Upcountry Provisions (Travelers Rest)
Published Feb 17 2017
Hours of Operation: 7:30A-7P M-Sa
Location: 6809 State Park Rd.
Menu items consumed: sandwich on Wheat Focaccia with Chicken, Avocado, Cranberry Chutney; Cappuccino
So some people preach how important first impressions are, right? Whether it’s just by reminding you time and time again or whether it’s using phrases like “you only make a first impression once” (in as much of an Angela Lansbury-type mom voice as possible) it’s said many times. I wish someone would have reminded the lady who was at the counter of Upcountry Provisions the same. Firstly, allow me to discuss the atmosphere and food: cool and delicious (in that order). The sandwich I had, simply put, is quite possibly the best I have ever had (and surely was the best I ever had at the time of this writing). The Wheat Focaccia was warm, fresh, and ridiculously delicious with avocado and cranberry chutney that you wouldn’t believe! Everything on the sandwich tasted like it was just plucked from a garden to make this sandwich and it was flatly incredible! The Cappuccino was not bad but it also was not anything about which to specially note.
The outside of the building looks like an interesting pit-stop. The contrast between what the outside looks like and the more contemporary feel of the interior seems to argue with itself, yet in such a way it all seems planned and contrived in a fashion that makes it all work. With how good the sandwich was I would suggest ANYONE give this place a shot for it! However I must also address the service…rude! The lady that helped my mother and I at the counter, to a simple question of “what do you think is best?” gave nothing but attitude when she gave quick answers such as “it depends what you like” and “what do you want?” (in the rudest and most disinterested tone you could possibly imagine). I am hoping she was just completely oblivious to the way across which she came but I gave my mom a look of disbelief in how flippant this human felt she could be towards a patron of the establishment of her employment…yikes. I will say the employee was much more friendly when she brought us our food. However to have a café –style joint where the first interaction I have with you is to speak with you for all of 2 minutes max. at the counter while ordering and have you speak to me for 30 seconds later when you drop my food, this is NOT how you should allow me to remember it all.
UPDATE: I talk about ownership quite often when it comes to smaller businesses and how it's pretty obvious upon visiting a restaurant when you're interacting with an owner, one owner who genuinely cares above the individual experiences had by those who patron his/her restaurant. After reading this review the owner of Upcountry Provisions (Stephen Kraus) was kind enough to e-mail me to apologize and even offer a gift card. For the record I DID NOT expect this NOR did I ever think that such an occurrence would be a by-product of owners reading reviews of their own restaurants, but rather than being defensive and asking for another chance so the less-than-ideal pieces of my visit could be removed from "Where?...Never Heard of It" Stephen was apologetic and kind. Thank you, Mr. Kraus, for such ownership and just know (as I hope it is apparent in my previous writing about Upcountry Provisions) the attitude-laced initial service I received will not keep me from ever frequenting your establishment again (and how dang good that sandwich was will keep me telling people to come visit you folks, too).