Best Columbia SC Restaurants: Your Ultimate Guide to Top Dining Spots

Columbia, South Carolina, is a destination that offers a rich culinary scene with a wide variety of restaurants to suit every taste. The city’s food culture ranges from comforting Southern classics to exciting global flavors, showcasing the diverse influences and traditions that make up the local dining landscape. Columbia has a restaurant to satiate your cravings, whether you’re in the mood for a leisurely brunch, a satisfying lunch, an unforgettable dinner, or a delicious dessert.

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No matter what type of cuisine you’re in the mood for, Columbia’s top-rated restaurants are sure to impress. Seafood lovers will be delighted with fresh coastal dishes, while those seeking a unique dining experience can explore some of the city’s fine dining establishments and downtown eateries. Looking for outdoor seating to enjoy the warm Southern weather or wondering about making reservations? Many dining spots in Columbia cater to these preferences, and accommodations are often available near your chosen restaurant.

Looking for an after-dinner pick-me-up? Shoot over to my list of the best Coffee in Columbia for a post-meal caffeine boost.

What’s the best restaurant in Columbia, SC?

There are tons of great restaurants in Columbia. Some highly-rated options in the city include The Devine Cinnamon Roll Deli, Blue Marlin, Real Mexico Restaurant Y Tienda, The War Mouth, Halls Chophouse, and Motor Supply Co. Bistro, each offering a unique and delightful dining experience.

Key Takeaways

  • Columbia’s culinary scene is diverse, offering a range of dining options from Southern fare to global flavors.
  • Top-rated restaurants include seafood spots, fine dining establishments, and downtown eateries.
  • Many Columbia restaurants offer outdoor seating and can accommodate reservations for diners.

If you’re visiting Columbia, it’s great that youu’re planning your meals, but have you found a place to stay yet? I’ve got you covered. Check out my guide to Columbia’s best hotels so you’ll have a place to sleep off all your post meal itis.

Exploring Columbia, SC’s Culinary Delights

Are you ready to embark on a gastronomic journey through the heart of Columbia, South Carolina?

You’re in for a treat as we dive into the city’s vibrant culinary scene, a delightful fusion of classic Southern flavors and international cuisine.

Let’s explore some of the best restaurants and local food experiences that make Columbia a food lover’s paradise.

Southern Comfort Meets Exotic Flavors

In Columbia, you’ll find a captivating blend of classic Southern cooking and more exotic dishes, creating an enticing dining atmosphere.

Imagine savoring dishes crafted with ingredients like oxtail and venison, evoking the rustic charm of a Southern hunting trip. You can live this experience at The War Mouth, a local favorite where the flavors are as hearty as they come.

International Flavors at Your Fingertips

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Craving international flavors? Columbia has you covered. Step into 2 Gingers for a culinary adventure through India.

Delight your taste buds with dishes like Chicken Tikka Masala, Tandoori Kebabs, Butter Lamb, Paneer, and aromatic curries. Don’t forget to pair these delectable creations with naan, samosas, and fragrant basmati rice for a truly memorable dining experience.

Sushi and Japanese Delights

For lovers of sushi, hibachi, and all things Japanese, Columbia offers a delightful selection. Inakaya and Inakaya Watanabe are the go-to spots for bento boxes, flavorful sushi rolls, and warm sake.

The authentic ambiance and mouthwatering dishes will transport you to the heart of Japan.

For a full run down of the best Asian restaurants in Columbia, check out my article!

Local Sourcing at Its Best

Local ingredients play a vital role in shaping Columbia’s culinary landscape. City Roots, a local farm, provides fresh produce, with a special focus on microgreens, which grace the plates of many Columbia restaurants.

What’s more, City Roots collaborates with Farm to Table Event Co. to host enchanting farm events, highlighting the beautiful synergy between local farms, talented chefs, and eager diners.

Columbia’s culinary scene is dynamic, vibrant, and brimming with delicious discoveries for both locals and visitors.

Whether you’re yearning for the comforting embrace of Southern cuisine or the exotic allure of international delicacies, Columbia’s diverse range of restaurants has something to satisfy every palate.

Columbia’s Breakfast and Brunch Treasures

In this vibrant city, you’ll find a delightful array of options to satisfy your cravings. From irresistible pancakes and waffles to perfectly brewed coffee, we’ve unearthed the top-rated spots that promise a delicious start to your day.

Related Article! Best Coffee Shops In Hilton Head

The Devine Cinnamon Roll Deli: A Sweet Beginning

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Your morning adventure begins at The Devine Cinnamon Roll Deli, a true gem in Columbia’s breakfast scene.

