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Nick's Tavern & Deli

Not Rated.
Nick's Tavern & DeliNick's Tavern & Deli
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

25 Ratings
Ratings: 25
Reviews: 19
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: n/a
Taps: 18
Bottles: 40
Cask: N
[ Bar, Eatery ]

107 Sloan St
Clemson, South Carolina, 29631-1483
United States
phone: (864) 654-4890

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Notes:
Place added by: bobbyc881 on 07-08-2005

No notes at this time.
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Ratings: 25 | Reviews: 19
Reviews by timtheenchanta:
Photo of timtheenchanta
3.68/5  rDev -12.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Originally "Pat Blue's Golden Nugget" this bar has plenty of stickers on the wall proclaiming it to be the "oldest bar in Clemson... est. 1976." Also, no liquor! Straight beer. That makes this a nice find for a college town.

Great atmosphere. This place is covered with breweriana. They have a nice bottle collection behind the bar including "beers of the months" from almost a decade. There's ton of entertaining things on the wall including a sign behind the register saying "If you're drinking to forget please pay in advance." The also have a classic pinball machine along with a Galaga/Ms. Pac Man machine. The only downside I see to the atmosphere is that both times I've been is at lunch and this place isn't too big. It could get crowded and smokey very quickly. And there's a snake. I hate snakes.

The service is up and down depending on who is behind the bar. Never really bad though.

The selection is great... considering what else is available in town/in state. While I write this, there is still an ABV cap in South Carolina (hopefully that will change soon). I counted 16 on tap and 64 bottled (not the most in town but doubles all of the rest). They brag about having the most taps in town (which I believe they have by three). So this bar has a good pick of beers considering.

The food is better than most bar food in that they have nice healthy choices. They also just make really good bar food.

If you're in Clemson, you should stop by this wonderful watering hole as it's right in the center of downtown and possibly the best in town.

More User Reviews:
Photo of scvance
4.23/5  rDev +0.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Nick's tends to be overshadowed by the other bars in Clemson and gets the reputation of being the hangout for the professors, grad students, liberal arts majors, and generally older crowd. The reputation is well earned, but maybe just because these people also happen to be the ones that enjoy dropping a little bit more cash for something they haven't tried or can't get elsewhere. Nick's is a great bar with a great selection of beer (no liquor). They keep the taps rotating with a few constants like your Guinness and even Delerium is pretty standard here. Other's come and go, a lot of local ones, Thomas Creek or RJ Rockers, Sweetwater, and a couple more. They have a great selection of bottles to chose from and always have the right glassware (though sometimes you have to ask cause not all the bartenders seem to know what's up). The kegs go fairly quickly so the beer is usually fresh. The food is pretty good for your average bar fare, but the sandwiches is where it's at, especially the Reuben. Great, mostly friendly staff that are pretty knowledgeable, most know more about IPA's and Belgian's than they do about the German's and some others. Overall the best beer bar in Clemson.

Photo of businesstime
3.9/5  rDev -7.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3

For Clemson, Nick's Tavern is the only place to go for decent beer. They have about 15 beers on tap and usually 1 or 2 local beers (Terrapin, Skull Coast, Thomas Creek, Coast, Westbrook). Most of the cans/bottles are pretty expensive, though.

The staff is knowledgeable on most styles and serving glassware. The folks who eat and drink there are mostly college graduate students.

Food is OK, if you are into short order fried goodness (corn dogs and cheese sticks). I've never tried any of their sandwhiches, to be fair.

Overall, a good beer place for a small town like Clemson.

Photo of dbhall
3.56/5  rDev -15.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5

the atmosphere in this place is the best part about it. it has the weirdly cool college dive bar feel where all the artsy english majors hang out after a long hard day of doing whatever they do. anyway. the service is fairly good and the bartender was helpful in trying to get me to try some different beers to fit my taste. the selection was lacking, but hey this is clemson. i hear the lunch there is good but i didnt ever go there. overall a kinda cool place in clemson to get a beer. i would go in here again.

Photo of chinchill
4.22/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

I've been to this local establishment a number of times over the years. They've always had a relatively diverse and interesting selection of beers and an obvious respect for good beer. Even before the beer craze of recent years, Nicks already had plenty of 'exotic' beers available.

I visited again over the weekend on the occasion of their anniversary. Consequently, the bar was packed but, nonetheless, service was decent and a bit of party atmosphere prevailed.

