Rizer’s Pork and Produce buffet and produce stand in Colleton County is surrounded by the fields from which the food they sell grows.
“Anything you can possibly want, we can provide that for you,” said Victoria Rizer, the next generation of Rizers to work the family land. “It’s all fresh. As fresh as you can possibly get it.”
And since the fields are right there, you can’t get more fresh than that. As soon as it’s picked, the produce is either cooked or up for sale.
“We do seasonal vegetables here so we grow butterbeans, corn, watermelons — you name it, we got it,” Rizer said. If you grow your own beans but don’t want to bother with shelling them, Rizers can do that for you.
In addition to the produce, Rizers also provides pork products from the hogs they raise.
“They’re happy pigs,” Rizer said. “We keep everything as sanitary as we can. They’re very happy. They kind of do their own thing, live their own life. We just let them do it and I think that’s really important.”
All the pork and produce the Rizers raise goes on the all-you-can-eat buffet.
“Barbecue ribs, chicken, pork chops, fatback,” she said. “On Fridays and Saturdays we’ll do fish and shrimp, fried fish and shrimp, people love to do that.”
The menu varies depending on what’s available for the season. Sometimes it includes hash and barbecue over rice, fresh seasonal vegetables, sausage, grits, desserts, and the labor-intensive creamed corn.
“It takes a lot of work — I know!” Rizer said.
There’s also grandma’s secret recipe macaroni and cheese.
“My grandmother’s recipe for macaroni and cheese. It’s secret. It stays with us. Very, very good,” Rizer said. “Everything on the buffet comes from South Carolina.”
Rizers is one of many agritourism spots on the Certified SC Grown Agritourism Passport program. Rizer says she’s impressed with the number of people who stop to get their passports stamped.
“People are wanting to know about local-grown foods and I think it’s great South Carolina has the Certified SC program” she said. “Let you see where your food is coming from. Let you know that, yeah, these small farms are where you’re needing to get your produce. It’s great for your local community, it’s great for your farmers. It’s great for you, too because knowing where your food’s from is what it’s about.”
“You’ve got these local producers in your area that can tell you what you need to know to answer all your questions,” she said.
And while you’re on your way to Rizer’s, enjoy the ride and a step back in time in nearby Erhardt.
“There is this little 5 and dime there and you just walk in and it takes you back, I mean, it takes you all the way back to when 5 and dimes were THE thing to do,” Rizer described Mr. Jessie’s 5 and 10-cent store in Erhardt with its original tin ceiling. “You can find anything there. Even if it was from maybe a while back ago, it’s still there.”
Rizer also recommended the Ehrardt Pharmacy.
“They have a sweet little ice cream counter there and all of these sweet little gifts. Just about anything that you could imagine.”
And, of course, there’s entertainment in watching the working farmers along the way.
“You’re seeing working fields. You’re seeing farmers on their tractors. You’re seeing workers picking whatever. You’re really getting the experience of being out in the country and seeing what really goes on,” Rizer said.
And to the curious, no question is too dumb.
“Ask us anything. Ask questions. We love it. We don’t mind. At all,” she said. “People come in here all the time and ask us, ‘Well what’s going on down there in that field?'”
The buffet and produce stand are on Confederate Highway near Lodge.
For more information on other working farms you can visit in South Carolina, click here.