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Rock Hill welcomes Kounter, serving up history and interactive dining

Come November, you’ll be able to reserve your spot at the historic counter pictured here for an interactive dining experience brought to you by Rock Hill native Chef Rob Masone. You may have experienced his innovative dishes as he also owns Kre8 Twisted Eats located at Wooden Robot Brewery, Hoppin', and Pinhouse as well as Kre8 Catering, in addition to two restaurants in Florida.

The new restaurant Kounter will be on Rock Hill’s Main St. where McCrory’s Five & Dine was.

The “kounter” you see pictured here is the same one from McCrory’s where a historically important sit-in by the Friendship 9 took place. On Jan. 31, 1961, 10 Black students from Friendship Jr. College were arrested when they refused to leave. One paid the $100 fine, but the other 9 wouldn’t pay and became the first sit-in protestors to serve jail time. This began the “Jail No Bail” strategy that was adopted by Civil Rights activists nationwide.

Chef Rob and his team are transforming the historic spot inside and out but preserving history by keeping the original counter and bar stools from McCrory’s with several odes to the Friendship 9. They’re also renovating the well-known Palmetto Room in the back to serve as event space (he's already cooking up some FUN ideas!).

The small-plates menu will focus on “familiar food with a twist” -- think chicken & waffles sushi, cotton candy wrapped shrimp, and smoked cocktails. Dishes will be very Instagram worthy, so much that their hashtag is #phoneseatfirst -- because isn't that the truth?

You'll be able to make reservations at the Kounter, where you'll enjoy an interactive and genuinely unique dining experience. There will be additional seating in the restaurant but maybe not as "interactive" as the experience at the counter.

From the glassware, woodwork with Friendship 9 names engraved, the original counter and stools, to the striking red refrigerator, know that every single detail has been thoroughly thought out.

Chef Rob is excited to return to his hometown to open an eclectic restaurant full of history and unforgettable experiences. His creativity and energy are contagious and we're excited to welcome him back to York County!

NOW HIRING: All FOH + BOH Positions. Email resume to


135 E Main St. Rock Hill, SC 29730

Instagram: @kounterdining


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