When I called Workmen's Cafe on Grimball Road, I did not have to leave a message for the owner. That's because the self-described "one woman show," Angie Bellinger, picked up the phone. We sat down to chat briefly at 2pm: at least I sat down. Angie rang up the remaining customers and pointed the repairmen in the right direction in between answering my questions.
You won't find downtown tourists in this humble James Island establishment, but you will find the pride of 20 years of ownership and a blue collar crowd that appreciates the value and simplicity of homemade fried chicken and lima beans on par with anything downtown has to offer. On Wednesday and Friday, Angie even brings BBQ ribs to the menu.
If you've never made it to Workmen's Cafe, you deserve to experience the heart and soul of Angie Bellinger, in an establishment that epitomizes the hard work of our community.
Find below our conversation:
Tell us how Workmen’s Café came into being?
It was my mother’s idea, who passed away in 2004. We opened in 2001. When my mom came up with the idea I was living in Ohio. It took me 6 months to move home. My mom always said she was blessed with 8 beautiful children. I was the last but we were always very close.
Why did you pick this spot and James Island in general?
We live here. My mom grew up on James Island and this was her family’s property.
What makes Workmen’s special?
Our customers! We serve mainly blue-collar workers. This was my mom’s idea – to feed the working man.
What is your favorite menu item?
My BBQ ribs! The sauce is house made. They are available on Wednesday and Friday.
Are there any specials neighbors should know about?
Yes, I make a menu each week with daily specials. It is posted on our FB page.