In 2015, after just one year at the helm of the kitchen of the Vista’s Motor Supply Co. Bistro, Wes Fulmer led the farm-to-table bistro to garner all three major local readers’ choice awards for “Best Restaurant.”
A Prosperity native, Fulmer honed his craft in the James Beard Award-winning kitchens of celebrity chefs John Besh (Restaurant August, New Orleans) and Susanna Foo (Susanna Foo, Philadelphia) and then served as sous chef at the luxe Atlantic Room at the Kiawah Island Golf Resort.
In pring 2015, Fulmer was selected as the sole chef for DiscoverSC’s biannual media event in New York City, and that fall, he was featured in a segment of the Travel Channel UK television show, “Jeni and Olly’s Deep South Food Adventures.”
Fulmer lives in Forest Acres with his wife and their two young children.
EAT: I want to preface this by saying I have an infant and a toddler, so when I’m not working at Motor Supply or spending time with my family, I don’t get out that much. But when I do, I like to get a sense of what cool things other chefs are doing in Columbia. I’ll often visit Mike Davis at Terra and Todd Woods at Oak Table to see what they’re up to. I like checking in with Blake Faries at Sea & Salt across the street. He’s doing this popup thing where he customizes the menu to the table. It’s like eating at Blake’s house; it’s really cool. Anytime I’m thinking burgers, I think of Rush’s or Zesto – that’s where I’m going when I want to get down and greasy. A classic favorite of mine is Cannon’s BBQ in Little Mountain, right around where I’m originally from. It’s owned by a guy with whom I went to church. He has some great hash and smoked barbecue pork. Also, I love Camon – all the time, any time I want sushi. The experience there is really personable.
DRINK: If I’m going to grab a really good bourbon, I go to Morganelli’s. They’re great people, and they help you out a lot. As far as going out to grab a drink, I’ll pop in to Oyster Bar and get a Basil Hayden on the rocks. The Medusa Stout at Conquest Brewery is one of my favorite beers. I also love a Westbrook White Thai. I think it’s cool that David Chang at Momofuku (in New York City) has it on tap.
PLAY: It’s always fun to take the kids out to the park; Columbia has some great public and neighborhood parks to enjoy. Riverbanks Zoo is always a great option. My 3-year-old loves the giraffes, and you learn something new every time you go. I also enjoy taking the kids to EdVenture. We’re also looking forward to the State Fair. My oldest is getting to the age where he’ll be all up into that this year.
SEE: I’m a Carolina fan, so we love watching the Gamecocks play. And I love Soda City market. It’s key for Saturday morning family time. We usually grab something from Heather’s Bread, Wil-Moore Farms and goat cheese from Trail Ridge Farms, all of which we serve at Motor Supply. Paul Grant (from Freshly Grown Farms) is always up there with some great lettuce, which we always have here at the restaurant too. With my pre-culinary school background in historic preservation, I really enjoy some of the signature events that Historic Columbia puts on, like the garden symposium. This past year, I got to work with USC heirloom food historian David Shields and cooked a menu of historical Midlands dishes for his talk. I also enjoy just walking around the Vista to see everything that’s going on; it’s grown so much in the three years I’ve been with Motor Supply.
LISTEN: Music Farm consistently has some really great shows – Jason Isbell is the last show we saw up there. The Township is a great venue to watch a show, too. Widespread Panic sounds so good there; we had a great time when they came through. I always love the Rosewood Crawfish Festival. It’s very unique, and in an up-and-coming artsy neighborhood like Rosewood, it’s always a fun time, no matter who’s playing.