The Best Pancakes and Crepes in the Upcountry

Whether it’s time for brunch or a late-night craving, people ask us where the best pancakes and crepes can be found all over the Upcountry. We’ve hunted down and hand-picked some of the best, and eaten our way through some delicious carb-laden creations in the Upcountry!

For our first option with the most variety of not only locations around the Upcountry but also pancake varieties, check out Eggs Up Grill! This restaurant, which started in 1997 in Pawleys Island, SC, has become synonymous with its colorful restaurants, comfy booths, and fantastic service! There are currently 69 franchises across the east coast, spanning from Alabama to Florida, and Tennessee to Virginia. While most of them are in Carolinas, 12 are in the Upcountry, from Boiling Springs all the way to Clemson. Some of their unique pancakes include the “Red, white, and bacon” pancakes – two fluffy buttermilk pancakes with crispy bacon pieces cooked into the batter, topped with fresh strawberries, powdered sugar, and garnished with even more bacon. Their caramel apple pancakes include two buttermilk pancakes with apple pie crumble, griddled for a crispy crunch, topped with caramelized fire-roasted Fuji apples, caramel sauce, and powdered sugar. They’ve also recently added gluten-free pancakes to their menu, sprinkled with powdered sugar, and you could also add chocolate chips, blueberries, or bananas to them as well. These are super fun restaurants to take your family to as there is always something for everyone here, whether you like savory, sweet or something in between.

Cinnamon roll pancakes from Dray Bar & Grill in Spartanburg, SC, taken by Allspice Photography, LLC

For the most unique pancake, we headed to Dray Bar and Grill in Spartanburg, which according to their website, is “chef-run and dog owned”. Their claim to fame on their brunch menu is their cinnamon swirl pancakes, swirled with cinnamon, topped with royal icing, homemade whipped cream, and their famous home-fried potatoes, and seasonal fruit. These were absolutely fantastic and looked exactly like if you took a cinnamon roll and cooked it, Smashburger style onto the griddle, and turned it into a pancake. The cinnamon and sugar on the outside of the pancake had begun to caramelize and make this sugar skirt, and as you were eating it, you almost wanted to just peel the pancake apart, like peeling apart a cinnamon roll. It was so good, it almost didn’t need syrup, but of course, they provided you some anyway to drizzle over the top. The royal icing was perfect, it was just sweet enough, and didn’t overpower or take away from the pancakes. I would highly recommend checking them out for brunch as it’s a fantastic location, and they have a bunch of other great brunch items on the menu as well to try while you’re there.

For those big classic scratch-made pancakes, check out The Village Bakery and Cafe in downtown Pendleton. They are known for their brunch and this double stack of buttermilk pancakes, filled with either blueberries or chocolate chips of your choosing, is dusted in powdered sugar and syrup. You can also make it a meal for an extra $2 with bacon, ham, or sausage, and one egg cooked to order. People love coming here for the Village omelets and Village benedicts as well, and they’re known for their baked goods, daily quiches, and biscuits and gravy too.

The Dutch Plate in Campobello, SC, taken by Allspice Photography, LLC

However, for that old-fashioned diner-style pancake, like mom used to make, take a drive to Campobello, to the Dutch Plate Family Restaurant. This place was originally run for about 30 years by a lady that came from Pennsylvania which is where the Dutch name came from. It was taken over by owner Patrick Farrell about seven years ago. They serve breakfast all day, and we got two hot cakes served with powdered sugar, butter, and syrup. The pancakes themselves were delicious and you could even taste the sugar granules in the pancake as if they used a coarser sugar to make them, which gave them more texture. Their specialty of the house is a pancake roll-up, which includes scrambled eggs, cheese, and breakfast meat of your choosing rolled into a hot cake topped with powdered sugar. The pancake roll-up was such a fantastic mix of savory and sweet. I thought the powdered sugar was going to be a little too much and put it over the top, but it was awesome. Patrick says his niece, who is in her 20s, always gets this every time she comes to the restaurant. They also serve other Mid-Atlantic breakfast staples, like scrapple, baloney, Dutch biscuits, and chicken filet biscuits.