Prepare to be enchanted by their mouthwatering cinnamon rolls, a divine creation that’s sure to please your taste buds. Here, you’ll savor a delightful American Cafe experience that’s nothing short of extraordinary.

They have one of the best breakfasts in Columbia!

DI Prato’s: An American Cafe Extravaganza

DI Prato’s is another renowned American Cafe in Columbia, celebrated for its exceptional brunch menus.

Whether you’re in the mood for classic breakfast staples or inventive brunch creations, this spot has you covered. It’s a favorite among locals and visitors alike, promising a memorable dining experience.

Low Country Delights at Blue Marlin

If you’re a fan of Low Country cuisine, you’re in for a treat at Blue Marlin. This establishment serves up delectable seafood dishes that have earned them a place in the hearts of many.

Their reputation as a go-to spot for seafood enthusiasts is well-deserved, so be sure to indulge in the flavors of the coast when you visit.

Elegance Meets Gourmet at Hall’s Chophouse

For those seeking a more refined brunch experience, Hall’s Chophouse is the perfect choice.

This upscale establishment offers gourmet Lowcountry specialties in an elegant setting, making it ideal for special occasions or simply treating yourself to a luxurious morning meal.

Comfort and Charm: Flying Biscuit Cafe and Cafe Strudel

Columbia also boasts charming eateries like Flying Biscuit Cafe and Cafe Strudel, known for their comforting fare and friendly atmospheres.

These cozy spots are where you can savor familiar dishes in a welcoming setting, making you feel right at home.

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To get a better understanding of what these top breakfast and brunch spots have to offer, here’s a handy table:

The Devine Cinnamon Roll DeliCinnamon Rolls, American CafeCozy & Casual
DI Prato’sAmerican Cafe, Brunch MenuComfortable & Relaxed
Blue MarlinLow Country, SeafoodEnergetic & Stylish
Hall’s ChophouseFine Dining, Lowcountry SpecialtiesElegant & Sophisticated
Flying Biscuit CafeSouthern Comfort FoodWelcoming & Warm
Cafe StrudelCafé classics and bakeryHomey & Charming

Columbia’s breakfast and brunch scene is a treasure trove of culinary delights. Whether you’re craving the warmth of a cinnamon roll, the flavors of the coast, or a gourmet experience to remember, this city has it all.

So, whether you’re a local or a visitor, it’s time to start your day the Columbia way – with a hearty breakfast or brunch that’ll leave you smiling from ear to ear.

Related Article! Best places for a kids birthday party in Columbia.

Lunch-Time Must Visits in Columbia

Columbia, SC, offers a variety of fantastic lunch spots, each with its unique spin on delicious dishes and local flavors. We’ve gathered a few noteworthy options to satisfy your midday cravings.

The Devine Cinnamon Roll Deli: Sweet and Savory Creations

Begin your lunchtime adventure at The Devine Cinnamon Roll Deli, where sweet and savory collide in the most delightful way.

While they’re renowned for their out-of-this-world cinnamon rolls, don’t miss out on their equally enticing lunch menu. Fresh ingredients come together to create sandwiches and salads with delightful combinations that will leave your taste buds singing.

smallSUGAR: Cozy Oasis of Flavor

smallSUGAR is a cozy oasis for lunchtime indulgence. Their menu features delicious tartines, bowls, and sandwiches, all crafted with an artisanal touch.

But that’s not all – they also serve exquisite pastries and expertly brewed espresso drinks. As an added bonus, their covered outdoor patio provides the perfect setting for a leisurely lunchtime break.

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Blue Marlin: Low Country Charm

For a taste of the South, head to Blue Marlin, where mouthwatering Low Country dishes take center stage.

This charming eatery combines excellent service with delicious dishes, making it a sought-after lunchtime destination. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, this spot promises a warm and inviting dining experience.

Real Mexico Restaurant Y Tienda: Authentic Mexican Delights

If you’re yearning for authentic Mexican cuisine, look no further than Real Mexico Restaurant Y Tienda.

Their menu is a celebration of Mexican flavors, guaranteed to satisfy your taste buds. From traditional favorites to unique regional specialties, you’ll find a diverse range of options to savor.

Spotted Salamander’s Pimiento Cheese Delight

One dish that deserves a special mention is the pimiento cheese, a culinary gem found at Spotted Salamander.

This charming eatery offers a selection of unique and delicious meals, including their famous salads and tacos. The pimiento cheese, with its rich and creamy goodness, is a must-try delicacy that exemplifies their commitment to flavor and quality.

