Recent Comments

Recent Posts




Julie's Garner's Ferry Road: late 1980s   25 comments

Posted at 8:03 pm in Uncategorized

Julie's was a small Columbia restaurant chain with a Bennigans-like concept. There were two in town, one on the frontage road at the Broad River Road/I-20 interchange, and one on Garner's Ferry Road near the old Woodhill Mall (about where Hampton Hills Athletic Club is now, but closer to the road).

I think these two started in the heyday of restaurants like Bennigans and Tuesdays 1865 (though those chains never came to Columbia for some reason), but never updated after their initial opening. I was more-or-less unaware that they existed until a group of friends ended up going to the Garner's Ferry location one night. Along with the standard burgers, steaks and pasta dishes, they also had a few Mexican items on the menu, and one, quesadillas was something I had never had (Mexican food was not very common at the time) and sounded interesting. In the event, I enjoyed it, but ended up with food-posioning from bad sour cream, and spent two days flat on my back (when I wasn't racing for the bathroom). I felt so low that I was unable to get up from the couch where I was lying in order to turn off the TV when one of my all-time most hated shows, The Scarecrow & Mrs. King, came on.

Needless to say, I never went back to Julies, and both locations closed sometime in the late 80s, the I-20 one after Woodhill. I don't recall anything else going into the building at Woodhill; I think it was torn down soon after Julie's closed, but I believe the building of the I-20 location did house something else before it too was demolished.

Update 30 May 2008: Added pictures of the doctor's office now on the old Julie's lot.

UPDATE 30 July 2012: I believe this building was the Julie's off I-20.

Written by ted on January 24th, 2008

Tagged with , , ,

25 Responses to 'Julie's Garner's Ferry Road: late 1980s'

Subscribe to comments with RSS or TrackBack to 'Julie's Garner's Ferry Road: late 1980s'.

  1. After I-20 closed, it was a ribhouse of some sort. My wife, then girlfriend and I went there, and they had apparently boiled the ribs, but failed to cook them any further and served them w/o any sauce. That was our first and last visit.


    22 Feb 08 at 11:43 am

  2. Boiled ribs, yum!


    22 Feb 08 at 12:51 pm

  3. A physician's office was built at the site of the old Julie's on Garner's Ferry.


    14 Mar 08 at 3:59 pm

  4. Well, that's what I needed after eating there..


    14 Mar 08 at 10:49 pm

  5. They lasted into the 1990s: I remember we ate at the Garners Ferry one just after Hugo (our criterion for a restaurant: working electricity), and it was still "Julie's Place". They later changed their name to just "JULIE'S" for a couple years on the signs, then they closed entirely, my guess would be around '95.


    21 Mar 08 at 9:59 pm

  6. Interesting. I didn't remember them as being there that late. Yep, working electricity is a big selling point.. I may make a Hugo post someday if I ever get those pictures digitized.


    21 Mar 08 at 11:12 pm

  7. I love your site - just stumbled across it today. My husband & I had one of our first dates there on 2/25/95 - yes, I have an uncanny ability for dates...we had a nice experience, and tried to go there again, but it was being turned into the doctor's office.

    Thanks so much for all the info on here - I moved to Columbia in 1992 when I was 20, and you have brought back some memories!


    21 Apr 08 at 1:15 pm

  8. You're welcome Nancy!


    21 Apr 08 at 9:25 pm

  9. Wow flashback to 1989 - my only trip to this place was the week after Hurricane Hugo hit - we had no electricity in Shandon for many days and most of the local restaurants were closed. Julie's was the only place open and boy were we grateful even though the food was less than mediocre. It was packed with folks who were dying for something other than peanut butter and crackers.


