Tupelo is back. After closing its doors in May 2020 during the early months of the coronavirus pandemic, the restaurant has reopened in a new location with a revised menu, but it retains the creative philosophy focused on local ingredients and southern hospitality that made it a Park City favorite. Partners Maggie Alvarez and Chef Matt Harris had been waiting for the right opportunity to relaunch Tupelo even as the pair maintained a presence in the community with their other restaurants RIME at the St. Regis Deer Valley, RIME Raw Bar at the top of the Jordanelle Gondola and Afterword in downtown Heber.
Tupelo’s new site is at 1500 Kearns Blvd in Prospector, a departure from the restaurant’s prior Main Street location that will nevertheless better serve local diners in addition to area visitors. Alvarez and Harris jumped at the opportunity to reestablish a community presence in what they saw as the ideal spot, which had for nearly five decades been home to Adolph’s restaurant.
After extensive remodeling of the space, Tupelo began serving hungry Parkites just before the new year. The menu features some favorites carried over from Tupelo’s inception, like the Idaho Trout and, of course, the famed buttermilk biscuits with butter honey. Those selections are accompanied by innovative new dishes that escape the meat and potatoes cliché of mountain fare such as the vegan-friendly grilled cauliflower steak with herb-chili pesto.
Amid the restaurant’s reimagining, Tupelo remains tied to its founding principles. Harris moved to Park City from Georgia in 2008, bringing with him southern roots that influence both Tupelo’s diverse cuisine offerings as well as the restaurant’s warm atmosphere. The founding duo has also remained committed to a sustainable ethos at Tupelo, partnering with local artisanal food producers and utilizing ingredients from their own micro-farm located in Midway, which cultivates seed-grown heirloom varietals of tomatoes, squash, Swiss Chard, arugula, spinach, cucumbers and rhubarb used in the restaurant’s dishes. The resulting farm-to-table experience is one that not only delivers exceptional food but also supports multiple facets of the larger community along the Wasatch Back.
As Park City begins to emerge from the two-year haze, a local institution is reborn in the very spot a longtime institution was shuttered. Tupelos’ creative fare and cocktails—the restaurant won the highly competitive Park City Cocktail Contest a few years back—bring a refreshingly diverse take on the mountain town dining scene. Harris, Alvarez and Tupelo were never really gone, but we couldn’t be happier to see them back.
1500 Kearns Blvd, 435-292-0888, tupeloparkcity.com
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