To sum up our recommendations, here’s a table that breaks down these top lunch restaurants in Columbia, SC:

RestaurantCuisineMust-Try Dish
The Devine Cinnamon Roll DeliAmerican CafeCinnamon rolls
Blue MarlinLow CountrySouthern dishes
Real Mexico Restaurant Y TiendaMexicanTacos
Spotted SalamanderEclecticPimiento cheese

These top lunch spots in Columbia, SC, offer a mix of cuisines, flavors, and ambiance. Make sure to check them out and immerse yourself in the city’s ever-growing culinary scene.

Best Dinner Destinations in Columbia

As the sun sets over Columbia, SC, the city comes alive with a diverse array of dinner options that cater to every palate.

Whether you’re a seafood lover, a fan of classic Southern cuisine, or have a craving for international flavors, Columbia has you covered. Join us as we explore some of the city’s standout dinner spots.

Real Mexico Restaurant Y Tienda: A Seafood Haven

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If seafood is your calling, then Real Mexico Restaurant Y Tienda is a local favorite that should be at the top of your list.

This Latin-inspired restaurant offers an array of seafood delights, including the classic shrimp and grits.

Known for its authentic Mexican cuisine and cozy atmosphere, it’s a go-to spot for both locals and visitors seeking a taste of the ocean’s bounty.

The Devine Cinnamon Roll Deli: Southern Comfort with Shrimp and Grits

For those yearning for classic Southern dishes, look no further than The Devine Cinnamon Roll Deli.

Nestled in the heart of Columbia, this beloved deli is celebrated for its breakfast and brunch offerings, but their shrimp and grits are a dinner option not to be missed. It’s a delightful blend of comfort and flavor that will leave you satisfied.

DI Prato’s: Italian-Inspired Indulgence

Columbia boasts a wealth of Italian-inspired cuisine, and DI Prato’s is a cozy American cafe that showcases the best of it.

Dive into pasta favorites like chicken parmesan and carbonara, prepared with love and attention to detail. It’s a taste of Italy right in the heart of South Carolina.

Cola’s Restaurant: Cajun-Style Delights

Columbia’s culinary scene wouldn’t be complete without a nod to Cajun cuisine, and Cola’s Restaurant delivers just that.

Here, you can savor delicious mussels and other seafood delicacies that come with a touch of Southern flair.

Their American menu offers a delightful twist on Cajun-style dishes, making it a dining experience to remember.

Cowboy Brazilian Steakhouse: A Meat Lover’s Paradise

Calling all meat enthusiasts! Cowboy Brazilian Steakhouse is your ultimate destination. Indulge in succulent filet mignon and an array of delightful cuts in an elegant setting.

This unique steakhouse offers an elevated buffet with the finest selection of meats, ensuring a dining experience like no other.

The War Mouth: Innovative Flavors and Crispy Fried Chicken

Looking for a dining experience with a twist? Head to The War Mouth, one of Columbia’s most unique restaurants.

Their menu boasts innovative dishes that celebrate regional cuisine, including a variety of game meat options. And don’t forget to savor their perfectly crispy fried chicken, a true crowd-pleaser.

Related article! Columbia’s Best Chicken Wings!

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Spotted Salamander: Lighter Fare and Vegetarian Delights

For those seeking lighter fare and vegetarian choices, Spotted Salamander is the answer. This charming eatery serves up palate-pleasing vegetarian dishes and decadent crepes, ensuring there’s something for everyone. You won’t leave hungry or disappointed.

Columbia’s dinner scene is a tapestry of flavors and experiences, and whether you’re a local exploring your city or a visitor in search of memorable dining, there’s a spot that’s perfect for you.

From seafood feasts to Italian indulgence, Cajun flair, and beyond, the city’s diverse restaurants promise a culinary adventure you won’t soon forget.

Signature Desserts Around Columbia

Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth in Columbia, SC

As we conclude our culinary journey through Columbia, SC, it’s time to explore the delightful world of desserts.

Just like the city’s diverse food scene, Columbia’s dessert offerings are equally tantalizing. Let’s indulge in some signature sweets from reputable establishments that will leave your taste buds singing.

Kaminsky’s: Tiramisu Bliss

When it comes to desserts, Kaminsky’s is a name that dessert aficionados in Columbia hold dear. This American dessert bar is renowned for its incredible dessert selection, but one dessert that stands out is their mouth-watering tiramisu.

This classic Italian creation boasts layers of espresso-soaked ladyfingers and sweet mascarpone cream, elegantly dusted with cocoa powder. The result is a perfect balance of flavors that will leave you craving for more.

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Sweet Cream Co.: House-Made Ice Cream Delight

For those seeking a cool and creamy treat, Sweet Cream Co. is the place to be. Nestled on Main Street, this charming spot serves up house-made ice cream flavors that are pure indulgence.

