Food & Drink

This Beaufort BBQ staple has closed after several years in the heart of downtown

Sgt. White’s Restaurant closed in September after decades of serving pit-cooked BBQ in Beaufort.
Sgt. White’s Restaurant closed in September after decades of serving pit-cooked BBQ in Beaufort. Caitlin Turner - Beaufort Gazette

A Beaufort BBQ staple restaurant has closed its doors after decades of serving up soul food from the heart of the city.

Sgt. White’s Restaurant closed last month, according to Gladys Chapman, who owns the building.

On Friday morning, you could still smell the BBQ inside the restaurant previously owned by Ron White, who went by “Sarge,” according to Beaufort Gazette records.

The restaurant sat at the corner of Boundary Street and Ribaut Road with a sign out front reading “Sgt. White’s Real Pit Cooked B.B.Q.” The spot served up pulled pork and other specialties along with Marine Corps decor.

Attempts to contact White were not successful Friday.

In 2007, White put the restaurant up for sale citing health problems, according to a Gazette article.

“I dreamt about this place,” White said in 2007 about the building that formerly housed a T-shirt shop before he started leasing it. “I dreamed about ribs and potato salad and this town.”

He told a reporter then that he had moved the restaurant from Grays Hill 21 years prior. He had come to the Lowcountry more than 25 years ago when he became a mess cook and later a drill instructor on Parris Island.

When he put the business up for sale then, White said he wanted to sell only to a person who loved to cook.

Chapman said Friday that she hopes to lease the building to someone who wants to sell BBQ like White.

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