In the middle of nowhere South Carolina sits a beautiful little college town called Clem-p-son; there’s a loud “p” in that word. Now technically the town is spelled Clemson, I simply gave you the phonetic spelling because I am an equal opportunist for letters, silent or loud. Understand that there are easier Chi Psi towns to find than Clemson. It’s not easy to find on your map, and I wouldn’t count on your GPS knowing the backroads leading in to town either. And, once you get into town and you’re craving a burger, Mac’s is the only place you should go… if you can find it.
Mac’s Drive In maybe harder to find in Clemson than the “p” is, but if you do find it you are in for a little slice of orange and purple heaven, a true tiger treat.
Mac’s Drive In was started in 1956 by Dan. No I’m not kidding, Dan. Of course at that time it was called Dan’s Diner. Harold “Mac” Mckowen worked his way through college flipping burgers at Dan’s Diner. Mac started working there because he lost his wallet one night at a drive-in movie. Dan sold the Diner to Mac in 1956 and so Mac’s Diner was born. The current building was built in 1965 and still stands today.
Walking into to Mac’s is almost like stepping back in time. The décor, I’m sure, hasn’t changed in 40 years, and on the wall are pictures of Clemson greats. Football stars, Congressmen, even ESPN analysts have all eaten there, and most of their pictures are one the wall.
Sweet tea of course, maybe the best sweet tea I have ever had. Plus you are in the south, so when in Rome.
Double Cheeseburger plate, and I advise you to not get too complicated with your order by adding arbitrary toppings you might enjoy like mustard or slaw; the sweet old grey-haired lady taking my order was feisty.
If, by the grace of God you ever make it to Clem(p)son, you must go in the Fall during a home football game, you must find and eat at Mac’s Drive In, and you must pronounce the “P”.