Served in crispy waffle cones, each scoop is a taste of heaven. As you enjoy your dessert, take a leisurely stroll through the vibrant streets of Columbia to enhance your experience.

This is my top pick for the best ice cream shops in Columbia, by the way. It was tough researching but hey, I did it for you!

Bananas Foster: A Taste of New Orleans

For a taste of New Orleans right here in South Carolina, indulge in Bananas Foster. This scrumptious dessert is a classic from The Big Easy, featuring bananas flambéed in a rich sauce made with brown sugar, butter, cinnamon, rum, and served over velvety vanilla ice cream.

You can savor this warm and indulgent delight at Duck Donuts, a dessert haven that offers a tempting array of donut flavors, all of which can be customized to satisfy your sweet tooth.

In summary, here is a table of the signature desserts we have mentioned:

Dessert BarDessertDescription
Kaminsky’s TiramisuClassic Italian dessert with layers of espresso-soaked ladyfingers and sweet mascarpone cream, dusted with cocoa powder.
Sweet Cream Co.House-made Ice CreamSignature ice cream flavors served in crispy waffle cones.
Duck DonutsBananas FosterBananas flambéed in a rich sauce with brown sugar, butter, cinnamon, rum, and served over vanilla ice cream.

Columbia’s dessert scene is the perfect ending to your culinary adventure in this vibrant city.

Whether you’re a fan of classic Italian tiramisu, house-made ice cream, the flavors of New Orleans, or delectable donuts, there’s a dessert to suit every craving.

So, as you wrap up your day of exploration, be sure to save room for these irresistible sweet treats that Columbia has to offer. Your taste buds will thank you!

Top-Rated Restaurants In Columbia

Motor Supply Company Bistro: Farm-to-Table Excellence

At Motor Supply Company Bistro, culinary innovation meets the farm-to-table ethos. This beloved establishment boasts a rotating menu that showcases the freshest local ingredients.

Every visit promises a delightful experience, thanks to their commitment to quality and contemporary dining. If you seek a high-quality culinary adventure, Motor Supply is your destination.

They also host Columbia’s second best brunch on the weekends.

Terra: Farm-to-Table Elegance

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Terra is another gem in Columbia, renowned for its farm-to-table creations crafted by Chef Mike Davis.

Their dedicated staff is always ready to guide you through a menu that emphasizes seasonal specialties and local ingredients.

Prepare to be enchanted by their expertly-crafted dishes that celebrate the flavors of the region.

Mr. Friendly’s New Southern Cafe: Southern Comfort Food

For a taste of Southern hospitality and cuisine, Mr. Friendly’s New Southern Cafe is the place to be.

With its cozy ambiance and comforting dishes, this restaurant offers a laid-back yet delectable dining experience. It’s the perfect spot to savor the warmth of Southern flavors.

Blue Marlin: Seafood Paradise

Seafood enthusiasts, rejoice! Blue Marlin is your haven for a seafood extravaganza. Nestled in the historic Vista district, this restaurant offers a menu that’s a testament to the ocean’s bounty.

Don’t miss their renowned shrimp and grits, served in a charming setting that adds a touch of magic to your dining experience.

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Cantina 76: Vibrant Mexican-Inspired Flavors

Looking for the best tacos in Columbia? Look no further than Cantina 76. Their menu boasts a vibrant array of tacos, enchiladas, and salads that will transport your taste buds south of the border. If you’re in the mood for tacos done right, this trendy spot won’t disappoint.

Black Rooster: French-Inspired Elegance

Black Rooster is a French-inspired eatery that offers more than just exceptional cuisine; it sets the stage for a truly memorable dining experience. Their menu, featuring appetizers, entrées, and desserts, is sure to impress, making it an ideal spot for special occasions.

Il Focolare: Cozy Italian Comfort

Il Focolare, a cozy Italian restaurant, invites you to savor traditional dishes and wood-fired pizzas. Whether you’re seeking a romantic date night or a comforting family meal, the warm atmosphere and mouth-watering menu at Il Focolare will make your visit truly special.

Hendrix Restaurant: Contemporary Elegance

Hendrix Restaurant offers a contemporary and diverse menu in an elegant setting. Innovative dishes and exceptional cocktails make it an excellent choice for a night out with friends or a memorable special occasion.

No matter your preferences or the occasion, you’re guaranteed to find a delightful dining experience in the heart of Columbia. So, gather your appetite and prepare for a culinary adventure you won’t soon forget.