Taps included both Delirium Tremens and Nocturnum (my choice), several unusual IPAs and Pale Ales, their usual Bass and Guinness, and others. Plenty more in bottles and cans. They provide variety in style, origination, and pricing. Too small to have all the most appropriate glassware, they do make an effort. So, for instance, both Delirium brews were served in snifters.

Located in a small college town, students are usually found here, but the clientele is a mix of faculty, university staff, students (mostly graduate level, I believe), and a wide range of others. Over the years, the proprietors have amassed a nice collection of beer paraphernalia that serves as the primary decor, with a ceiling of international flags and some soccer (futbol) items. Seating consists of wood benches and tables plus a bar that seats about 16.

If you are in town, or nearby, and want a beer, this is the place!

Photo of HeyItsChili
4.03/5  rDev -4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5

Nick's is a breath of fresh air between the cheap beer bars and younger crowds at Clemson's other bars. Boasting a mellow, slightly retro interior and a terrific selection of beers on tap and bottled, it should be the top destination for anyone serious about beer. There's usually some interesting stuff on the taps and new bottles are brought in pretty regularly with some occasional rare selections. I think they've got at least 50 different bottled beers. Haven't tried the food, but I've heard it's good.

Photo of thagr81us
4.28/5  rDev +1.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Stopped into this location while visiting a friend in Clemson for the weekend. I had been here before but have never reviewed it. Upon walking up on the building it is VERY obvious to spot with the massive white/red 'Nicks' sign over the entrance. Upon walking in is has a nice vibe to it with plenty of seating, open floors, and bar space. Awesome music was being played while I was there but wasn't loud enough to be annoying and you could easy talk to others without yelling. They also allow dogs to come indoors as well, just make sure they are behaved or you will be asked to leave. They had quite a nice selection of brews on tap the night I was there. They had more bottles, but I didn't ask to see the bottle list as I came to put a hurting on the tap that night. Had a buddy order some food that looked and smelled amazing, but didn't try any. Overall for Clemson, this is a BA bar... Not crowded with college guys and girls and a nice place to catch a nice brew. Totally worth checking out if you are in the area.

Photo of feelmefoam
4.22/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This place is pretty cool. Awesome atmosphere in an awesome college town. They have a lot of bottled beers, about 60 I believe, as well as about 20 beers on tap. Most of them are pretty good craft beers, and they also have a nice selection from the local breweries. I didn't get awesome service, but that could be because I went in at midnight and they were slammed. They also have some delicious sandwiches as they are considered a deli as well. Overall, my favorite bar in Clemson; a place where I can go grab a good beer and some good food.

Photo of PipeSmokeMcGee
4.13/5  rDev -1.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Nick's is a pretty cool place...Clemson's only real Beer Bar. It has been around for over 30 years, and has some very old bottles decorating behind the bar to prove it. They've got about 16 taps, and both Delirium Tremens and Nocturnum have found their way into the permanent taps.

They also have a decent regional selection: Thomas Creek, Highland, Foothills, etc.

Very eclectic atmosphere all the way around. If you want a beer in Clemson, this is the place to go. The service isn't great, but the beer is great and the food is good too.

Also, since the smoking ban of 2008, there is no smoking in the place...I guess that's a plus for a place with **good** beer.

They are also known for their constant special: $1 Schlitz. Hey, if I must say, it ain't bad after a hard day of manual labor in the heat.

Photo of jballeng
3.95/5  rDev -6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

From Florida, but I stop by this funky little tavern every time I head up to Seneca. Clemson is just about ten minutes away. The owners are way-back-when family friends of my cousins so we are always assured a good time.

Pretty damn good selection of draft and bottled beers, both unique and commonplace. There seems to be emphasis on IPAs and Imperial Stouts. Their bottled high gravities are listed separately on the menu, and there is a decent selection there as well. The menu is lacking in description, so you need to know what you are looking for before you order - or you could just ask one of the staff and they will be happy to describe beers and make suggestions. They always seem to pour into the appropriate glassware for the beer, which is a definite plus. One gripe I have is the relative lack of Belgians, Chimay Blue and White are the only two available.

The food is quite good and their selection of sandwiches and dips is substantial, plus the usual pub fare (poppers, pretzels, etc...). Try the spinach artichoke dip; it's a favorite.

The decor is about what you would expect for a college tavern, but with much nicer lighting and a cool display of empties behind the bar which inspired my own bottle collection. The bar is a good place to see the local life of Clemson as it is a magnet for townies as well as college kids. Dogs are welcome are are frequently seen roaming freely around the place.

