We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

“Slow Service and You Don't Get What You Pay For” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of 21 East - CLOSED

21 East
Price range: US$10 - US$24
Cuisines: American, Bar, Pub
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Bar Scene
Dining options: Dinner, After-hours, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: Brown Street
Description: 21 east opened in June 2012 with the goal of being Greenville’s favorite new venue to drink, eat, and play. We strive to create unique and exciting drinks and dishes, in an atmosphere that keeps people coming back for more. Our chef, John Acker, is constantly working to ensure that our menu stays fresh and interesting. A primary initiative here at 21 east is also to promote “local” to the best of our abilities. This can be seen in the form of artists who perform here, all the way to the ingredients in our dishes. If you have not made it in to see what we are all about, you are without a doubt, missing out. So, come in and let our amazing staff take care of you. We look forward to meeting you! Cheers! Food. Spirits. Music.
Anderson, South Carolina
Level Contributor
47 reviews
39 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“Slow Service and You Don't Get What You Pay For”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 February 2014

Came in on a Saturday night at 6 pm to an almost empty restaurant. Were promptly seated in between 2 of the only 3 groups of people in the whole place. And the tables are about 10 inches a part which made our dinner very interesting. Since the tables are so close together, my friends and I got to be part of the extreme awkward first date that the couple next to us was apparently on. It kinda made things weird since we were trying to enjoy our own conversation but felt like we had to whisper to be mindful of the other two tables sitting RIGHT NEXT to us. I guess I just don't get why we had to be seated there when there were literally 10 other empty tables.

We were brought out menus and water by the hostess and another guy. And then we sat there. For probably 15 minutes. Finally a blonde waitress who had been chatting behind the bar the whole time decided she would come take our order. We got the lobster and spinach dip as an appetizer, which took almost 25 minutes to come out. It was pretty good, even though there is hardly any lobster in it, so $11 seemed a little high for spinach dip.

I ordered the 21 east Deluxe burger and opted for the parmesan truffle fries for an extra two dollars. The burger was okay. I guess I expected it to be more flavorable or something?? (If that's even a word...) Anyways, it was just okay. The fries were good, but I wouldn't recommend paying the extra two bucks b/c all they do is sprinkle a little bit of parmesan cheese on top. Again, I just felt a little ripped off paying 15 bucks for an "okay" burger and fries. My sister had the pan roasted airline chicken, which she enjoyed. She thought the sauce was a little weird but the veggies were good and chicken was juicy. Other guy in our group got the meatloaf which he liked a lot, but the portion was on the small side.

The major complaint was the service. We were constantly out of water, despite the hostess, another guy and our waitress all helping the tables around us. It seemed like majority of the wait staff preferred to hang out behind the bar talking instead of checking on their tables. As a former bartender and server, that kind of thing annoys me. There is not excuse for a table to have to stop the food runner (b/c their waitress is nowhere to be found) and ask for water TWICE. Had to grab her from another table to ask for boxes and then again to ask for the bill. But she got our bill back to us as fast as possible.... We are not difficult people to deal with and were not in a hurry, but the service was just slack. Probably won't be back due to the service.

One positive note: The awkward date guy had the chicken and waffles and they looked pretty amazing. He ate almost all of them so I'm assuming it was good.

  • Visited February 2014
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank cmmedlin07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

36 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    16
    13
    3
    1
    3
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Greenville, SC
Level Contributor
43 reviews
26 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
“Creative and delicious”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 February 2014

It was a real pleasure to find 21 East that had a nice selection of non-fried seafood on the menu as well as other entrees. It is hard to find good seafood in Greenville. We live in Greenville and have the pleasure of visiting downtown every so often for a nice meal, of which there are plenty to choose from. But so many downtown restaurants seem like they are some form of Southern fusion which can get a little old, so 21 East was a refreshing change of pace!

We made reservations an hour ahead of time via Open Table and were seated a little bit early with no problems. We always eat early before a place fills up if we can help it. We dressed casually in jeans and did not feel out of place doing so.

For starters, my husband had the lobster bisque special and I had a bowl of she crab soup. Both were delicious, although I do wish my soup had had meatier pieces of crab in it. But it was flavored so perfectly with the right balance of sherry and cayenne that I was willing to forgive that and would order it again without hesitation.

We also ordered cocktails, which seemed huge. I ordered the Sedona with gin, St. Germain, fresh jalapenos, strawberries and Sprite. I loved it! Loved the sweet and spicy combination, and it came in a large glass that held out all through dinner.