Spotlight On Seafood Restaurants in Columbia

Columbia’s Seafood Sensations

For seafood enthusiasts in Columbia, SC, the culinary scene is a treasure trove of delightful options. From mouthwatering shrimp creations to inventive oyster offerings, these seafood destinations are not to be missed. Let’s dive into the world of Columbia’s finest seafood establishments.

Blue Marlin: A Low Country Gem

When it comes to seafood, Blue Marlin reigns supreme in Columbia. This restaurant offers an impressive menu that brings the essence of Low Country cuisine to the heart of the city, with a delightful dash of Creole and Cajun influence.

Among its standout dishes is the legendary she-crab soup, a culinary masterpiece that has garnered a stellar reputation among both locals and visitors. Your taste buds are in for a treat at Blue Marlin.

Pearlz Oyster Bar: A Seafood Extravaganza

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For those who revel in the world of oysters, Pearlz Oyster Bar is a must-visit. This renowned establishment boasts a wide variety of oysters and exudes a lively atmosphere that adds to the dining experience.

Beyond their oyster selection, Pearlz offers a diverse range of seafood dishes that are confidently touted as the best in town. Prepare to be enchanted by the flavors of the sea.

Oyster Bar Columbia: Casual Coastal Vibes

If you prefer a more laid-back seafood experience, Oyster Bar Columbia is your destination. Here, you’ll find a relaxed ambiance and a menu brimming with satisfying seafood dishes.

With a broad array of oysters and other seafood favorites, this spot has all the ingredients for a memorable dining experience. And of course, a well-curated drink selection perfectly complements the fabulous food.

Wild Crab: A Bold Seafood Adventure

For those eager to explore the exotic side of seafood in Columbia, Wild Crab awaits. This restaurant infuses bold flavors into its seafood creations, crafting dishes that tantalize the taste buds.

It’s a unique twist on seafood, offering a dining experience that’s both adventurous and delicious.

To sum it up, here are our top seafood restaurant picks in Columbia SC:

Blue MarlinShe-crab soup, Low Country cuisine
Pearlz Oyster BarVariety of oysters, lively atmosphere
Oyster Bar ColumbiaCasual dining, great drink selection
Wild CrabUnique, bold flavored seafood dishes

So if you find yourself in Columbia, SC and crave some high-quality seafood, be sure to visit these fine establishments for a fantastic dining experience.

Experience Local Drinks in Columbia

In Columbia, South Carolina, the dining experience isn’t complete without indulging in the vibrant local drinks scene.

From exquisite cocktails to rich bourbons, craft beer to unexpected sake pairings, this city offers a world of flavors in its beverages. Join us on a journey through some must-try options for an unforgettable drinking experience.

Cocktail Adventures at Smoked

Columbia’s cocktail culture is thriving, and Smoked is at the forefront of this craft. They’ve elevated the art of mixology, curating a menu of signature and classic drinks that perfectly complement the flavors of their renowned smoked meats.

Here, expertly concocted cocktails brim with fresh ingredients, promising a sensory delight that you won’t want to miss.

Bourbon Bliss in the South

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South Carolina has a rich history with bourbon, and Columbia proudly hosts bourbon-forward bars that showcase the best of local and national distilleries.

Savor the bold flavors of bourbon while basking in the impeccable southern hospitality that defines the city. It’s an experience that pays homage to tradition and craftsmanship.

Craft Beer Oasis at River Rat Brewery

Columbia’s craft beer scene is a bubbling oasis, and River Rat Brewery stands as a testament to this thriving culture.

Whether you prefer hoppy IPAs or velvety stouts, they have a brew that will delight your palate. Seasonal offerings ensure you’ll always have something new to savor, making it a destination for beer enthusiasts.

It’s one of the best breweries in Columbia, and that’s saying something because there are a lot!

Sake Sensations: Unexpected Pairings

While not typically associated with the region, sake has found its place in Columbia’s beverage program.

Many local restaurants have embraced this aromatic and balanced libation, pairing it flawlessly with sushi and other Asian dishes. Explore the world of sake and discover how it elevates your dining experience to new heights.

Innovative Mixology: Signature Cocktails

In the lively streets of Columbia, unique signature cocktails abound. Innovative mixologists at various establishments are eager to showcase their skills, combining exciting flavors to challenge your taste buds.

Prepare to embark on a sensory journey like no other as you explore Columbia’s dynamic drink scene, where there’s something to satisfy every palate.

Pizza and Sushi Spots in Columbia

Columbia, SC, boasts a diverse culinary landscape, and among its treasures are exceptional pizza and sushi spots that cater to every palate and budget.

Whether you’re craving a slice of pizza perfection or the delicate flavors of sushi, Columbia has something special in store for you.

