“It’s Eric’s menu,” says Mark Munoz, general manager of Crossbones Tavern, located at 114 East Fifth Street in Uptown Greenville. “He’s the mastermind behind it all.”
Mark, his brother David and Chef Eric Pooley make up the core team behind the restaurant. Each brings his own experience to the table — Mark has worked at both chain and local restaurants, including Chef and the Farmer in Kinston, David brings a business background, and Eric has a knack for creating unique menus.
Together, they have sought to create a comfortable tavern feel with live music, a contemporary Southern menu and a full bar serving domestic, imported and craft beer to Uptown Greenville. Since opening in February 2015, Mark says, the menu has been crafted to reflect the tastes of the restaurant’s customers.
“Some of the things that we’ve added cater to feedback from the customers, like the barbecue sandwich,” he says. “Some are featured items that Pooley has made that got good feedback.”
Favorites include a fried pork chop with Dijonnaise sauce, roasted potatoes and a fried egg; shrimp and grits; and a pimento cheeseburger. There is also a Cuban sandwich and a skirt steak with chimichurri sauce. The savory scents vented from the smoker are like a tractor beam for nearby residents and passersby.
The combination of students, professionals and families make Uptown Greenville a great place for food and entertainment, Mark adds. “I love Uptown. I think the community leaders here have really seen what needs to happen and have tried to tackle that. For us, it’s a great opportunity to get involved and be part of that change.”
With live music on Friday and Saturday nights, as well as open mic and trivia nights, he says he wants Crossbones to be a destination for not only nearby residents, but for customers from Winterville, Farmville and Washington to come and hear talented local artists.
“We want to give aspiring musicians a chance to show off their talents and get them more exposure,” he says. “It’s important for us, both for the business and for the community.”
The Munoz brothers decided to call Greenville home after growing up in Kinston. Mark says a brief stint at Chef and the Farmer gave him an appreciation for the importance of teamwork. “Everybody wanted to help each other out because they knew, overall, the bigger picture was the customer experience. That’s something we’ve tried to implement here.”
Chef Pooley’s talent and experience helps with that, he adds. “He’s somebody that we had complete faith in, and he has taken it by the horns. We want him to have the autonomy to work with what he’s comfortable doing, and to add his own original twists.”
Pooley is a hands-on leader in the kitchen, working six and sometimes seven days a week to make sure everything coming out is of a consistently high quality.
For lunch, dinner or a night of music, Crossbones Tavern offers a Southern Pirate-themed atmosphere with good food and service in the heart of Uptown Greenville.
An event calendar, menu and operating hours can be found at crossbonestavern.com or by calling 252.689.6199.