BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - For the first time in almost 30 years, people on the Mississippi Gulf Coast can once again enjoy dining at an iconic Biloxi restaurant, White Pillars.
Tuesday night, Cathy Pittman was the first customer walk through the doors and help begin a new chapter in this building's storied history.
"With Katrina and everything that the Coast has been through, it's just nice to see it open again," Pittman said. "It's just like home, another piece of home here."
In 1972, Pittman's late husband brought her to the White Pillars after she graduated from high school. Tuesday, she was eating in the restaurant for the first time since.
"As soon as we found out the date and found out it was tonight I called and made reservations," Pittman said.
Following months of preparation, restaurant operator Chef Austin Sumrall was ready to put his farm to table menu to the test.
"We had a truck roll in from a farm we buy from today and we climbed up on there and saw what they had on there and we tweaked the menu to reflect that," Sumrall said.
The food is served in stately dining rooms with one of the rooms featuring a waterfront view. Sumrall said all the pieces are in place for the White Pillars to continue a tradition of excellence.
"People have a lot of high expectations for this restaurant because of the history and what they're used to when they used to come here," Sumrall said. "We want to meet those expectations and exceed them."
On opening night, Cathy Pittman's expectations were met with the blue plate special featuring fried chicken, collard greens and macaroni and cheese.
"It was wonderful. If I come back I'll order it again," Pittman said.
The White Pillars restaurant is open Tuesday- Sunday from 5:30-10:00 p.m.