Pizza Paradise at Thirsty Fellow Pizzeria and Pub

For pizza aficionados, Thirsty Fellow Pizzeria and Pub is a must-visit. This popular spot serves up mouth-watering, American-style pizza in a casual and inviting setting.

Whether you’re indulging in a classic favorite or exploring creative topping combinations, Thirsty Fellow promises a pizza experience that will satisfy your cravings.

Mellow Mushroom Columbia: Pizza and Fun Atmosphere

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Mellow Mushroom Columbia is another excellent choice for pizza enthusiasts. Here, you’ll find not only delicious pizza but also a vibrant and lively atmosphere.

It’s the perfect place to savor a slice of pizza heaven while enjoying the camaraderie of a bar-style setting. Quick and tasty, Blaze Pizza is also worth a visit for those who appreciate thin-crust pizza with a wide selection of toppings.

Sushi Sensations at Inakaya Japanese Restaurant

If sushi is your culinary passion, Inakaya Japanese Restaurant is a shining star in Columbia’s sushi scene.

Known for its friendly service and excellent sushi offerings, this spot is considered one of the best in the city. Prepare to be delighted by the precision and artistry that go into each bite.

M Vista: Sushi and Asian-Inspired Magic

M Vista is another gem for sushi enthusiasts. Their delicious sushi and Asian-inspired menu promise a journey of flavors that will transport you to distant lands.

It’s a delightful fusion of tastes that showcases the diversity of Asian cuisine.

Saki Tumi Grill & Sushi Bar: A Lively Sushi Experience

For a lively atmosphere and an extensive sushi menu, look no further than Saki Tumi Grill & Sushi Bar.

Here, you’ll find not only great sushi but also a vibrant dining experience that’s perfect for gatherings with friends. The flavors are bold, and the atmosphere is electric.

To make your dining decision easier, here is a table comparing these top-rated pizza and sushi spots in Columbia, SC:

RestaurantCuisineAtmospherePrice Range
Thirsty Fellow PizzeriaPizzaCasual, Pub-style$$ – $$$
Mellow Mushroom ColumbiaPizzaBar-style$$ – $$$
Blaze PizzaPizzaQuick, Casual$
Inakaya Japanese RestaurantSushiCozy, Friendly$$ – $$$
M VistaSushiModern, Asian$$ – $$$
Saki Tumi Grill & Sushi BarSushiLively, Fun$$ – $$$

No matter your preference, these top pizza and sushi restaurants in Columbia, SC are sure to leave you satisfied and eager to return. So go ahead and indulge in the amazing culinary experiences that our city has to offer.

Exploring Fine Dining in Columbia

Columbia, SC, takes fine dining to a whole new level, where exquisite cuisine, impeccable service, and luxurious settings converge to create an unforgettable gastronomic experience.

Let’s delve into some of the city’s exceptional fine dining establishments, where Lowcountry flavors, fine wine, and opulent ambiance set the stage for a memorable culinary journey.

Halls Chophouse: A Steakhouse Gem

For those seeking an upscale fine-dining experience in Columbia, Halls Chophouse is the crown jewel.

Originally hailing from Charleston, this restaurant has quickly become the go-to spot for fine dining. With a commitment to excellent service and an array of exquisite steaks, Halls Chophouse offers a tantalizing fusion of Lowcountry-inspired dishes.

The elegant atmosphere invites diners to relax and indulge in the very best that Columbia has to offer.

Italian Wine Bars: A World of Wine Delights

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Columbia’s fine dining scene also boasts a selection of Italian wine bars and venues catering to various occasions.

These establishments showcase an extensive range of fine wines from around the world, elevating the dining experience to new heights and allowing guests to discover new favorites.

Pairing these wines with meticulously crafted dishes enhances the flavors in both food and drink, creating a truly immersive dining journey.

Lowcountry Cuisine: A Fusion of Flavors

Prepare to embark on a culinary adventure when exploring restaurants specializing in Lowcountry cuisine. These establishments embrace a delightful fusion of flavors and culinary traditions.

With a focus on local produce and seafood, Lowcountry cuisine embodies the region’s unique geographical and cultural influences. Expect dishes that pay homage to traditional Southern cooking while embracing contemporary culinary trends, resulting in a harmonious blend of the old and the new.

Fine dining in Columbia, SC, offers a symphony of exquisite flavors, a touch of Lowcountry charm, and an extensive selection of fine wines.

These establishments cater to discerning palates seeking a luxurious culinary journey complete with attentive service and an elegant ambiance. We invite you to explore the beauty and artistry of Columbia’s fine dining scene for yourself, where every meal becomes a masterpiece.

Downtown Columbia Eateries

Downtown Columbia, a culinary haven, presents an array of dining establishments that span the spectrum from traditional Southern delights to international flavors.

