Greensboro’s Restaurant Graveyard

If there is a truism about living in the Triad, it is this: people here love to eat out. More than any place I’ve lived, the residents of Greensboro enjoy dining out. A lot. Ask anyone who’s tried to get a table here after 6 pm and they’ll most likely tell you they had to wait. As the area’s population has exploded, so has the strain on Greensboro’s dining circuit. Yet despite all this, the place is littered with the corpses of eateries that for one reason or another, couldn’t take the heat. Some of these fine establishments were ahead of their time, others suffered from poor location, but a few died sudden and mysterious deaths. This post is dedicated to these wonderful joints, that for whatever reason, went the way of the dodo. Let us all join hands now and fondly remember:

Simply Italian – Doomed Italian Drive-thru

Simply Italian used to be located at the corner of Hilltop and Highpoint road near Adam’s Farm in Greensboro. It opened right after I moved to the area in 1994 and lasted less than a year, but what a year! The place was built around an old instant photo processing building and as such had no interior or exterior seating. You had to drive or walk up, order and take your food away. Simply Italian served some of the best Italian food I’ve ever eaten and offered huge quantities of classic Italian dishes for just pennies. You could order an entire 12″ lasagna for $7.00 and they’d even throw in garlic bread, utensils and more. The day Simply Italian closed was a sad one for me and my friends. A classic example of pricing yourself right out of business.

Hey Mon – Bermuda Triangle Swallows Caribbean Cafe

Formerly located at 2408 Spring Garden St. in Greensboro, Hey Mon was a jumping little joint that featured wonderful Caribbean flavors including spicy jerked chicken sandwiches, wraps and my all-time favorite – Caribbean cole slaw. When I worked at Image Technology, Hey Mon was one of our absolute favorite places to visit for lunch. The place was always packed and sometimes there was even a line out the door. One day at lunch, our group found the restaurant closed and a sign on the door saying they were moving. We were disappointed that we didn’t get our lunch, but excited that Hey Mon was moving into new, and possibly larger digs. Days turned into weeks, and weeks into months and still no Hey Mon. To this day I have no idea what happened to this awesome eatery. It’s almost like it never existed.

Sushi Rock – Seppuku, Sushi Style

This wonderful sushi house used to be located on Battleground Avenue and was known for its reasonable prices and wonderful decor. When my friend Talos first introduced me to Sushi Rock, I knew I had found my new favorite sushi restaurant. It didn’t take long to realize however, that the place was in trouble. Crowds thinned and prices rose slightly and then one day it was just gone. Thankfully there’s no shortage of good sushi restaurants in the Triad. My current favorites are U.S. Sushi at the corner of Eastchester and Wendover in Highpoint and the always yummie Asahi on West Market St.

Pie Works – Death by a Thousand Cuts

I know what you’re thinking. Pie Works isn’t dead, at least not yet. Technically that may be true, but if you’ve lived here as long as I have then you may remember that there used to be many more Pie Works’ than the one (yes, there is only one left) on Lawndale Ave in Greensboro. Pie Works serves up some of the best gourmet pizza this side of New York and yet the franchise is faltering. I used to frequent the small Pie Works that lived down on West Market back in the day, but that location didn’t last long and is now a laundromat. There used to be a Pie Works in Winston Salem as well, but that too is gone. There are now a grand total of 3 Pie Works locations in Louisiana compared to one in North Carolina. Like it or not, I fully expect the Lawndale location to visit that big pizzeria in the sky in not-too-distant future. I think I’ll miss the Rosemary Roast most of all. My stomach is sad.

Bo Hogs – Another Pig Bites the Dust

When Bo Hogs opened a few years back at the corner of West Market St. and Muirs Chapel road, the last thing I thought Greensboro needed was another BBQ place. Marked by good service, a friendly atmosphere and excellent food, Bo Hogs quickly changed my mind and it became my favorite NC barbeque joint. That was their kiss of death. Although they seemed constantly busy, like many other eateries I’ve fallen in love with, one day they just closed. No explanation was given and no forwarding address was left on the door for a new location. I calling the developer to find out what happened, but only got a cryptic “The owner decided to close it down.” in response. Oh the horror! Today, my favorite Triad BBQ places are Prissy Polly’s of Kernersville, Carter Brothers BBQ in High Point and Country BBQ on Wendover Ave. in Greensboro. Pig places may come and go, but there will always be a hush-puppy in my heart for Bo Hogs.

Restaurant Death Watch

Finally, here are a list of places that as of this writing, seem to be alive and kicking, but that I’m keeping a close eye on. My track record indicates that at least one or more of these places may go belly up within the next 3 years for no other reason than I enjoy eating there.

Mykonos Grill

– The best Greek restaurant in Greensboro, hands down. Took up the mantle after Pita Works closed in Quaker Village. Place is always packed to the roof at lunch, which unfortunately means it’s probably doomed.


– Brazilian steak house that hosts the Iconfactory’s annual Christmas party, or as we call it, “The Night of Meat“. Awesome food, great service. Seems underpriced for all-you-can-eat top notch cuts of meat. Danger Will Robinson!

Rearn Thai

– Their original location across the street on West Market was small but cozy and inviting. The new all-glass building is no bigger (maybe even smaller), but also cold feeling and loud. I’ve eaten there just once since they moved. This will be the one time when it’s not my fault when they go. Good food but their architect doomed them IMHO.

What about you? Have any favorite restaurants that bought the farm? Feel free to add yours in the comments below. Misery loves company!


  1. Don’t forget Simply Italian’s family size lasagna included a family size Caesar salad as well. The veggie lasagna is available in white sauce. So yummie.

  2. Kepley’s has the best BBQ in High Point. I also hate that the Westwind Cafe (Vietnamese) closed after being forced out of downtown. The owner was always personally concerned about his customer’s health. He used to tell me to drink lots of water and only eat meat once a week.

  3. add Sal’s Italian Restaurant to the list. It was on High Point Road in the corner. But I think the same person who had Sal’s is now at Villa Rosa near stanley road and wendover.

    Being a UNC-G Grad it was sad to see Spring Garden Bar and Grill go by the way side. THat was a great place to just hang out and enjoy a simple burger and a beer.

  4. I loved Mud Puppies on State Street for excellent cajun cooking but they didn’t last long.

  5. I didn’t even notice Spring Garden was gone. That place was around for a long time as was Sal’s.

  6. The old Spring Garden Bar and Grill is named something else now. I forgot the name. Now since we are on the subject of places that are close to closing. What is the status of Yum Yum’s on spring garden. Is it going to close are they just going to leave it there or what?

    I don’t know the answer but I do know that they have a great following for their hot dog’s and ice cream . But one aspect is that if they found a new location with better facilities and a cleaner look it might be a good thing. This is coming from a person who along with his high school buddies always dashed from Grimsley to have those hot dogs but smelled awful in the afternoon classroom and also at unc-g in classroom smelled like Yum Yum’s. Everyone always said you went to Yum Yum’s.

    This is not a death wish for Yum Yum’s but it would be great to see a little improvement in the facilities or if you are going to move just move and be done with it. If you are going to stay please put some money back into the facility it looks like crap.

  7. Sal’s was definitely a great place…terrible location. I really hope Mykonos stays around. I’d rather see them transition into more of a restaurant, thought. Their current model is…weird.

    My favorite places to go when I’m in the Triad are Saffron, Jack’s Corner, Cincy’s, Fincastle, and that great pharmacy/diner off Elm that I can never remember the name of (orangeade FTW).

    I miss Greensboro.

    Also, add Cloud Nine to the list. It was off Wendover and had good food and a nice atmosphere.

  8. Valencia down on Tate Street was a great little tapas place that my now-wife and I frequented during our courtship phase. With some sangria and a live band, you almost felt like you were in Spain…until some heavily-pierced teen skated by and gave you the finger.

    (I’ll always remember the local news doing a story on the area: “Tate Street? Some people are calling it FREAK Street.”)

  9. While it’s nice to see some stuff about my old hometown, its sad, too, to know that these places aren’t there anymore. My wife and I, when planning a trip back to the area, always talk about restaurants we used to love in GSO–and hope they still are. As long as I can still get a slice at NYP, a PBR in a bottle at Fishbone’s, and a used paperback at Ed McKay’s then I guess all isn’t totally lost:)

  10. How could you forget the Wild Magnolia? Great food and live blues. Another favorite of mine was the Lager Haus on Tate Street, where I spent the summer of 2006 drinking away my unemployment check and watching the Emberellas dance to the sounds of Global Repercussions. And then was always Quincy’s Steakhouse, home of the “big, fat yeast roll.” The food wasn’t all that hot, but my ex-girlfriend and I used to go there when we didn’t have any money but didn’t want to stoop to Mickey D’s. At least Beef Burger is still with us…

  11. Yum Yum’s is not closing. I know because I work there. Yeah, the place could use a face-lift, but with UNCG expanding even more, there aren’t too many other areas around there to move to.

  12. Different locale, same laments..

    Spring Garden’s Carrboro place was great too. Killed me when they closed, loved the burgers and the good cheap shots when I was a then young recent college grad … and then Pieworks in Cary closed when I was a then young newly married.

    And now I can’t even drive to Gboro to see them it appears?? TELL me that Pieworks isn’t shutdown… I can’t drive to La for that stuff!!

  13. Darryl’s on Church Street, Equinox in Friendly Center, Ham’s on Friendly, Bennigan’s, Jack Astor’s, Oh, Brian’s, Houlihan’s, DK Houligan’s, Sargi’s Pizza, Hugo’s

    Just to name a few more

  14. Spring Garden Bar and Grill had the best chicken wings. They were different from anything I have ever eaten. Someone stated they opened under a different name, any idea what it is? Or does anyone know where I can get the recipe.

  15. I miss ole Greensboro. They had some of my favorite restaurants ever, and I’ve lived in NYC and Atlanta. Burt’s, Liberty Oak, Saigon, etc. That’s great about Hey Mon. I’ve thought about that place many times over the years. My friend Grant and I were going to have lunch there, we pulled up, and it was closed. Boy were we bummed out. I’ve read that Kotis plans on reopening but as of 12/12 it isn’t ready.

    Here another oldie but goodie- Paisley Pineapple. That was one of the first “nouveau cuisine” restaurants in GSO. Anyone remember fried rattlesnake?

Comments are closed.