You don’t often find me writing reviews of chain restaurants because most people have exposure to places they can find everywhere. When we stepped into Tupelo Honey Cafe, we had no idea they had about a dozen locations around the southeast. And let me tell you, this place is anything other than ordinary mass-produced food! Their focus on locally sourced ingredients with beautiful southern dishes offer a twist on many classics.
This restaurant offers a ton of seating, indoor and out, with a full bar and ample large tables for groups. The atmosphere feels more like a small southern kitchen though with comfortable chairs, soft lighting and a warm color palette. There is a large local beer selection and some great craft cocktail choices. After settling on a Westbrook IPA, brewed in South Carolina, we ordered the SC Pecan-Encrusted Goat Cheese. Warm and creamy as you spread it on toasted bread, the cheese is complimented by a mixture of figs, grilled apples and pimentos. We loved every bite!
Warm buttermilk biscuits are brought to your table before dinner, but won’t last long after they’re smothered with blueberry compote and buttery honey. The small plates and dinner choices are vast and varied. My wife settled on Cackalackie Pulled Pork with a tangy vinegar-y mustard BBQ sauce. Served with fried onion straws and house pickles, she loved the creamy rich baked mac-n-cheese and roasted brussels sprouts. There wasn’t a bite on that plate that either of us didn’t love. I chose the Carolina Mountain Trout seared with brown butter – a huge filet with great texture and crispy edges. My basil sautéed green beans and eggy Appalachian corn souffle were outstanding and Sunday-supper-feeling.
The only regret here is that we didn’t get to try more! The menu definitely will have us coming back again. Banana Pudding served with fresh whipped cream and crumbled vanilla wafers was an awesome treat we brought home to enjoy later in the evening. I highly recommend visiting their website and checking out where you might find them on your next trip around the southeast. You can find them here at tupelohoneycafe.com. Mostly, just find them and dig into a taste of the south!