Thursday, February 23, 2023

Runway Cafe - Restaurant Impossible Update

Photo - Robert Irvine Facebook

On this week's episode of Restaurant: Impossible, Robert Irvine and his crew are in Greenville, South Carolina to makeover Runway Cafe. Runway Cafe is an airport cafe located in Greenville Downtown Airport. The owners Mike and Lem think a nearby playground with too many kids is driving away customers. Robert will need to figure out the real problems of the restaurant so it does not become a failure.

As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about Runway Cafe to get an idea of how the restaurant is doing since Robert Irvine visited, and here is what I found (note - all reviews are post Restaurant: Impossible):

Positive Reviews:
  • "Loved the new makeover. Show airs in February of 2023 I believe. Food was delicious. Service was great. Owner came to chat with us. Loved flying in, pulling into a slip and walking inside the restaurant to eat. Great park & Putt Putt course on the property with a Military Museum across the road. Great family spot. Great for pilots and flying families."
  • "Had lunch today. Although I’ve always liked the place before, this time it was significantly better. The sandwiches were much fresher and the quick service, even though they were slammed with business, was great! The lady managing things at the counter was outstanding."
  • "Really friendly staff, great burgers, and being able to watch planes take off while you eat is fun. We love coming here!"
  • "First time here today. It was crazy busy, probably because it was a day that it didn’t rain. The food was hot, juicy, delicious! Our burger patty was very thick and cooked perfectly! The fries were some of the best I’ve ever had! The staff were all friendly and smiley and quick to clean tables inside and out! We definitely will be back! Oh… and the planes were really cool to watch also!! Kid-friendliness: It was cute to see the kids watch the planes with wide eyes!!"
  • "Our servers, Debbie and Steph, were excellent! They were super friendly and our food came quickly — they were also super accommodating. I’ve never eaten anything here I haven’t loved! But the white chicken chili I had today was especially good — perfectly seasoned with a side of homemade tortilla chips. Runway Cafe has an amazing atmosphere and is hands down my favorite place to eat in Greenville and I could not recommend it more! 10/10"
  • "Love great food, friendly staff and anything to do with aviation? Then Runway Cafe is your place. Been a regular customer for over 10 years and now it is even better with recent upgrades. Go check it out. You will not be disappointed."

Negative Reviews:
  • "Service 0 stars!!! I took my kids here to eat and play since the playground is right next to this caffee. We were greeted at the entrance, but as soon as my son touched their plastic airplane, which was placed by the register where we tried to order the food, I started to change my mind about giving these people my financial support with ordering food here. Do not bring in any toys with you to this caffee to try to keep your child busy while you eat. Their toys are not allowed to be touched, and kids are not allowed to play with their own toys either. We were told 3 times to wait a little longer while this lady left the register to serve everybody else. When she came back, she asked for my son not to play with his firetruck inside the restaurant. I guess it was the safety issue. So after waiting 6 minutes, at the register we decided to leave."
*Reviews from Yelp, Google

Other News and Links:
  • The Restaurant Impossible makeover for Runway Cafe happened in October 2022.
  • Here is the Runway Cafe website and Facebook page.
  • The restaurant is promoting their appearance on Restaurant Impossible and say they are excited about the episode. (Link)
  • They also posted about the episode, "I believe Restaurant Impossible chose our place due to our unique situation. We began as a business lunch casual type restaurant and had to evolve into a restaurant adjacent to a park filled with families. We love all of our customers but sometimes it’s a difficult balance to keep everyone happy. This is the challenge that piqued the interest of Chef Irvine and the RI crew. We are so grateful for the experience. We will always be learning but they provided a road map." (Link)
  • Runway Cafe is open 7 days a week for lunch from 11am to 2:30pm.  They mentioned they were planning on opening for dinner and it appears they offer reservations for Friday and Saturday nights.
  • Here are the reviews for Runway Cafe from Yelp, TripAdvisor, and Google.
    • The restaurant responds to the reviews on Google.


The reviews for Runway Cafe since the Restaurant Impossible visit are mostly positive with people liking the atmosphere, service and food. With the location near a playground a lot of reviews do mention children.  The restaurant seems happy with the experience on the show and it looks like they have expanded their hours to offer dinner two nights a week.

*Visit Our Restaurant Impossible Update Page to see all Restaurant: Impossible updates, and which restaurants are open, closed, or have been sold. Also Follow Us on Twitter

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