    30 Apr 08 at 5:40 pm

  10. You're the second person to mention the Hugo connection! Guess it was a beacon in a storm, so to speak.


    30 Apr 08 at 7:01 pm

  11. The name of the ribhouse the I-20 location became was the Chicago Smokehouse. It was only open for a matter of months i believe. We ended up there on one Valentines night (dont ask...long story) and they served me and my pregnant wife chicken fingers that were raw. I cussed out the kitchen manager in the lobby. Fun tims. Luckily no one got sick, but i like to think that i was the beginning of the end for that restaurant. :)


    20 Aug 08 at 4:31 am

  12. Between your experience & Jonathan's -- I'm glad I never tried the Smokehouse!


    20 Aug 08 at 10:24 am

  13. Ate there a few times back in the 80's. It was another date night must go for the VA side of town. They had really good blackened sword fish. We also went there for happy hour because the mixed drinks were two for one. It was a deal paying only $4.00 for a White Russian (one mini bottle of vodka and one of Kahlua) and getting a second one free!

    Ned Harkey

    10 Jan 12 at 12:29 am

  14. Julie's was open at the Garner's Ferry location until at least 1997. Also, the original building was not torn down; it was incorporated into the current building that is there now.


    10 Jan 12 at 8:28 am

  15. My wife and I really liked Julie's Place, although we seldom ate there. We went on cold nights and just sat for hours in front of the fireplace in their bar sipping Irish coffee. Wonderful for a couple of apartment dwellers.


    11 Jan 12 at 8:53 am

  16. I have good memories of Julie's Place when I was in graduate school in the early 80's at USC Columbia. I live in Watertown, NY and havve been to Columbia only once a few years ago. The restaurant business is so demanding that a small chain like Julie's got lost in the chain restaurant shuffle.


    10 Jan 14 at 5:20 am

  17. I remember Julie’s as being one of the most fun places I ever visited. That’s probably because I was a musician back in the 80s and I played there many times. Met some great people while I was there. Here’s to Tiffany.


    29 Apr 18 at 6:02 pm

  18. nope... it was August 1993!!!


    29 Apr 18 at 6:15 pm

  19. Anyone else remember their delicious Monte Cristo sandwich?

    Midnight Rambler

    30 Apr 18 at 7:10 pm

  20. Yes! The monte cristo sandwich was great.


    1 May 18 at 6:37 pm

  21. I worked at Julie's Place from February of '79 when it first opened until June of '81. I remember it well. Some 'wild and crazy times' there. Very busy on weekend nights. The waitstaff was like a family. When I graduated from USC I moved on but I have very good memories of it. I remember well Joan, Molly,Sue and a bunch of others! They also had a good breakfast brundh on Saturdays and Sundays.


    4 Feb 19 at 10:49 am

  22. I was doing a search for anything about Julie's Place when I found this. My first visit was around (Garner's Ferry) April 1979 because I had turned 28 and my Dad wanted to take me out for my first official alcohol drink. He tried to order me a mixed drink, thinking it was legal. But at the time 18 was legal for beer and 21 for liquor. We sat in the brown paneled bar with the cool free popcorn machine. I loved their food! It became my go to place and I got a job there. Every time I worked I got the sauteed mushrooms which were cooked on a flat, cast iron pan in the open (pizza?) oven. They came out almost roasted. Mmmmmm. My next favorite was the fried zucchini. It was dreamy! They were cut in thick strips, length-wise and flash fried with a light breading. They were served in a basket and sprinkled with parmesan cheese and a side of spicy horseradish sauce. Mouth-melting!! I have tried, to no avail, to replicate these recipes in my kitchen. I would love to have the original recipe!! R.I.P. Julie's Place!!

    Lynda Curtis

    10 Mar 19 at 8:26 am

  23. Oh I turned 18, not 28!!!

    Lynda Curtis

    10 Mar 19 at 8:28 am

  24. We used to celebrate anniversaries there and my favorite was smothered chicken. I'd love to have the had cheese vs gravy and was delicious. I recall that it was the restaurant in or beside LaQuinta Inn. Hope I remembered that correctly.

    carol giauque

    8 Sep 23 at 7:28 pm

  25. I used to take my girlfriend there.
    The food was good but it seemed a little more fancy by Columbia standards because they had a proper place setting and cloth table cloths.


    8 Sep 23 at 8:31 pm

Leave a Reply


Recently Updated Posts