Elevation Bistro & Catering Company is an intimate and inviting restaurant located in the heart of Mentone.

The menu offers locally and regionally sourced ingredients from places like Jones Farm in Valley Head and Mentone suppliers such as The Farm at Windy Hill, Mildred’s Meadows and Mountain Sun Farms. Owner, Kevin Dunlap said, “Eighty-five percent of our menu is sourced regionally.”

Dunlap is co-owner with Drew Smith, Barry Morton and Lynna Meadows-Morton. Dunlap is not only one of the owners of the restaurant, but also doubles as the chef. He has 25 plus years in the industry and loves creating food choices that are not readily available locally.

The menu at Elevation changes weekly, which is an expected feature of a restaurant that has a chef versus a cook. The menu commonly presents two or three appetizers, two salads, a soup, a seafood selection, a protein entrée and a vegan option.

Dunlap did take culinary courses, but said he has found most of his training came through hands-on experience on the job. “I was in love with the restaurant business right from the start,” said Dunlap.

“One of the favorites of our customers is the seafood program we offer,” said Dunlap. “My seafood broker can have it go from the water on Wednesday to arriving here at the restaurant on Thursday.” Sort of a pole-to-plate comparable to farm-to-table offering.

The food at Elevation is typically described as high-end comfort food. Dunlap said the goal is to create dishes with “clean ingredients.” Much of the menu can be enjoyed by those who choose to eat gluten-free.

Due to current pandemic restrictions, seating is limited both inside and out and reservations are highly recommended. Future plans, perhaps in the spring, include adding entertainment and a U.V. shade over part of the outside seating area. Alcoholic beverages will soon be a menu item.

Dunlap said he has an excellent staff and truly appreciates their hard work in making the business the success it is. Dunlap said his staff works diligently to make things as safe as possible during this time of pandemic. Take-out and curbside takeout are options for those who do not wish to dine on premises.

Elevation Bistro & Catering Company can be found on Facebook and Instagram. Located at 5951 Al. 117. Business hours are Friday - Sunday 4:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday lunch from 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. Phone 256-634-3001.

— Marla Ballard’s Spotlight on Business appears in the Times-Journal weekend edition.

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