Photo of SaCkErZ9
4.18/5  rDev -0.5%
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Went here on a Monday night in late April. I think the college crowd were immersed in exam studies because the prevailing and lingering talk intimated as much.

Very queit bar, no music, when I walked in. Servers greeted me immediately and were attentive throughout. There were only 10 others max at a time in the bar so I assume it was a slow night.

Had a turkey sandwich which was palattable; its hard to fuck up turkey, lettuce, tomato, provolone on rye with a pickle and chips.

Had two beers: Thomas Creek Extreme IPA, an IPA at 12.5% abv for $4; and a Delirium Tremens draft for $4. Awesome prices for what I assume was happy hour.

I would certaily revisit when in the area. I stellar pub. What atmoshphere lacked during my visit is surely to be upgraded during the regular "college season".

Photo of Epicedion
4.22/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Nick's is, simply put, the bar that got me into beer. Before Nick's I put forth the effort, I just didn't know any better. Guinness, Sam Adams, a few other big non-Budweiser beers.

But this bar seems almost intentionally designed to slowly draw you away from the big-label beers. First, the worst beer they usually have on tap is Amber Bock, Shiner Bock, Yuengling, or the like. For anything less you have to get a bottle. So you don't know any better, but you're adventurous. Let's try a Guinness on tap. Anchor Steam. Bass Pale Ale. Next thing you know you've had six pints from the taps, each of them different. Then you're asking someone behind the bar what they'd suggest next and they're handing you a bottle of Geary's Special Hampshire out of the cooler.

The bar itself is usually crowded. Table, booth, and bar space is pretty limited, with seating for maybe forty. So expect to get elbowed around a bit. Even though it's a college town, the staff polices their patrons pretty well. I've seen them turn away a pack of sorority girls at the door, due to previous bad experiences. The crowd ends up being mostly Clemson faculty, staff, and graduate students, as well as some locals from the surrounding area.

The bar food is good bar food. Anything from fried peppers to sandwiches, with a few twists thrown in. Everything is tasty and well-prepared, and nothing is overly expensive. Expect sandwiches in the $5-$7 range.

Overall, Nick's is a great place to be. It's got a little something for everyone. The beer selection is rich and varied enough to be interesting to even the snobbiest of snobs, yet ranges far enough to tempt anyone's palate. If you're in Clemson, be sure to stop at this little hole-in-the-wall bar just off the main drag, and you'll be happy you did.

Photo of scottyshades
4.2/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

If you are in Clemson, this will be the best beer bar that you will find. In fact, nothing else in Clemson (other than the Qwik Stop, which isn't a bar) comes close to the selection that Nick's has.

Not only is their beer menu organized and easy to read/find beers, but if you ask to try a beer, they will pour a nice 2-3oz sample for you to see if you want to purchase it. The wait staff is friendly and professional about the beers they serve, and will gladly help you find what you need.

The establishment itself is a small-medium bar with wood tables/floors, and it still smells a little smoky even though smoking was banned in the summer of 08 (dont ask me why it still smells smoky) but it just gives the place charm.

If you are a beer geek in Clemson, this is the only place to go and be satisfied, especially because it is pretty much on College Ave.

Photo of tresmonos
4.58/5  rDev +9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

For upstate SC, this is probably the best bar in miles. Very relaxed atmosphere, the best craft selection on tap and a great bottle selection. Last I knew they had a pkg. license so if you really enjoyed it and want to consume more, you can walk with it.

Bar food is great. Their reuben's are mustard based, but surprisingly delicious. It's a true beer bar. No booze.

Liberal crowd, but in a college town in upstate SC, that's a good thing if you want to be able to enjoy a good beer. My job situation yanked me away from detroit and I truly miss the gorgeous bars down-town hidden amongst the urban blight. This is my new regular place.

Photo of beer2day
4.83/5  rDev +15%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Nick's is the quintessential college pub. The sheer amount of breweriana in the place is staggering, considering its size. 18 taps serve a wide variety of tastes and styles - including a Guinness pour that is the best in the state. If by chance you cannot find what you are looking for in a draft, the 70+ bottles (and 3 cans) should be able to satisfy any beer snob's craving. The food is excellent pub fare. The staff is overall extremely knowledgeable about what they are pouring, and if not too busy, are always happy to make a suggestion and talk beer.

If you are in town, stop in. You will not regret it.

Kasteel Rouge still on tap!!!

