The River’s Edge Restaurant, located in the quaint Southern town of Cheraw, SC is found right on Second Street. Cheraw is a very small town located along the Great Pee Dee River in South Carolina, not far from the North Carolina border. After a day of back-road touring small Southern towns, we landed in Cheraw with the intent of having a late lunch at The River’s Edge. Unfortunately, we arrived around 4PM, a full hour before they were open for dinner. Not realizing they had odd hours (or odd compared to what we’re used to living near Fayetteville and Southern Pines), we were a little disappointed. No matter! To entertain ourselves, we walked around town and stopped by the antique shop across the street and the Kevin Lear on Main florist/gift shop a few stores down. Before we knew it, it was 5PM and they were open.
TripAdvisor is an amazing thing, I highly recommend! In the search for a restaurant, we found the River’s Edge. People raved about the food, especially the desserts, and the service. As the first people seated for dinner, we were shown a nice little table near the exposed brick wall, near the front window. The staff is very friendly and the restaurant is extremely clean, including the restrooms.
Now let’s get down to the good stuff! The food is delicious Southern cooking. After you order, while waiting for your meal to come, magically it seems, warm little rolls appear with – wait for it – honey butter and strawberry butter. Oooooo! If I could only tell you how delicious the rolls are with that melty butter spread in between their creases.
The salad bar was so fresh with a lot of variety and my salad hit the spot. I must have needed some greens that day, because I was craving a salad like nobody’s business! For the main dish my friend had the chicken fried steak, which he let me taste. The chicken fried steak was so tender and flavorful, and it was dressed with the creamiest and most savory white gravy you could imagine. The dish was made to Southern perfection. I opted for the chicken cordon bleu. It was moist and melted in my mouth. Stuffed with thinly sliced ham and melty cheese, the chicken was smothered in a velvety Hollandaise sauce. Mmmmm…..mmmmm! Worth savoring every single bite!
The main course was fantastic, don’t get me wrong, but the desserts are where you really need to pay attention! All I can say, and highly recommend, is save room for dessert!!!! The dessert tray is this wondrous three-tiered silver tray loaded down with every sweet, decadent dessert you can imagine! Fresh-baked confections of every kind grace the dessert tray: pies, cakes, cheesecakes, and other sumptuous treats are there for the pickin’. How could I possibly resist?! I didn’t.
Carrot cake is a favorite of mine but not one I make often, sadly. The last time I made carrot cake I was in my final semester of college, taking organic chemistry, pollution ecology, ornithology, and genetics. Plus I was working part time, my husband at the time was deployed, and my 13 year old son was in full school/sport mode. The blender broke as I attempted to chop the little carrots for the cake and it proved to be a snapping point for me. Needless to say, the neighborhood kids thought I was crazy after I cussed the blender out and threw it down the drive and continued to kick it to the trash can. Anyway, I digress! I waivered back and forth between the strawberry cake and the carrot cake, but in the end the carrot cake won. Excited at the prospect of the carrot cake, I also ordered the house specialty dessert, the “Bob” pie. The server said “Bob” was the creator of the pie, which is actually named the Toasted Coconut Caramel Pecan Cream Cheese Pie and the name explains why they refer to it as just “Bob.” Additionally, Bob has a cousin on the dessert menu too, the Bob cake, which looks moist and yummy.
The carrot cake tasted like fall. A good carrot cake should melt-in-your-mouth and burst with warm spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice topped with a silky cream cheese frosting. This cake did not disappoint! I was only able to chow down on half of the slice, but the best thing about that is it made a great breakfast the next day with a hot cup of tea!
What about Bob? Have no fear! Bob was devoured late Saturday night while watching the cooking channel in the comfort of my own living room. This fluffy cream cheese pie was topped with toasted coconut and bits of pecan and caramel in a flaky pie crust. It too was a delightful treat! I can see why it is a River’s Edge favorite.
Cheraw might be a little out of the way for some, but a back-roads tour of Southern towns is always interesting. You’ll see some great small towns, old homes, buildings, and mills and meet some interesting people. When you’re tossing around ideas for what to do on a weekend, don’t forget Cheraw! The town has a lot to offer and having a meal at the River’s Edge Restaurant and Bakery, with dessert of course, would be worth the visit!