Whether you seek a casual meal or an elegant night out, this district has something to please every taste bud.

Motor Supply Co Bistro: Seasonal American Elegance

Motor Supply Co Bistro is a standout gem, offering a menu that celebrates fresh, seasonal American fare. This is a perfect restaurant in Columbia for date night or another special occassion.

Its stylish atmosphere and expertly crafted cocktails set the stage for a romantic dinner or a joyful celebration with friends. Here, every dish is a testament to culinary craftsmanship.

The Devine Cinnamon Roll Deli: Brunch Lover’s Paradise

For those who adore brunch, The Devine Cinnamon Roll Deli is a must-visit. This casual cafe beckons with inventive breakfast sandwiches, decadent cinnamon rolls, and comforting classics like shrimp and grits.

It’s the perfect laid-back spot to indulge in your morning cravings or satisfy your breakfast-for-dinner whims.

Cowboy Brazilian Steakhouse: A Meat Lover’s Dream

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If you’re on the hunt for a unique dining adventure, Cowboy Brazilian Steakhouse delivers.

This upscale buffet-style restaurant offers a tantalizing parade of succulent meats carved tableside, accompanied by an expansive salad bar and exquisite side dishes.

The elegant ambiance and top-notch service ensure a memorable dining experience that’s truly one-of-a-kind.

Revelry at Halls Chophouse

No visit to downtown Columbia is complete without savoring a steak at Halls Chophouse. Alongside its delectable steaks, this establishment boasts let’s you unwind with a drink while soaking in the city’s panoramic views. It’s an experience that elevates your night out to new heights.

Explore Downtown’s Culinary Tapestry Downtown Columbia is a treasure trove of culinary delights, featuring a diverse range of quality restaurants and bars beyond the ones mentioned here.

As you wander through this vibrant neighborhood, be sure to explore the rich tapestry of flavors waiting to be discovered. From traditional Southern cuisine to international wonders, downtown Columbia invites you to savor its culinary bounty.

Columbia Restaurants with Outdoor Seating

Columbia, SC, embraces outdoor dining, offering a plethora of restaurants where patrons can savor both delectable meals and the beautiful weather.

It’s an opportunity to relish the culinary delights of the city while basking in the open air. Here are some remarkable restaurants with outdoor seating that Columbia has to offer:

Real Mexico Restaurant Y Tienda

Transport yourself to Mexico while dining at this popular spot. With ample outdoor seating, you can savor authentic Mexican cuisine in a vibrant and genuine atmosphere.

It’s a sensory journey that tantalizes the taste buds and immerses you in the flavors of Mexico.

Midwood Smokehouse

For the best bbq in Columbia, head to Midwood Smokehouse. If you crave a hearty Southern meal, Midwood Smokehouse is the place to be. This restaurant specializes in barbecue and smokehouse dishes, and its outdoor seating area provides a relaxed environment to enjoy the mouthwatering, smoked meats. It’s a Southern feast you won’t want to miss.

Cafe Strudel

For a more casual outdoor dining experience, head over to Cafe Strudel on State Street in West Columbia. While they’re renowned for their mouthwatering strudels, this cozy cafe also offers an inviting outdoor patio. Sip a mimosa and indulge in a scrumptious brunch while soaking in the sunshine.

In addition to these gems, Columbia boasts several other fantastic outdoor dining options:

  • Cantina 76: With locations on Main Street and Devine Street, Cantina 76 offers patio seating at a limited capacity. It’s an ideal spot to enjoy Mexican-inspired dishes in a laid-back setting.
  • Grill Marks: Located on Gervais Street, Grill Marks invites you to grab an adult milkshake and savor outdoor seating near cooling fans. It’s a perfect choice for a refreshing meal.
  • Backstreets Grill elevates your dining experience with a new American menu and outdoor seating. It’s a delightful place to savor a meal while enjoying the fresh air.

From the flavors of Mexico to the Southern smokehouse experience and beyond, Columbia offers a diverse array of restaurants with outdoor seating. As you explore these establishments and more throughout the city, we hope you’ll relish the unique al fresco dining experiences that Columbia has to offer.

Reservations for Memorable Dining in Columbia

Securing reservations at Columbia’s finest restaurants ensures a memorable and hassle-free dining experience. Here are some notable options to consider:

Motor Supply Co. Bistro

With a menu that spans American and international cuisine, Motor Supply Co. Bistro is a popular choice among locals and visitors alike.

You can conveniently make reservations through OpenTable, where verified diners provide their valuable reviews. Expect exceptional food and service at this beloved establishment.