Delerium Tremens and Nocturnum on tap!!! (9/15/09)

Sexual Chocolate on tap!!!! (2/27/10)

Nick's is one of the first accounts in SC for DFH! 90 Minute on tap (5/25/10)

Photo of BigBeerDrinker
4.95/5  rDev +17.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

This place is great...'found' it one summer day and the staff was knowledgeable and the beer was good. Happened back in during a football weekend and the crowd was thick and a fun time was had by all. Lots of beers...was told more than 65...which is great for such a small place and plenty of 'discount' beers for the poor college students. From what I understand they're limited by their size and the laws in SC but the beers that they have are great. The only downside was the smoking. Food was good and original - NOT the normal bar stuff!!
A true "Pub" experience in a true College Bar.

Photo of tigerdoc
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Nick's is my favorite bar at my alma mater. The atmoshere reminds me of an english pub, all hard wood bar with brass foot rest. The food is descent fries, burgers, sandwiches, etc. The service is great, the servers tend to know their beer but the owner (big guy with a beard) is definately a beer geek. The selection is probably the best in town with several beers from along the east coast that the owner brings back from yearly trips to breweries. Most beers are served in pint glasses but now that the cap has been popped in SC Nick's carries several belgians that are served in traditional goblet's. I would definately recommend stopping by if you are ever in Clemson.

Photo of MSchae1017
3.88/5  rDev -7.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3

Nick's Tavern is located right off of the main "downtown" drag on Sloan Street. It is often referred to as the "Alternative Bar" in Clemson, probably because it is not mobbed by hundreds of like minded college students looking to push the limits of their liver while "jamming" to some questionably talented no name band. Nick's on the other hand offers the chance to sit in a nice quiet bar atmosphere in either one of the few booths on the right hand side or maybe at the L-shaped bar to the left. Nick's atmosphere is dominated with wood whereas the floors, booths, tables, bar stools, the bar, and even the walls are primarily this material. The walls also have some carpeting on them along with various beer paraphernalia, some from our favorite BMC companies and others from some local craft breweries. All beers are served in a chilled pint glass if from the tap and if you order a bottle, you have to request a pint glass. The selection is not bad for the area and the biggest complaint would be the lack of Rogue which are available in Greenville. Nevertheless, you can purchase a Highland Oatmeal or a Harpoon IPA on tap and bottled beer includes various Terrapin, Duck Rabbit, and Highland among other usual suspect. The one oddity on the menu is that they always have Pabst cans for $1. The food is typical bar fare with wings, sandwiches, and like like. Nothing is overwhelmingly good but will satisfy a hungry stomach. The service is not bad either. The bartenders are always willing to talk. They are by no means experts but are seem willing to learn if you know a thing or two and can share with them. One note is that if you sit at a booth, you need to go to the bar if you want to order anything, but the bartenders will ask if you need anything once they see you with an empty glass. Additionally, there is a $10 minimum if you want to pay with your card. Overall, not a bad choice if you are heading to Clemson at some point and want a decent beer once night in a quiet atmosphere, just do not expect to be arriving at a place where beer is truly appreciated.

Photo of bobbyc881
4.55/5  rDev +8.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Nick's is a small bar tucked slightly off the main street of Clemson. They offer about a dozen different taps, with better selections than most of the Clemson bars. Among the taps you'll typically find Guinness, Anchor Steam, Frankiskaner, Sierra Nevada, Blue Moon, Harpoon IPA, and a few local breweries such as Foothills and Highland.
Edit***After SC beer law change: Nick's now carries Victory Hop Devil, Chimay, Sam Smith Imp Stout, Delirium Tremens, Oskar Blues, Magic Hat and others... Very nice selection that is constantly expanding.***

They stock a few dozen bottles as well. A nice selection compared to the macros that most Clemson bars keep on hand.

Food is not bad. Typical bar food: hamburgers, deep fried goodness, chips and fries. They also carry some items for the health conscience and vegetarians, such as hummus and pita, veggie burgers, tabouli, etc...

The atmosphere is one of the best in the area: bar stretches the length of the room with bar stools lined up all along it, and 6-8 booths so you can hear your friends talk. Lots of old postcards, beer bottles, flags and beer signs line the wall. A lot of bar history there. I believe it's the oldest bar in town, but I might be wrong about that. The buy-a-buddy a beer board is fun. Order a beer for a friend, and they can pick it up next time they're in.

EDIT: heavy rotation of great craft beers: Coast, Foothills, Terrapin, Thomas Creek, etc... Hands down the best bar in Clemson for good beer.

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Nick's Tavern & Deli in Clemson, SC
93 out of 100 based on 25 ratings.