Your guide to the best delis in Columbia, SC
This guide to the best delis in Columbia shares everything from where to get the best Reuben, our favorite NY style sandwich and the best place to grab chicken salad to go.
In building out this guide on where to find great sandwiches in Columbia, we focused on classic delis and restaurants primarily dedicated to sandwiches, though we also included a few that have more than sandwiches on the menu.
Wherever you end up, expect delicious sandwiches and get ready to give a rave review!
Where To Get A Deli Sandwich in COlumbia, SC
Your guide to the best delis in Columbia, SC
Below you’ll find our roundup of awesome sandwich shops in Columbia. Most are local to the area and all have a great selection of sandwiches. Many also features salads, soups and their own special sauces.
Casual eatery known for classic deli sandwiches and laid back atmosphere
Groucho’s Deli is one of our favorite lunch spots in Columbia. Their original location in Five Points has been serving up their iconic dipper-style subs since 1941.
The secret sauce (no pun intended) that keeps us coming back is their Formula 45 dipping sauce. It is THE. BEST. SAUCE. served at any deli we have ever been to! (Our friend who live out of town have tried to recreate the sauce with marginal success.)
Groucho’s dipper-style subs are served on hoagie sub rolls with top-quality deli meat and cheese melted on top. We love their classic Apollo dipper, but all are great! Their sandwiches are served in baskets with a bag of chips and a pickle on the side.
Groucho’s delis are great spots to hang out with families and friends. Their restaurants are always buzzing and booths, often full of happy customers catching up over delicious lunch.
Since opening their original Five Points location they have added seven additional locations in the Midlands and have a total of 25 locations in South Carolina. No matter where you are in Columbia, there’s probably a Groucho’s nearby.
Classic old-school deli located in Five Points with great food and even friendlier people
Andy’s Deli is a hometown favorite sandwich shop and deli in Columbia’s Five Points. Not much has changed at Andy’s since opening in 1978, which is a good thing because they make an excellent deli sandwich and their staff is extremely friendly. Everyone is treated like a regular at Andy’s.
The crowd favorite sandwich is the Andy’s Special. It’s a roast beef and turkey sandwich with melted Swiss cheese and bacon bits. It comes on a sub roll with their irresistible special sauce on the side. Choose a bag of chips and enjoy!
Located in the heart of Five Points, it’s easy to stop in for a great lunch at Andy’s while meandering around the shopping district. If you want to know more about the area, check out our full guide to Five Points!
A note on parking: One perk of Andy’s is their large parking lot in Five Points. But don’t try to leave your car there and skip eating at Andy’s. They do let you pay for spots, though, if you plan on wandering around after.
Classic deli in Rosewood with an extensive sandwich menu
Tucked away on Rosewood Drive between Shandon and Rosewood neighborhoods, 5th Avenue Deli is a favorite lunch spot for locals. With a huge selection of sandwiches named after local streets, there is something for everyone.
5th Avenue Deli in Rosewood is clean and bright. It can get crowded during the lunch rush, but there is always a friendly buzz filling the room. You can tell it’s where the locals love to eat!
It’s kind of tucked away even though it’s right on Rosewood. It’s next door to As Well As, which is featured on our best coffee shops in Columbia list!
For pastrami lovers we can highly recommend the Monroe — we also love the Edisto (Roast beef and pimento cheese.)
Great sandwiches and sweet treats
Don’t let the sweet name fool you, Devine Cinnamon Roll is one of Columbia’s top-rated lunch restaurants! We can’t get enough of their pick two combo, where you can choose from a sandwich, cup of soup, hot dog, salad, panini, cup of chili or nachos.
Cinnamon Roll Deli has a menu full of specialty sandwiches. We love the CRD Cuban and the Italian Godfather. They also have a selection of mouthwatering hotdogs with fun toppings. Oh and make sure you grab one of their cinnamon rolls (it’s in the name after all)!
Not only is it great for lunch, but it’s also an excellent spot for breakfast in Columbia. And it’s served all day! We absolutely love The Big Max (eggs, cheese, bacon, mustard) on sourdough. For lunch, get the Italian Godfather! And a cinnamon roll, of course.
The Devine Cinnamon Roll Deli is located on Devine Street just up the road from Five Points. They have a bright clean dining room inside as well as nice outdoor seating out front.
Cafeteria-style deli with great sandwiches, sides and salads
The iconic No Name Deli has quietly been serving epic deli sandwiches since 1981. You order at a classic cafeteria-style deli counter and watch them make your deli order right in front of you. They are located a bit off the beaten path at the corner of Elmwood Ave. and Marion St. near Cottontown.
The no-frills atmosphere gives you an authentic deli feel where you know they take the food seriously. We love the Reuben and it definitely goes at the top of our list for best Reuben sandwiches in Columbia.
No Name Deli is a favorite lunch spot for locals in Columbia, but make sure you go on a weekday as they are closed on Saturdays and Sundays.
Our go-to order: Turkey Club and a Greek Salad!! We also love their Reuben sandwich (the best in Columbia!)
Delightful deli in downtown Columbia’s Arcade Mall
Swanson’s is a great deli tucked in the Arcade Mall in downtown Columbia. It’s only open for lunch on weekdays (11-2:30), so if you blink you’ll miss them!
Swanson’s is an ideal stop if you work downtown and want a great sandwich. All of their sandwiches are awesome, but we especially love the Bob Special (roast beef, turkey, with melted Swiss, bacon bits, on a toasted hoagie, with a side of homemade Russian dressing) and their chicken salad club sandwich.
