Explore, Eat, and Drink Your Way Through Lake Hartwell Country!

There is a whole world of outdoor activities to be found in Anderson, Oconee, and Pickens Counties, with always somewhere to go to enjoy nature in a new way, any time of the year. Of course, you’ll need to stop along the way for a little nourishment and refreshment. The flavors of Lake Hartwell Country are sure to make your mouth water, and our Food and Beverage Guide offers several worthwhile suggestions throughout our region, so find a few new places to try!

mexican food

If your search for adventure takes you anywhere near downtown Pickens, it’s well worth stopping by Street Tacos and Seafood. This locally owned restaurant is at 102 West Main Street and Ann Street, diagonally across from the Pickens County Court House. There’s a warm, welcoming family atmosphere with plenty of seating in a comfortable Mexican décor. They also have several tables outside for open-air dining. Everything they offer is also available for takeout. 

The extensive menu features classic Mexican dishes anyone can enjoy, as well as a variety of seafood items. Everything is prepared fresh, and the aromas when you walk in the door will make you even hungrier than you already are. Some of the favorites include Texas Nachos, the Burrito California, and Tacos Iberia. Or treat yourself to a taco salad, quesadilla, tamales or pollo fundidos. Be sure to check the board as you enter for featured specials.


If you have a taste for seafood, you’re in luck! One specialty is Camarones al Mojo de Ojo, a plentiful shrimp plate. You can get fish and scallop combos or aim even higher with one of many feast platters with names like No Shame, We’re Sharing, Family, and It’s a Party. Platter selections include crab legs, shrimp, crawfish, mussels, lobster tail, sausages, and a variety of sides. Whether you crave Mexican standards or ocean delights, owner Juan Rojas will definitely satisfy your hunger at Street Tacos and Seafood!

west & co taproom beers

Maybe your next excursion will allow you to swing by downtown Walhalla in Oconee County.  We hope so, because it will allow some time to enjoy a refreshing, cold beverage at West & Co.  Proudly known as “South Carolina’s smallest Tap Room,” this tiny libation station is tucked away behind Main Street buildings off Catherine Street. Look for the vertical signature logo painted on a tall brick wall by the door. 

West & Co. is a tiny, fairly new tap room in a historic setting. You can see brick walls from the 1800s, tables with reclaimed metal barn roofing, and a bathroom with aged shutters from the original Main Street hardware store building. Their eight taps offer regional brews, including a mix of IPAs, a stout, blonde options, and a sour. Selections change occasionally, just to keep things interesting. 

west & co taproom beer

Current offerings include Rip Current IPA from River Rat Brewing Company in Columbia, Marsh Hen Cream Ale from Revelry Brewing in Charleston, Cereal for Dinner Blonde Ale from Edmund’s Oast, and the flavorful Original Sin Black Widow Cider. The Black is Beautiful cinnamon coffee stout from Charleston’s Freehouse Brewing Company is also a nice choice.  And they offer a variety of canned beers from Left Hand Brewing, Victory, Catawba, Hop Art and many more. Seltzers and wine are available, too.

west & co taproom

While the tap room is small, the crowd is large and diverse…and always interesting. There’s a large patio for gathering outside, where they feature weekly bands April through October.  Happy hour at West&Co is from 4-6pm, Monday through Saturday.  Owner Tjay Bagwell would love for you to drop by and enjoy some liquid refreshment whenever you’re in the Walhalla area.

If you’ve been thinking about some serious home cooking, you should visit The Barnwood Grill and Market in Anderson. It’s at 2606 Whitehall Road, northwest of downtown, and not far from the shore of Lake Hartwell. This rustic little country restaurant is well known to lots of locals, and some regulars don’t even need to say their order out loud.

the barnwood braakfast

The Barnwood serves breakfast Monday through Friday from 6-11am and Saturday from 7 to 11. People rave about their “Trash Bowl,” a serious meal layered with a biscuit, cheese, sausage gravy, eggs, choice of meat, home fries and grits. They also have a variety of omelets and breakfast wraps. 

Lunch is served until 3pm weekdays, and 2pm on Saturday. There’s an abundance of great choices, including a variety of homemade burgers, hot dogs, and salads. And there are plenty of delicious sandwich options, like their famous Reuben, clubs, chicken wraps and a Philly cheesesteak. Sides like Carolina Caviar, jalapeño grits and delicious potato salad make any lunch meal complete.

the barnwod exterior

The Barnwood Grill dining room is heated by a cast iron wood stove, and it’s surrounded by all kinds of locally sourced market products. Choose from jellies, barbeque sauces, pickles, honey, chow chow, cheeses, cuts of local meat and even milk. Everything there is something worth adding to your kitchen at home. Stop by sometime and enjoy the local goodness.

Wherever you are in Pickens, Oconee, or Anderson County, you’re never far from a great restaurant or watering hole that will make your visit worthwhile. Make sure you take the time to patronize some of these fantastic local businesses. Explore, eat, drink, and enjoy the bounty of Lake Hartwell Country!

Places to Go, Things to See: