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“Agree... Overrated”

Bruce's Fabulous Foods
Ranked #1 of 84 Restaurants in Marion
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$ 6 - US$ 15
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings, Local cuisine
Dining options: Reservations
Reviewed 29 July 2018 via mobile

Marion is finally coming around and the downtown area is improving but still no really good restaurants. Saw Bruce cooking on WLOS this morning and he used shortening,a cheap and disgusting alternative to butter,in his pie crust. Cheesecake is bad. From now on heading to Asheville for a good meal!!!

Thank Marianne D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (187)
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11 - 15 of 187 reviews

Reviewed 24 July 2018

As we headed north in convertibles from SC to enjoy a Carolina weekend in the NC mountains, our party of four chose to stop in Marion for lunch at Bruce’s Fabulous Foods. The choice was influenced largely from the favorable reviews and a 4+ rating. I noted the restaurant’s interior was small and every table occupied by customers, however an overflow area with a counter and stools was clear and we seated ourselves in full view of the food preparation area (similar to a diner layout). Our group ordered a variety of sandwiches and side items from a lunch menu that included a good spectrum of options for those wanting something different. I ordered the Boursin Club (not knowing what Boursin is) because a club sandwich is predictable, but the mystery of the Boursin (person, place, thing?) would add in some “risk” for the meal’s adventure element. I wasn’t disappointed. While eating my sandwich, I noted flavors unlike the average club of the past. As I was pulling apart the sandwich to examine the inside, the waitress stopped to give me a tutorial on the special herbal blend of Boursin cheese chosen for the sandwich. I now know what Boursin is and must find this and try to reproduce it at home. A free dessert was included with the option to “upgrade” for a small charge (what a clever way to move those cheesecakes).

Seated at the counter, I was in position to see every order come in on a slip of paper and leave on a plate with a food creation prepared by the skilled and focused cooking staff. I noted the chef (Bruce) was not involved with food preparation behind the counter, but used his time taking plates to the tables and socializing. I suspect his choice to serve customers in lieu of working in the kitchen is his management strategy to combine a final quality control check while collecting business feedback disguised as a friendly chat with the customers. I concluded Bruce must be a good businessman/instructor/mentor to yield employees that can reproduce his vision for a dining experience on a higher plane. The serving staff was efficient and exceptionally friendly to add that small-town hospitality customers secretly want to encounter. Customers pay their bills near the front door which can be somewhat congested with new customers arriving. The turnover of new arrivals and customers leaving seemed adequate for the small seating area to keep the wait time to a minimum. We interfaced with every member of the staff, including Bruce and his wife (cashier) during our visit. I plan to return on my next Carolina weekend headed north and (next time) quiz the staff for a recommendation before ordering. Well done Bruce and staff.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
2  Thank Sir_Bentley_Pushrod
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 July 2018 via mobile

Good lunch but picture on web looked like a meat n 3. The have mostly salads n sandwiches
Service was excellent

1  Thank billreedred
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 July 2018 via mobile

Wanting a quick and light lunch before golf we were glad we dined at Bruce's in downtown Marion. Arriving just after they opened. We shared the Chicken Salad wrap. There is No split charge and we each got a side with it. The sides are large portions. We had pasta salad and the Tex potato salad. The meal comes with cookies or brownie. The cookouts were hot and melt in your mouth. Last year we had the famous cheesecake that Bruce is known for. Very good. Staff is friendly!

This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 June 2018 via mobile

Bruce is from Elyria Ohio. Thus an Elyrian.

Bruce does a cooking segment on a local Asheville TV station.
Always a smile and an infectious laugh, we were entertained from the moment We first saw him. And the food he makes looked pretty good as well.

Well, we finally made the trip to his store. Nothing fancy, just a clean, crowded place with lots of really good food and a friendly staff always there to meet your every need.
One thing that sets him apart in the south is that he doesn’t own a deep fryer!

Everything in his place is made there, except for the potato chips you may want as a side.

The choices are many, with a number of standard menu items, specials and great selections of sides. Most meals include a side and a desert for an amazingly reasonable price.

The first thing I noticed was that Bruce takes every order from every table. Amazing!

His wife (a lovely lady with an outgoing personality) will most likely seat you, give you some info on specials and take your drink order. In a flash your drinks are delivered by another friendly server.

Then Bruce shows up, goes over the special, sides, answers questions, and helps you decide what to order if needed. Especially tough on your first visit, as this was for us. So I asked for help.

We went with the Tropical Shrimp salad (daily special), and with Bruce’s help, the Club sandwich on grilled pita, ramped up with pimento cheese.

Our meals seemed to come out to us in a very few moments.
Both were presented well, and tasted delicious. All ingredients in the salad were very fresh. From the mandarin oranges, to the field greens, to the shrimp dressed with a touch of curry. Just Delightful!

With the Club I got a cup of gazpacho. Arguably the best I ever had, including in Spain. Had a amazingly fresh veg flavor. I asked Bruce the secret ingredient. The key he said is making small batches of it to keep it tasting as fresh as all the Ingredients that make it up. Well now we know.

The club was excellent, with lettuce, bacon, turkey, etc on a nicely grill pita. But all brought together by his fresh pimento cheese.

Dessert closed out a great lunch. A great, moist spice banana cake, and a “Just because I can “ cheese cake. The latter, one of Bruce’s many cheese cake concoctions. The story the server told was it came to him a dream.

I don’t doubt it. Who’d put Carmel, raisins, peanut butter eggs, sprinkles and more into a cheese cake. He did and it worked- deliciously.

As I said, it was our first visit, but of many more to come.

If you can get to the area, make sure you go, you’ll be glad you did.

2  Thank Tom R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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