Takeout only NY style deli sandwiches
Enzo’s is the place to go for authentic NY style sandwiches in Columbia. You’ll also find from scratch Italian desserts as well as an Italian marketplace!
Enzo’s opened their first Columbia location in 2021 and quickly became a top deli in our book.
They have both cold and hot NY style sandwiches on the menu. If you are looking for a hot chicken cutlet sandwich, head to Enzo’s immediately!
We can’t get enough of their chicken parm with marinara sauce, mozzerella and pecorino romano. Their Hugo (chicken cutlets, swiss, lettuce, tomato and mayo) and cold Italian sandwich are also awesome.
Apart from sandwiches, Enzo’s also has a marketplace full of pantry goods imported from Italy. You’ll find olive oil, pasta, cheese, olives, pancetta and even Italian butter. Enzo’s also has Italian desserts (cannoli and black & white cookies!) and beer and wine.
Enzo’s opened a second location in Olympia Mills called Enzo’s Spuntino. The menu is a bit different and includes breakfast!
If you are familiar with Five Points, Enzo’s is located in the old Blue Cactus space.
near Five Points
Cafe and deli near USC with locally loved pimento cheese
DiPrato’s is one of the best lunch spots in Columbia, SC and a favorite meeting spot for locals to catch up. They serve all the classic deli sandwiches as well as delicious pimento cheese (you have to try their hot pita chips with their pimento cheese dip!)
DiPrato’s is located on the south end of downtown Columbia on Pickens Street near the UofSC campus. They have a kids menu with grilled cheese and chicken nuggets, so it’s sure to please everyone in your group!
You can also order salads and snacks by the pound from their deli case. Make sure to check them out for brunch on Saturdays and Sundays. Speaking of, check our ultimate guide to brunch in Columbia for more ideas!
Sandwich shop in downtown Columbia with great combinations
Sound Bites Eatery is a great place to grab a bite when near downtown Columbia. If you can get past the punny names, you’ll probably see a ton of Sound Bites’ menu that you’ll want to try. You’ll find hot sandwiches, cold sandwiches, and fun sides like pistachio pasta salad and marinated tomato salad.
We especially love the Stop Hammy Time sandwich (Black forest ham, Havarti cheese, rosemary dijonaise, sweet red pepper spread and ciabatta.) And they call them soundwiches, by the way…
They also have grilled poblano cheese, which is their version of pimento cheese. It’s made with sharp white cheddar and is delicious! Our kids especially love Violet’s French Toast– it’s filled with blueberry cream cheese.
Sound Bites is located near several offices downtown and it can get quite busy during the lunchtime rush.
Five Points sidewalk cafe with great sandwiches
Gourmet Shop is a cute cafe with great food located near a ton of local shops. It’s a go-to spot for lunch out with friends and perfect for USC parents.
We initially debated adding The Gourmet Shop to our best delis list (it’s more of a cafe…), but then we realized we’d be crazy not to! They have great sandwiches as well as an area for to-go pimento cheese, chicken salad and charcuterie meats and cheeses.
Gourmet Shop is great for dining in. You’ll feel like you are at a French bistro, especially if you can snag a table outside. This is a popular spot for parents to take their UofSC students for a nicer lunch out. It’s also a great brunch spot in Columbia.
If you just need something quick, hop over to their deli counter to grab a container of chicken salad, pasta salad and a baguette. It’s a stellar picnic combo! And then head to one of the many parks we have listed on our best playgrounds in Columbia, SC list.
Gourmet deli sandwiches in a casual, relaxed atmosphere
Crave is such a great place for a deli sandwich in Columbia! It feels like a hidden gem, but it’s right on Millwood Road which gives you quick access to Gervais Street. Crave is the perfect destination to walk to if you are in the Melrose Heights neighborhood.
Seating at Crave is very casual and feels like a true cafe deli. There’s a small marketplace with tons of local SC brands.
They also make awesome tomato pies when in season and you can’t miss the peanut butter pie!
Our go-to order is the Devine Street sandwich (turkey, goat cheese, fig + onion + rosemary jam) and the Green Goddess Salad.
We love ordering online and bringing our sandwiches for a picnic. Crave is a great stop before heading to one of the many playgrounds in Columbia, like Sims Park in Shandon or Heathwood Park in Heathwood.
A beloved hidden gem eatery tucked in a neighborhood near Trenholm Park
The Other Store is a mom & pop deli tucked away in Forest Acres. You’ll find a convenience store up front and a deli in the back. You won’t find the most gourmet sandwiches in Columbia (head to somewhere like Crave for that!), but it’s an old school shop with regulars who love it.
We love the Greek Turkey Sandwich. And don’t miss the caramel cake! You’ll find it by the slice if you are lucky or you can order a caramel cake for pickup with a few days’ notice.
Charleston-founded deli with sandwiches, salads, hot dogs, soups and sides
East Bay Deli is a Charleston-founded deli with sandwiches, salads, hot dogs, soups and sides. They also serve a daily breakfast at their downtown Columbia location on Main Street.
They have a great variety on the menu so you are sure to find something for everyone. One of our favorite sandwiches is the Club Calhoun with turkey and pastrami.
You’ll find several East Bay Deli locations around Columbia. They offer online ordering which is always a bonus. Speaking of, their Cayce location is close to a great playground in Cayce (Guignard Park) and the two make for an excellent day out.