Food & Drink

This Philadelphia-inspired cafe in Murrells Inlet is small in size, big in character

For The Sun News

Walking into an establishment to be greeted by big grins and fresh baked goods feels more like coming home than going out to eat. In Murrells Inlet behind the mall, Vinny’s Café is tucked in the end of the Planters Market shopping strip and has been happily serving breakfast and lunch to area residents for two and a half years.

Compact in size but big in character, Vinny’s Café has become known to locals for the good eats and affordable prices, and also for the man himself. Like so many others in the area, Vinny hails from Philadelphia and has brought a bit of it with him. Fans of scrapple and cheesesteaks have been coming to the cafe since its inception, although these are just some of the treats Vinny has to offer.

Morning is a particularly popular time for the eatery, as many guests come for a plate of the daily $3.99 breakfast deal. The restaurant also has meal specials that change from day to day, and can include Vinny’s beloved Philly cheesesteak omelet, or the scrumptious raisin bread French toast.

Other regulars drop by early in the day in order to snatch up their own part of the bakery haul. The baked goods here include but are not limited to cinnamon rolls, muffins, cinnamon raisin bread and turnovers. It would be remiss if pastries weren’t a part of the experience here, and the café doesn’t disappoint with its cannolis, pizzelles, and other array of pies, cakes and cookies.

When breakfast ends at 11 a.m. (or until closing on Saturdays), hungry customers begin clamoring for lunch, which shares similar characteristics to breakfast. There is a menu listing the many subs, all of which come served on an Italian roll and with chips as a side. The menu also has a few pastas to choose from and include a side salad and slice of garlic bread. Daily specials keep customers guessing, with one day serving lasagna while the next has chicken parmesan.

As a small restaurant preparing its baked goods and specials freshly, there is also a limited amount, which means occasionally an item will run out. On the other end, the business’s size also makes it easier for the owner and main chef himself to visit guests on the floor, and as such many regulars are, naturally, on a first-name basis with him.

Size isn’t everything, and a little can go a long way. The team at Vinny’s Cafe is dedicated to offering friendly service to whoever walks through the door, plus providing the best food they can. A part of southern Philadelphia he may be, but Vinny has certainly made a home here in South Carolina’s seafood capitol.

If you go

What: Vinny’s Café

Where: 804 Inlet Square Drive, Murrells Inlet

Hours: 7:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. Tue-Fri, 7:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. Sat

Information:, 843-357-0532