For our entrees, my husband had the Chilean sea bass over rainbow swiss chard and sweet potato strings. I opted for the diver scallops over polenta cakes. The portions were perfectly sized to fill us up and still leave room for dessert. Both dishes are some of the best we have had in a very long time. We appreciated the freshness and the flavor pairings.

Their dessert menu is sparse with two regular selections and one special that evening. We both had the special Cheesecake Canape served with chocolate covered strawberries and pistachio cream. Beautiful presentation and delicious without being too sweet or too big.

We will most definitely visit there again so that we can sample more of the menu!

  • Visited February 2014
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank randmel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Forest City, North Carolina, United States
Level Contributor
11 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Very Disappointed”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 January 2014

My husband and I made reservations here for New Years Eve. We called and said we were going to be a few minutes late because the hotel forgot to call us a cab and they told my husband that they were pretty full and they would see what they could do for us. We get there around 540, about 10 minutes after our reservation, to an almost empty house. There was one table downstairs. I had a feeling we should have just went somewhere else at that point. Our server was Melissa, and she was nice and friendly. She brought us our drinks shortly after we arrived. My husband ordered a beer, and I got a Long Island Iced Tea. My drink was absolutely the most poorly made drink I have ever had. There was so much pepsi in it that it was brown and carbonated. In case the bartender didn't know, it is a splash of pepsi, not half the glass. It was awful. I wasted $10 on it and didn't even drink it. The only part of my service that I was disappointed in was the fact that no one asked me if I liked the drink. Part of the art of waiting tables is being able to tell when your guests are unhappy with something and doing your best to remedy the situation. She did not do that. We ordered the calamari appetizer, that is described as flash-fried. It was burned and rubbery. I know we are inland, but if Olive Garden can get calamari right anytime, then it can't be that hard. She brought us another order that was slightly less burned, and being the nice person that I am, I didn't complain about that, too. Still, another waste of money. For our main course we ordered the ribeye, served with mashed potatoes and seared vegetables, and a burger. The ribeye was $25 and was a very small cut for the price. The mashed potatoes were excellent, as were the veggies, but the price? C'mon. Either you are going to serve bar food or casual dining cuisine. You can't serve bar food for these prices. My burger was $14, and while it was good a perfect medium, I was otherwise un-impressed. My burger was served with parmesan-truffled french fries. In other words, it means that they sprinkled a bit of cheap parmesan cheese on top of the fries, which were burned as well(but not even hot) and charge you $2 extra. Seasoned folks would call that highway robbery! Our bill came to $71. I have NO problem paying for food. Food can be magical. But this was far from it. This place is pretending to be something they are not. I wanted to try something new. This was the first real night out that my husband and I have had in 7 years with no children, and I was highly disappointed. I know one less place I will be visiting when I am back in Greenville. One more thing....we happened to see either the manager or the owner while we were there. Part of building business, as I know because I work in the service industry and have for a long time, is talking to your guests, and making sure that their experience is phenomenal. People are more likely to come back when they feel welcome. The manager/owner hid behind the bar almost the entire time we were there. I saw him seat one table, but other than that he spoke to no one except the employees. Way to build business.

  • Visited December 2013
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Nickki R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alexandria, Virginia
2 reviews
“Rehersal Dinner”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 December 2013

Lilly Ng and her staff made it so easy to plan for my son's rehersal dinner from 500 miles away. The food was delicious, the staff friendly, and room size was perfect for a group of 50. Everyone loved the food. The chicken tenders and fries melted in your mouth; the marinated flank steak and Boursin whipped potatoes were outstanding. Can't say enough about the wait staff. Overall an excellent experience. Would definately recommend for any casual, private pary.

  • Visited November 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank A M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
25 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Not just a dance party”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 July 2013

We've been to 21 East several times for the late night party scene and it's decent. Twice now though, we have been for dinner and I have been beyond impressed. The chicken and waffles are well put together with sweet potato waffles and a homemade hot sauce. The chicken is tender and crispy on the outside. Shrimp and fried grits as an appetizer is a must. I'm a northerner. I hate grits. These were like nothing I've ever tasted and the sauce on top was delectable. We also had lobster mac & cheese. Need I say more. Greenville has such a great food scene and with Tupelo Honey here now, I find it difficult to want to go anywhere else. I am so glad that we remember 21 East and I highly recommend them for a quality dinner in Greenville. A definite contender in the food scene here.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Amber R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers who viewed 21 East also viewed

 

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing