Beacon Drive In

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Play27
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2009/11/24 14:53:48 (permalink)

Beacon Drive In

Being forced to move out of my chair on Friday to travel from Greensboro, NC to Greenville, SC to visit SIL, nieces and nephews. I said I'd go (Like I have a choice) but only if we stop for lunch in Spartanburg at the Beacon Drive In. One problem, I've been reading reviews here and elsewhere (I'm starting to hate Travel Advisor) but is the Beacon really that dirty? Are the bathrooms really sub standard truck stop variety? Are the onion rings really that greasy?  I want to go but need affirmation! Come on folks!
#1

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    EatingTheRoad
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/11/24 17:53:50 (permalink)
    Personally I loved it. I didn't encounter any of those problems. The frings (1/2 order fries, 1/2 order onion rings) were great and the chili burger was fantastic. Worst case...go...have a good time and fill your belly with greasy truck stop grub...it's worth it!
    #2
    mayor al
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/11/24 18:00:01 (permalink)
    I second the "do it " suggestion. We didn't use the restrooms, so that wasn't an issue if they were sub-par. The sitting area for eating, both food and the ice cream treats was a lot of fun as you could 'observe' the action as it happens. We will go again next time we pass thru Spartenburg
    #3
    cecif
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/11/24 18:03:07 (permalink)
    Beacon Drive-In is my NUMBER ONE TOP ROADFOOD SPOT!
    Ok, there are others vying for a very close second.... wish I could remember where my trip report is and link it. Truly I loved it!!!!

    I can't say I used the bathrooms, but I suspect that since it is a VERY busy place at times, that if you use them later in the day, like any busy place such as this, they will be kinda dirty! Actually, I think I did use them now I think about it, but I was there for breakfast so all was fine. Personally, I like my onion rings a little greasy sometimes. :o)

    It is SUCH a great experience. And the sweet tea is the best I have ever had in my life period. Loved it and I don't really like sweet tea much.

    Oh and fwiw, there are at times negative reviews posted on this site that MANY regular RFers would disagree with. I can think of one in particular, you can PM me if you want to know.

    Go! Have fun! Eat for me!

    #4
    buffetbuster
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/11/24 18:10:25 (permalink)
    #5
    cecif
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/11/24 18:16:48 (permalink)
    buffetbuster

    Here you go cecif!

    http://www.roadfood.com/Forums/tm.aspx?m=337863&high=beacon



    HOLY CANNOLI that was fast! I'm wicked impressed.

    Sorry it isn't a bigger part of my trip report - actually that may have been one of the first (if not THE first) trip reports I ever wrote. I spent all my time on this board at first... LOL!

    #6
    John W
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/11/29 19:13:27 (permalink)
    The Beacon is a great place to eat. Since the Phillies farm team moved to New Jersey I don't get to Spartanburg much these days.
    However my advise is go easy on the onion rings. A full order might make you queasy. Find a friend to share an order. 
    I have heard their rodomontade about the vast quantities of tea, sugar, and onions that pass through but what about the grease?
    Don't fret about their facilities.
    post edited by John W - 2009/11/29 19:15:36
    #7
    badbyron722
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/11/29 20:09:29 (permalink)
    I miss the Phillies at Duncan Park.The 1st time I took my wife to The Beacon she wound up sick.lol.It grows on you.Ive been eating there my entire 47 years.The Onion Rings are my favorite and they are as greasy as it comes. We eat at The Beacon about 5 times a year.Its not everyday food,but when I get that craving nothing else will do.
    #8
    ayersian
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/11/29 23:11:54 (permalink)
    Play27, it all depends on what your threshold for RF really is.  I can look beyond just about anything if the quality of the food is going to wow me.  The Beacon is one of my favorite spots in South Carolina, but if you're not used to grease, then you may not like it.  I can't read between the lines of your post, and personally those Trip Advisor sites do nothing for me.  If you want a simple recommendation, then nearly every RFer on this site would say GO.  I've never used the bathroom there, and even if it was the dirtiest bathroom in the country, that would never cloud my judgment on the food.  The Chili Cheese-A-Plenty is the best of its kind, period.
    #9
    Play27
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/11/30 12:27:49 (permalink)
    I couldn't pass up a chance to go to a place as renowned as the Beacon Drive In. Wish I had gone for the Chili Cheese a Plenty but instead went for the Bacon Cheeseburger a Plenty. One kid had the the Outside Pulled Pork and the other the Fried Chicken Sandwich (I told her it was as big as her head...she ate every bite!) and wife went with mixed livers and gizzards. Overall, we'd go back. Food was good, not great. i've had better bacon cheeseburgers and bbq sandwiches. onion rings were really good and we had fun. Bathrooms were clean. Overall clean and worth going slightly out of our way to visit. Thanks all for your help.
    #10
    sudie
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/11/30 12:31:23 (permalink)
    The Beacon is our #1 Roadfood stop.  Love the "Outside a-Plenty", meaning with fries and onion rings.  I always eat the o rings first, as they aren't as good cool or cold.  The bathrooms are clean, but old, and I am sure that later in the day, they probably aren't as clean as they should be. Well worth the stop, or a detour.
    #11
    Nancypalooza
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/11/30 12:39:24 (permalink)
    I don't love their onion rings or their tea (ceci darling come down here and I will gladly make you some--that stuff is Nestea) but I really like their cheeseburgers a lot, and the atmosphere puts it over the top.  Go--hit the Costco on your way home. 

    The bathrooms are very clearly cobbled-together from smaller facilities back in the day like a lot of RF joint bathrooms; I don't remember them being terribly dirty but if you're a picky butt you probably would post to Trip Advisor about them.
    #12
    ces1948
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/11/30 16:52:12 (permalink)
    Nancypalooza

    I don't love their onion rings or their tea (ceci darling come down here and I will gladly make you some--that stuff is Nestea) but I really like their cheeseburgers a lot, and the atmosphere puts it over the top.  Go--hit the Costco on your way home. 

    The bathrooms are very clearly cobbled-together from smaller facilities back in the day like a lot of RF joint bathrooms; I don't remember them being terribly dirty but if you're a picky butt you probably would post to Trip Advisor about them.


    When you say they serve Nestea do you mean they use an INSTANT tea mix?
    #13
    mudbug
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/11/30 17:14:47 (permalink)
    I agree with the "greasy truck stop food" opinion.I'm not sure what I expected,but I left with a "been there done that" conclusion. Although I've never been,in Spartanburg I'd try Ike's Corner Grill,Nu-Way Lounge or Pk's Homestyle Cooking before I'd return to the Beacon.
    #14
    Nancypalooza
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/11/30 22:01:05 (permalink)
    I've never seen any proof that that's what it is, but it really really tastes like Nestea.  And they sell Beacon iced tea in the grocery stores and I'm always like, whaaaaaat?  Because we tend to be very picky about the Nestea here.
    #15
    EatingTheRoad
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/12/01 08:22:46 (permalink)
    Play27

    I couldn't pass up a chance to go to a place as renowned as the Beacon Drive In. Wish I had gone for the Chili Cheese a Plenty but instead went for the Bacon Cheeseburger a Plenty. One kid had the the Outside Pulled Pork and the other the Fried Chicken Sandwich (I told her it was as big as her head...she ate every bite!) and wife went with mixed livers and gizzards. Overall, we'd go back. Food was good, not great. i've had better bacon cheeseburgers and bbq sandwiches. onion rings were really good and we had fun. Bathrooms were clean. Overall clean and worth going slightly out of our way to visit. Thanks all for your help.


    Haha, nice to hear the bathrooms were clean. Glad you liked it. It's certainly worth a trip at least once to experience it, isn't it?
    #16
    cecif
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/12/07 17:39:33 (permalink)
    Nancypalooza

    I've never seen any proof that that's what it is, but it really really tastes like Nestea.  And they sell Beacon iced tea in the grocery stores and I'm always like, whaaaaaat?  Because we tend to be very picky about the Nestea here.


    Hmmmm. Not only do I know and hate Nestea... I (well, somewhat obviously) don't think it tasted at all like Nestea!
    Plus other folks have raved about the tea, I'm nowhere near the first. As we know though... opinions may vary, as ever.

    However, if Nancy's tea is better, I will SURELY take her up on that when next in SC!!!!! Yer on, girl!
    #17
    John W
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/12/07 21:51:22 (permalink)
    I believe Jane & Michael while listing the superlatives concerning the Beacon (car load of onions per week, so many tons of sugar etc) mentioned them as the world's greatest purveyor of Lipton tea. This was probably their 1977 Roadfood edition.
    #18
    John W
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/12/07 21:56:13 (permalink)
    Actually just partly checked it out. Jane & Michael's 1988 Roadfood and Goodfood quotes a sign in the Beacon-the LIPTON AWARD.

    My 1977 edition's marginal notation from 11-5-79 raves about the Beacon, while the note in the well worn 1988 mentions indigestion from the onion rings and the kids wanting real fast food (what could be faster than the Beacon?) on a 1990 trip.
    #19
    EatingTheRoad
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/12/08 08:20:16 (permalink)
    Their tea is much sweeter than Lipton's...
    http://www.beacondrivein.com/icedtea.htm

    Whomever bottles it probably just takes a generic iced tea mix and adds a butt load of sugar
    #20
    carolina bob
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/12/08 11:31:54 (permalink)
    I've eaten at the Beacon probably a dozen times over the years, and I've yet to have a disappointing meal there. I love the chili-cheeseburgers and fried onions ( "rings" isn't really an accurate description ), and I think that their sweet tea is sensational. The place has, in my experience, always been as clean as one can expect a busy fast food-type restaurant to be, and that goes for the washrooms as well. I usually get a wee bit of indigestion from those delicious onions, but hey, that what they invented Rolaids for.            
    #21
    Nancypalooza
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2009/12/08 13:59:32 (permalink)
    Then this may be a Lipton-Luzianne thing.   I'm kind of a snob about the Luzianne.
    #22
    TJ Jackson
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    Re:Beacon Drive In 2016/08/29 00:30:43 (permalink)
    I was very disappointed with my visit to The Beacon Drive-In on the way back from our trip to Savavannah and thereabouts
     
    https://www.yelp.com/biz/beacon-drive-in-spartanburg-2?hrid=tJl8-NB_U6heQNYdYyVP5A&utm_campaign=www_review_share_popup&utm_medium=copy_link&utm_source=(direct)
     
    Someone needs to fix the parking lot, clean the place up, and (most importantly) improve the food quality.  All the unique charm can remain.  I can see how it might well have been great in times past.  The size of the parking lot alone attests to great popularity at one time, but we were one of only two sets of customers there on the day of our visit, right at dinnertime
    #23
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