Cola’s Restaurant

For a refined dining experience in an upscale atmosphere, Cola’s Restaurant is an excellent choice, especially for special occasions like anniversary dinners.

To ensure you secure a table, it’s advisable to make reservations well in advance. You can find additional information about Cola’s Restaurant on TripAdvisor.

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Blue Marlin

Famous for its American and seafood dishes, Blue Marlin is a must-visit destination in Columbia, SC. Their She-Crab Soup is a crowd-pleaser. To secure a spot at this popular establishment, it’s wise to book your reservation in advance. Websites like Yelp and TripAdvisor can assist you with the reservation process.

Keeping up with the latest food trends and discovering must-try eateries adds an extra layer of enjoyment to your culinary adventures. By making reservations at these outstanding restaurants, you can savor their exceptional offerings without the worry of availability. Bon appétit!

Nearby Attractions

Columbia, South Carolina, is not only a haven for culinary delights but also a treasure trove of diverse attractions. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, an art connoisseur, or simply seeking a day of fun, Columbia has something to captivate everyone. Let’s embark on a brief tour of some must-visit attractions in and around this vibrant city:

South Carolina State House

This iconic landmark, nestled in the city’s heart, is a must-see. Home to the South Carolina Legislature, the State House boasts rich history, stunning architecture, and beautifully manicured grounds. It’s a captivating symbol of the state’s heritage.

South Carolina State Museum

Dive into a world of exploration at the South Carolina State Museum. With four floors of exhibits, this museum offers a comprehensive journey through the state’s culture, history, natural history, and science. It’s a place where knowledge and wonder collide, offering something new with each visit.

Columbia Museum of Art

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Art enthusiasts shouldn’t miss the Columbia Museum of Art. With a diverse collection encompassing European and American decorative arts, ancient treasures from Asia, Africa, and the Americas, as well as modern and contemporary art, it’s a visual feast for the senses.

University of South Carolina

Founded in 1801, the University of South Carolina is a significant point of interest. The historic campus provides a picturesque backdrop and a thriving academic atmosphere. A leisurely stroll around the campus reveals lush green spaces, captivating architecture, and a vibrant student community.

This brief guide offers a glimpse into the wealth of attractions in and around Columbia. Keep in mind that there’s so much more to uncover and enjoy in this remarkable city. Take your time to savor all that Columbia has to offer, and let each visit be a new adventure waiting to unfold. Happy exploring!

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the top sit-down restaurants in Columbia?

Columbia boasts several top-notch sit-down restaurants that cater to a variety of tastes and preferences. Notable establishments include The Devine Cinnamon Roll Deli, renowned for its delicious breakfast and brunch options featuring eggs and bacon, and The War Mouth, which specializes in classic Southern cuisine, offering dishes like pork chops and burgers with a touch of exotic ingredients like oxtail or venison.

Which rooftop restaurants should I try in Columbia, SC?

While our search results did not yield specific rooftop restaurants in Columbia, SC, we encourage you to explore local listings, as new and exciting dining experiences are always emerging in the city. You might stumble upon delightful rooftop spots that offer more than just breathtaking views; some may even serve unique dishes like crab cakes or ribs.

What are the newest dining options in Columbia, SC?

To stay up-to-date with the latest dining options in Columbia, SC, we recommend following local food blogs, social media accounts, and checking review websites like TripAdvisor and Yelp. Since the restaurant landscape frequently changes, these platforms will give you the most current information on new culinary experiences in the area, including cool places to eat in West Columbia.

Can you recommend some cool places to eat in West Columbia?

While our search results did not specifically focus on West Columbia, we suggest exploring Yelp or similar platforms for recommendations on cool places to eat in that part of town. The Yelp community offers many suggestions based on customer reviews and personal experience. You might discover hidden gems serving pimento cheese and green tomatoes or offering a relaxed atmosphere with brick walls.

Where can I find the best Italian cuisine in Columbia, SC?

Our search results did not mention any Italian restaurants; however, we recommend checking out restaurant listings on websites such as TripAdvisor, Yelp, or local food blogs to discover the best Italian cuisine in Columbia, SC. You can explore options for pasta, tomato-based dishes, or authentic Italian recipes like those found at Alodia’s Cucina Italiana.

What are the top seafood spots in Columbia, SC?

Although our search results did not specifically address seafood spots in Columbia, we did find some restaurants that serve seafood dishes. For example, Backstreets Grill offers a variety of American and seafood dishes, including crab cakes and ribs. To find more specialized seafood spots, we suggest exploring restaurant listings and reviews on platforms like Yelp, TripAdvisor, or local food blogs, where you can uncover the finest seafood options in Columbia, SC.