Revel’s Barbeque - Landmark Restaurant
Address: 685 US 15
Bennettsville, SC 29512
Phone: (843) 479- 8288
Cards: yes (but no American Express or Discover Cards)
Hours of operation: Wednesday – Friday 11:00 – 2:00, Sunday 11:00-3:00
This restaurant used to be knows as Revels but now the name on the sign outside says it has been changed to Landmark. Inside the restaurant, however, they still call it Revels, so heavens knows what the “Landmark” name refers to. It appears as if the name Revel’s is to be used only for the pork production operation that operates out of the building behind the restaurant. The Revel’s part of the business packages one pound containers of their barbeque and ships them to various grocery stores so they can have a barbeque-like product to sell to their customers.
The restaurant is open Wednesday through Friday for lunch only as there is no dinner served. They are closed on Saturday but they open again for the Sunday noonday meal. It is located only a mile or so out of downtown Bennettsville and the sign outside carries the logo of three civic organizations (Kiwanis, Lion’s, Pilot) so it must do a good lunch-time business with the locals.
When I was there last it was on a Wednesday at 1:00 o’clock and they were doing a reasonable business with a good number of customers both in the front room and in the back where there is even more seating. They offer a largish buffet that also includes a large salad bar that is separate. That bar even had that faux crab salad (pretty good) and all of those items that come with that type bar where all of the foods come from some wholesaler. The lunch buffet had fried chicken and Salisbury steak in gravy as well as barbeque.
I lined up and helped myself but I found both the collards and cabbage too sweet for my taste but the rice had a stewed tomato topping for a tomatoes and rice combination and there was also gravy but it looked suspiciously as if it came from a can. The mac & cheese was institutional also. They had a pan of thick baked beans that were also way too sweet but they had doctored them up with bacon to the point that I can see how lots of people might like them. They had not only corn bread but also fresh home-made biscuits on the line, so a place that does that can’t be all bad. I didn’t try the chicken as they were out when I got there and the lady helping supply the serving line was telling the customers that they would have some soon but when I left about a half-hour later that pan was empty again. In the mean time it had been refilled and emptied another time. The chicken must be the big seller there. The cost ($10) of the buffet included the tea and dessert and on the dessert bar they had chocolate cake and a yellow cake, cheese cake, chocolate and lemon pudding, banana pudding (and it was pretty good) and even cherry pie. If you take advantage of everything that they let you have for your money you won’t leave hungry.
The barbeque is minced and it comes from the processing plant that is behind the restaurant. It was a yellowish red and there was no sauce on the table. Unfortunately, the Revel’s barbeque that they serve on the buffet is the same as that which they package and ship to stores. The Revel’s plastic container has the words “electric pit-cooked” under the word barbeque and under the words electric pit-cooked are the words, “textured vegetable protean added.” A quick look around back at the processing plant fails to turn up any wood so the “electric pit-cooked” is an honest admission. As I say, I’ll bet the chicken is the favorite inside.
The barbeque is really roast-pork ground up fine with a sauce added and as always pork with a good sauce is tasty. In the review of another barbeque house in Marlboro County (Stanton’s) I briefly discuss why I think that neck of the woods is short on real pit-cooked barbeque. But as an average all-you-can-eat buffet this will do. Do note, however, that they have two large signs that say “We charge for waste.” How they determine what constitutes waste or if they ever confront anyone who they think is wasteful one can only wonder about. They also have a sign on the front door that says they don’t take American Express or Discover card.
Revel’s is being put in the “Worth the Trip” category so that if you are ever in that area (north of Bennettsville going towards North Carolina) you can stop in and see what you will be getting if you buy a pound container of Revel’s barbeque in a store.