TUPELO – The familiar red roof and sign at the Bonanza restaurant on South Gloster Street have been a welcome sight for more than 40 years to diners, many of whom have gotten into a familiar and comfortable routine.
For example, if Albert Fears isn’t on the grill cooking a steak, some of the customers get a little worried.
“He’s the cook people ask for all the time,” said Marshall Cotton, the general manager of the restaurant. “Some folks will send their steaks back to get it ‘cooked right like Albert does it’ if he’s not here. He’s been with us as long as we’ve been open, and one of the reasons why people come back.”
When it’s busy, Fears can grill as many as 30 steak at one time, ranging from rare to well-done.
“You just have to know what you’re doing and keep your eye on it,” Fears said.
He is among a handful of long-time employees at the restaurant that’s been part of the Tupelo dining scene since 1973.
And it is one of the last of its kind, too.