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Fuddruckers, 1801 Bush River Road: 6 February 2020   10 comments

Posted at 12:13 am in closing

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Well, I am saddened by this one, but not surprised. I have been going to Fuddruckers for many years, and it has been obvious over the last several that there was minimal money for anything more than basic upkeep on the store. There was never a real update to the fixtures, and certain booths would break and never be fully repaired. Starting perhaps ten years ago, the hours dropped off a bit, one side of the burger condiment bar was retired, and the patio was basically abandoned.

Still I stopped in every six weeks or so because I did enjoy the burgers (and the buns!). I noticed that over the years the same faces would be there month after month -- something that is pretty uncommon in the restaurant business these days. The story in Cola Daily makes the point that the manager had been there since the store opened.

As I said, I have gone many times over they years, but some people take it to another level. The Fuddruckers model is you place your order at the register, take your drink, sit down, and then come back to the counter when your name is called. Last year I heard: "Bob, your 25th anniversary dinner is ready!"

This was Columbia's only Fuddruckers. There are at least two on the coast, and apparently several in the upstate.

(Hat tip to commenter Heath)

UPDATE 13 February 2020 -- Here are some post-closing pictures:

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Written by ted on February 8th, 2020

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10 Responses to 'Fuddruckers, 1801 Bush River Road: 6 February 2020'

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  1. The sign at the second entrance to the lot toward I-20 now says "Thank you Columbia for 34 Great Years". Have gone there since the beginning, and went a couple times recently for specials, but definitely was not the bustling place it used to be. Too many new places and no real hook to come here, I guess. Only place where you could get your own add-ons, and could get enough lettuce and tomato and stuff to make a salad. Maybe that's what did it. Might try again if I'm ever in Greenville.

    gofinsc

    8 Feb 20 at 3:10 pm

  2. I ate there just a couple of months ago after raving to the GF how good their burgers were. They were no longer anything great. Maybe The Villa will move in there and get out of the dungeon that is their building.

    Dan R

    9 Feb 20 at 6:48 am

  3. @Dan R - don't mess with the Villa!

    Heath

    9 Feb 20 at 11:56 am

  4. However, it would be a great place for Real Mexico. No more playing Frogger crossing Bush River from the unofficial auxillary parking area!

    Heath

    9 Feb 20 at 12:00 pm

  5. As much as I hate to see Fuddrucker's go because of fond memories eating there dating back to my childhood and everything I do agree with Heath that it could easily make for a nicer space for Real Mexico as theri current space is tight in just about every way possible...

    Andrew

    9 Feb 20 at 1:24 pm

  6. I agree that going to The Villa is like entering a submarine. I would go there more often had they some windows..

    However, the Fuddruckers space isn't that much better. The main part is conspicuously window-deficient. I always sat in the back area because of that, even though there were no booths back there, and the flow was very bad.

    ted

    9 Feb 20 at 8:15 pm

  7. We used to go there for lunch on a regular basis, then I moved offices and was too far away. We moved again, and I went recently. I have to say, either my memories of the food were really rosy, or the quality really dropped off. The burger seemed small and unremarkable, the bun wasn't quite as fluffy as I remembered and had a bit of an chemical/sweet flavor, like maybe they used artificial sweetener to make it, and the fries were kind of bland. The toppings also tasted bland and cheap. I guess they had to in order to maintain the price of everything, but that eventually kills restaurants.

    Matthew

    10 Feb 20 at 12:46 pm

  8. Was a regular customer from year 1 up to a few days before discovering they were closed. Never had a bad burger there. Rated all other burgers against Fudds. Sorry to see them go.

    Greg

    10 Feb 20 at 5:17 pm

  9. Sorry but Real Mexico is nothing special. Last 2 times I ate there it was typical slop in the vein of Montereys or San Jose. Better Mexican can be had at El Mariachi on 378.

    Dan R

    11 Feb 20 at 6:12 am

  10. One of my family members heard that corporate wanted the owner of this Fuddruckers to remodel/update, and he refused.

    Robin

    13 Feb 20 at 10:23 am

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