Banana granola almond crunch pancakes from First Watch in Simpsonville, SC, taken by Allspice Photography, LLC

For those looking for something healthier when it comes to pancakes, First Watch is where you need to be. They make huge pancakes that are multigrain and come topped with butter and syrup (the classic way), blueberries, chocolate chips, banana granola almond crunch, or carrot cake & pecan topping. The banana granola almond crunch is my favorite and is the one pictured here. Another thing that’s great about First Watch is their menu is fantastic about noting what allergens are in their menu items, including peanuts/tree nuts, gluten, soy, milk, and eggs. This is a great spot to take people to for those looking for lighter options, as well as some hardier and healthier options. They have their main location in Simpsonville, SC, and they recently opened a second location in the Upcountry in Greenville’s Magnolia Shopping Plaza off of Woodruff Road. 

Crepe from Mon Amie Morning Cafe in Spartanburg, SC, taken by Allspice Photography, LLC

Making a list of the best crepes in the upstate was a hard job but somebody’s gotta do it. We had a crepe time eating all of these. Our first stop is the best place to get the most variety of Crepes, for all different times of the day, was Mon Amie Morning Cafe in Spartanburg, SC. They have breakfast crepes,  lunch crepes, and dessert crepes, they even have pancakes! Wednesday through Sunday they’re open from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., and the last seating for dine-in is at 2:30 p.m. We tried two different crepes, their New Orleans breakfast crepe, which included two eggs, crumbled bacon, green peppers, onions, and tomatoes with French Quarter sauce, essentially their homemade take on Zaxby’s sauce. One of their most popular lunch crepes, which was called the Deacon crepe, included onions, tomatoes, spinach, and Monterey Jack cheese, with a sun-dried tomato basil pesto sauce inside. We also added smoked salmon inside the crepe for an upcharge. Both of our crepes were served with house chow-chow, avocado, and lettuce on the side. The best part about dining here was that we got to sit at the bar, which was essentially dinner and a show, as we got to watch the two chefs make and fill all of the crepes on the big cast iron grills in the center of the restaurant. It is 100% worth the wait as the food is fantastic. 

For farm-to-table crepes with amazing drinks to boot, don’t miss Tandem Creperie in Travelers Rest. They have gluten-free crepes, vegetarian crepes, heartier options like the Lumberjack crepe, and a full coffee and tea menu to keep you toasty! Freshly squeezed juices, kombuchas, and handcrafted sodas are available to complement their savory crepe options as well. They also sell waffles and granola, and are right off the Swamp Rabbit Trail, so it’s a great stop for a snack, or to start or end your biking journey.

Last but certainly not least for our crepe section. I’ve included what I consider the “true to France” crepe experience – Authentique French Creperie In Simpsonville, SC. Little known fact, when I got to travel for work in France in 2019, one of my favorite things was stopping at the street vendors that would sell crepes and going out to brunch with my colleagues. I would try to experience as many true French cuisines and cultural dining experiences as possible while I was there. We didn’t get to photograph or experience this restaurant for this blog, but we have heard from many folks that have been here before, that both the sweet and the savory crepes are very similar and traditional to the methods in France. Authentic French Creperie uses buckwheat flour in their savory crepes (they call them galettes) which means they are gluten-free. They even have the crepe on the menu that I had in France, which they call “La Miel et Noix” (which translates to “honey with nuts”). This is filled with honey, ground walnuts, and Chantilly cream (I didn’t have Chantilly cream on mine in France but that’s okay). They have unique toppings and flavors that include salted caramel butter, grated walnuts and chocolate sauce, and chestnut vanilla puree imported from France. Some of their savory combinations include duck prosciutto, brie cheese, and mushrooms sauteed with garlic and herbs; Goat cheese, balsamic vinaigrette, and green salad; Roast beef, swiss cheese, fresh spinach, and tomatoes, to name a few. This is definitely one to check out if you want to try a little taste of Europe without leaving home. 

We hope you pull up this blog the next time you’re craving something with a dab of butter and some maple syrup, or even something a little more savory like a crepe!

By Sarah A. (Moore) Gross, Pimento & Prose Media

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