleys Island
Best burger bet: Psychoburger, with pimento cheese, chili, sauteed onions, bacon, jalapeños, coleslaw, over-easy egg and hot sauce

Poe’s Tavern, Sullivan’s Island
Best burger bet: Pit & Pendulum, with applewood-smoked bacon and cheddar cheese

River City Café, Grand Strand (seven locations)
Best burger bet: Banana Pepper Burger, with fried banana peppers, lettuce, tomato and chipotle mayo

Rockaway Athletic Club, Columbia
Best burger bet: Pimento Cheese Burger, with renowned, house-made pimento cheese


Libby Wiersema
Libby Wiersema lived in California and Alabama before settling in South Carolina 35 years ago, where she's covered the state's best culinary offerings and tells the stories behind the food.